How Martial Arts Masters Abuse Authority • Martial Arts Journey

How an Aikido Sensei can Abuse Authority Ever since I started Aikido I wanted to become
an Aikido Sensei. I wanted to introduce people to this practice,
which positively influenced my life. Yet little did I know, that by taking over
the positive benefits of Aikido, I also took on a lot of negative aspects, which I later
passed on to my students. Hi, my name is Rokas, and in this Martial
Arts Journey video I will share my story, on how I learned, how being an Aikido Sensei
can be abused. I’ve started training Aikido when I was
fourteen years old. Since Aikido is based on a hierarchy system,
the role of an authority figure there was very important from day one. While my first Aikido instructor did not ask
me to call him Sensei, he was definitely the authority figure of the Dojo, and a very important
role model for me at the day. I trusted him completely and whatever he said
I believed in 100%. Unfortunately, having such a young and receptive
mind, I had little power to control and distinguish what were the good traits of him, and which
were the bads ones to pick up from. The same happened as I moved on to other instructors. After training Aikido for 8 years, I was eventually
ready to become a professional Aikido Sensei. While I had all the best intentions, I opened
my professional Aikido Dojo when I was only 22 years old, and had little understanding
on how things work. Thus, I ended up naturally repeating the way
my Aikido instructors presented themselves and ran their Dojos, thinking that it was
the best way, since it worked well enough for me, being their student. Unfortunately, I had no way of knowing what’s
going to happen next. My Dojo was running well in terms of attendance,
yet occasionally some major crises would happen. They either came up as problems between me
and some of my students, or between the students themselves. While I was able to solve these crises in
one way or the other, these situations kept repeating themselves and I started wondering
why. With enough curiosity, after running the Dojo
for about a year, I realized that most of them actually came from how I ran things and
presented myself. First of all, I left no space for my students
to question me. Every time they had some issue, I was quick
to blame them and explain why it was their fault, without taking responsibility myself. After all – in my belief, it was not fitting
for a Sensei to take on the responsibility. While I pointed out their mistakes most of
the times rightfully, I never addressed or gave space to address what I did wrong, this
way staying “clean”, yet that gave no space to offer me feedback to grow from. This also lead my students to develop fear
towards addressing anything to me, since they knew they were going to get “punished”
if they will, and they would end up keeping things in, until eventually they couldn’t
hold it in anymore, either leading to talks behind my back, or an explosion of their emotions,
leading to a big crises to deal with. This was not the only issue though. I also realized that I was using my position
of authority to influence them in to doing what I needed them to do, in my opinion, for
the best of the Dojo, and in my opinion, for themselves. Yet if I made the wrong assumption, they had
to pay the price by their experience. Also, their creativity and independence was
limited, and they felt that they need to ask my permission even in the smallest of decisions
and questions they felt that they needed to ask. I was holding all the cards, and that was
not helping them grow. The way I presented myself had also negative
impact. In order to hold the Dojo together, I always
tried to present only the best side of myself. I would not discuss my personal flaws or problems
with my students, and soon enough they started perceiving me as a “perfect human being”. Yet while that was inspiring to them to a
degree, if occasionally some of my flaws came out to surface, it was devastating to them,
since it shocked them to learn I was actually “a human being” and this blow would lead
them to lose faith in my teachings entirely. This situation also limited my personal life. While holding this image of perfection, I
learned that if I decided to have a beer somewhere out in a bar, both my students and even people
outside of the Dojo who knew me, suddenly came to a conclusion that I was a complete
fraud. For them it was an all or nothing relationship,
because in a sense, that is the way I set it up, them having an expectation that a “perfect
human being” may exist and if I failed to be one, then everything I offered had suddenly
lost all value to them. These set-up false expectations had also a
negative impact on their personal self-perception. Developing a belief that I was somewhat “perfect”
made a lot of them believe that this is what they need to become as well. Since it was unrealistic, it created constant
stress of setting up too high expectations for themselves. In the end, some of them also started presenting
a false image of perfection as well, while also taking over my bad ways of conduct, such
as developing fear based relationships with other students. When I realized the negative impact my actions
had on people I worked with, I decided to tear down all my negative patterns and to
start changing things. The first thing I did, I invited a meeting
with all of my senior student and encouraged them to say everything they didn’t like
about what I did. In the beginning they were concerned that
as soon as they will say something, I will put the blames on them, yet when they realized
that wasn’t happening, I was in for a three hour, non-stop listening session of what was
wrong. I realized how much my students were holding
back, of which most of, I did not know, just because I gave no space for them to express
it. As the next step, I started addressing my
flaws and mistakes openly to them every chance I got, taking as much responsibility on what
was happening that I could. I also stopped trying to present myself in
a better light than I actually was, and I started being much more natural. It was interesting and difficult at the same
time to observe how that influenced my students of that time. Most of them lost completely all faith in
anything I was doing. Their object of worship was suddenly destroyed,
and they did not know what to do with the reality they now faced. They were used to something more, even when
it was not real, and I turned out to be not enough for them as a simple human being with
some Aikido, Yoga and meditation skill set and knowledge. It was a difficult period of transition as
I lost pretty much all of my students. Yet eventually new students came, and now
they got to know a different version of me and the Dojo. Much more limited, but also much more authentic,
realistic and relatable. After years of working in this new way, setting
up realistic expectations, taking on responsibility, giving space for creativity and offering myself
and my teachings with both the good and bad, with time, I started to see much better results
and much better relationships, which were based on common sense and critical thinking. If I made a mistake, I was quick to acknowledge
it and that became a lesson to all of us. My students mistakes were also accepted, and
that gave them space to learn and grow as themselves, not as some image of “perfection”. This lead to a Dojo and student base which
was much more healthy, and most of the crises which used to happen, stopped happening entirely. Up to this day I look back at the change that
was made in how I used my authority, and while it was very difficult to experience the change
at the time, I never regretted it. Often times reality is not as fascinating
as fantasy, yet it is the only place where long-lasting, positive results may endure. And everything that is based on fantasy – is
doomed to be destroyed sooner or later. I hope you will find where to draw inspiration
from my story, whether you are a student or an instructor. This can happen to any school or style, so
let me know what experience you have in the comments. If you liked the video, make sure to like
and share it to spread the message further. If you want more videos like it – subscribe
to the Martial Arts Journey channel. This was Rokas and I wish you to own your

100 thoughts on “How Martial Arts Masters Abuse Authority • Martial Arts Journey

  1. Awesome that you opened your own dojo at 22yrs old. The issues you raise go way beyond trad martial arts and into the realm of group psychology.

  2. Specifically about traditional martial arts, I feel often that the myth of perfection is directly link to the cult most of the practitioners on the founder of their respective style.
    I was reading recently "The art of peace" which a compilation of Morihei Ueshiba aphorisms by John Stevens (an aikido practitioner), the introduction goes like this : "Morihei Ueshiba was the greatest martial artist of history. At eighty years old he was able to disarm any attacker…" This is so wrong on so many levels.
    On the book "Reflexions about aikido" by Jean-Gabriel Greslé, you can read how Morihei Ueshiba was the perfection that none can possibly imagine to reach ever again… That's so terrible, the deification of the founder is so intense that it is impossible to not impregnate the rest of the aikidokas.
    And the worst is that we continue to create idols now with people like Miyamoto Tsuruzo, Christian Tissier, Donovan Waite and others (people who by the way are really nice and accessible, on the opposite the myth that is generated around them).

  3. Oh my God , man , Rokas , you were like the most "mistake-making" man in the dojo 😂😂😂😂 good you realized it unlike my ex-sensei (Aikido).

  4. I think you experienced what we called in France : "gouroufication". It means acting like a guru. Of course you are partially responsible of that but you were very young and it's a current problem in esoteric martial art like Taî-Chi for instance. But you are not the only person who was responsible of that. Your students were also responsible, because some people need to have a guru. I saw many people like that in Aïkido or Taï-Chi. They want to be guided, they need an approval. So at the exact time you stopped to be that superman who knows everything, who never did a mistake, your teaching was no longer usefull to them. They were less interested by the martial art of Aïkido that they were interested by the teacher. Good for you, you stopped to be that person because I know to many people who also know that but never stop.

  5. As parents we teach to our sons what we learned from our parents…it's the same in Aikido…but a good teacher is able to understand…and correct himself…I think you're a good teacher however ☺

  6. And that is why Aikido has such reputation among non aikodokas and some of the practising aikodokas. Also, that is what makes differences between good and bad Senseis and dojos.

  7. I think you should change the title of this video, I think you are being very honest about talking about your own mistakes as an aikido sensei, but these are your mistakes and the title seems to be making those a general problem in aikido. Anyone who knows about asian and Japanese cultures knows that in those countries hierarchy is much more present or direct than in western countries, where hierarchy may be hidden behind money, which is not always better. Many Aikido senses might have worked from the beginning as you yourself learned through your experience, every person is different and everyone has strengths and weaknesses. As I said, you are talking bout your weaknesses but I don't get the point of making your own mistakes as if they were general and specific Aikido mistakes. I would like to know what is your real problem with Aikido, because you are posting a new video with negative thoughts on Aikido every week, comparing it to another martial arts which Aikido never meant to be like.

  8. Every Single Thing you spoke about was my biggest fear in opening up my Martial Arts School…

    After 20 years of doing Martial Arts, one of the things I hated was the inability to question my Senseis. Ive done many different systems with many different Senseis and those old traditional martial artists always had that "I am your Sensei… Im always right… just trust me." mentality and I hated it!

    So now that I have my own school, I actually retain the rank of "Sempai" (which is kinda like "Big Brother" in the Karate world) and not Sensei. So my teaching style is kinda like that of an older brother more than your superior. It makes class a lot of fun and my "students" are always open with me….

    And when I drink a beer… (after class sometimes….) my "students" are right next to me buyin the next rounds… Its a weird relationship but it works for all of us and eliminates that whole "Sensei is GOD" bullshit that I hated dealing with as a Martial Artist.

  9. I follow your channel largely out of curiosity. It's been a long time since I practised any martial arts, and I'm not sure if I'll ever have the level of commitment to get back into them. But, nonetheless, I can relate to your story – as a teacher of a different kind.

    I'm an ESL teacher, and upon first becoming one, I brought a lot of baggage with me. I was a well educated, qualified, native speaker, actually full of academic knowledge on teaching ESL methodologies. Dumping myself in a small city in China, I discovered myself to be quite unique in possessed those qualities too. But none of them made me a good teacher. In fact, I was terrible at it. I learned how to be good at it by one thing only: testing everything against the reality before me. It's not that everything I learned was wrong – far from it, much of it is still very much useful. But none of that is a substitute for actual classroom experience, because only that can tell you HOW and WHEN to apply your knowledge.

    I was teaching very small children, the youngest less than 3 years old. That doesn't leave a lot of room for bluster and falsehoods. I was also stuck in a foreign land where I spoke woefully little of the local language, and didn't understand the culture at all. I have that to thank for pushing me to change so much so fast. Sadly, not all teachers get that kind of push to be better at their profession. I'm so glad that I got my push.

    I began watching your channel around the time I made those big changes, and I can't say that you caused them. But I can say that despite only ever having had one Aikido lesson in my life, your videos about the changes you've undergone to reform your martial arts practices have resonated with me deeply. I have always believes the interdisciplinarity is the key to academic success. It also extends far beyond academia too. Thank you, Rokas, for making your journey public, and know that it's not just other martial artists that benefit from what you do.

  10. Well said. Hi ,I have watched you for about a year now and not always agreed with you. But after more than 40 years of training in Japan and the states, I feel some teachers I have known should really hear your words and realize why most of their senior students have left them. Senior students help keep bad habits from developing in the dojo. Structure in the dojo is important to keep focus but fear under minds the learning process.
    Unfortunately some teachers only demonstrate while the better ones actually teach. M

  11. Id say this applies to anything, not just martial arts. Reminds me kinda of how I used to behave in relationships back in the day.

  12. I studied TaeKwanDo for many years in a small dojang, as I was loose friends with the owner. As one of the few older adult students, I enjoyed a more casual relationship with the head instructor. I remember being disoriented as a beginner when he told me that TKD was only the tip of the iceberg, and that I should investigate other martial arts in addition before being able to consider myself a proper practitioner.

  13. I actually experienced this same thing when I was younger. As a teenager I respected my master like he was a super hero. When I saw him smoking one day it really shocked me. I think since he was a martial art master he would live the perfect life. He would have the perfect diet, health, and wouldn't have many flaws at all. It really made me see him differently. On another note Rokas, you should think about doing some Judo. It was be so interesting to see how your aikido worked in a throwing competition as opposed to bjj. Also judo i more of traditional martial art, and that would work so well and be practical to teach something like a long side of aikido.

  14. I've found this problem to be very prevalent in western located and western run dojos of specifically Japanese martial arts. This is all just my experience and opinion, so please don't take it as truth, but in Japan the sempai-kohai (senior-junior) relationship and the sensei-student relationship is hierarchical, but the huge cultural differences between Japan and western countries means it very often leads to a misunderstanding. In western conceptions of hierarchy, which we largely get from our school experience, the teacher is the one who judges, gives instruction, and gives punishment… but in most Japanese dojo, this side of being the sensei is only half the story.

    The sensei-student relationship in Japan is much deeper and based on MUTUAL respect – the student works hard for the sensei, and the sensei guides the student. The sensei teaches the student to be the judge of their own progress and the sensei is a guide. And going out drinking with the sensei and sempai is a compulsory part of most martial arts clubs. A lot of the strictness and severity is because of the hone/tatemae culture in japan (public face versus private face). In the dojo during a session, it is time to not complain, to use the "public face", to seem strict. But a necessary twin to this is after the session has finished, you go for a drink, or have a chat, or become mates with the sensei, and you still respect him/her and they still guide you, but the relationship is much more like a normal mutually beneficial friendship with someone who is a generation (usually) older than you.

    The problem becomes even worse when you remember that Japan has a non-direct communication culture, and that most foreigners who go to Japan only ever get shown the "tatemae", the public face.

    All in all, rokas, its good to see you are developing your own style, but if you get a chance, I'd strongly recommend you go and live in Japan and join a few traditional dojos and you will learn that dojo life is much more about community and mutual respect and friendship and the "sensei" thing isn't at all as strict or "top down authoritarian" as you would expect. Hell, most Japanese organisations are hierarchical for age/experience/skill level, but even so they usually follow the ethos of the leader being the one who keeps the group together, but the group is the entity which makes the decisions.

    I'd recommend you give this a read "Japanese Society" by Nakane Chie:

    This classic text on Japanese hierarchical norms and how they can have respect for sensei but still make decisions through group consensus will be an excellent read for you Rokas, and for anyone else who is realising that the "sensei is always right" approach has something deeply wrong with it.

  15. Great hindsight, it took courage. In martial arts more than in other disciplines we forget we're humans, dealing with humans, and even the greatest masters are always praised for their humility.

  16. Sometimes its just down to how someone frases things. The best teachers ive had always explain "this is how I do it" or "this is how I was tought" or "I think if you do it this way it might work better". Never "this is the ultimate truth". That is also the style I try to adopt if ever called on to teach.

  17. As instructors we still can never complain about our business to our students this is rule number one you can show some personal flaws and read mind them that you’re human but at the end of the day you still need to present yourself and in some way that they can look up to. I’m so open that I tell them they can go train at other studios, they can ask me questions how I’ve changed creek Killam on the spot when presented with something better. That’s very rare, but I leave it open. I say to the students if you can show me a better way That meets our standards, I will start teaching it this way. This keeps us cutting edge. I tell my students we are always evolving.

  18. I look up to you so much for being so self reflective. I came into this with an open paradigm and I believe that’s easy, what you’ve done is you went completely from the far other side, recognize your flaws and made the far journey. I respect you so much. ****Deep Bow

  19. My karate instructor always says ''You are allowed to make mistakes but you are never allowed to quit.'' Key to self improvement. Make mistakes, learn, try again, repeat. I am never ashamed when I teach to point out some one is better then me at certain technique and use them for demonstration. We all have our strengths and weaknesses and by putting it out there in front of the class I immediately defuse situation where some one would talk about how bad my kicks are. ''Yeah I know I just told you.'' That is how I keep my ego in check.

  20. Rokas, you did something very few can do. That is to look inside ones self and find ones flaws. Everyone has flaws,but often we refuse to address those flaws. I hope all goes well at camp, and I am looking forward to seeindg your progress

  21. Dude, I can totally relate. When I began teaching (taichi & wing chin) I tried to clone my instructors way of teaching (he was a narcissistic ego-centric prick). I forced myself to be something that I thought I should be, but I left myself outside the studio every time I walked in the door.
    Eventually I became me, I dropped the "instructor" persona and embraced myself.. The moment I did that, my school flourished. I pushed my students to express themselves through movement and to find their own understanding and philosophy which resulted in not only them growing by my own personal development tool on a new life..

  22. Dear Rokas, that's one of the most interesting and touching reports on aikido I ever read. Hats off! Becoming a sensei was not a goal of mine but as a student I experienced basically what you described. I would also dare to say that the dojo I used to attend was a kind of "sect" since there was a very strict hierarchical discipline and questioning was not allowed. Maybe (and I do stress out the "maybe"), in the far-east such an attitude is common but I am a European and a son of "the age of enlightenment" and for me questioning is essential.

    My main interest was not self-defense but a friend of mine opened my eyes on the highly dogmatic approach of aikido at the end of a class.

    Indeed, my friend and I were discussing about how to defend ourselves from a front kick. After listening to our conversation, our Sensei wanted to be attacked by my friend. My friend used his front leg and kicked our Sensei on the knee and hurt him.

    The answer from our sensei was: "it is not wise to kick with the front leg and you should always use the back leg"! An absurd answer. From that moment I started realizing that many people were brainwashed and that the self-defense potentiality of aikido was largely over-estimated.

    That said, I kept training in aikido for several years and really enjoyed it for what it was for me: not a self-defense system but a kind of "dynamic zen".

  23. Aikido is not based on a hierachy system. Aikido is based on love. I you remove the system, Aikido is still there. If you remove love,….

  24. And the problem can go beyond that if the instructor/master/sensei/shifu does that for appearance and, behind the curtains, she/he is the complete opposite of what is spoken.

  25. Actually such journeys are generally controlled by fear in the beginning. Due to desire to be accepted or more realistically due to self defense against being rejected. As soon as self confidence gets stronger, ( as for open minded teachers like you) you realize that you don’t need to protect your self anymore… Not only against to your students but also against to your self. That is where second and tough part of the journey starts…It is generally hard to accept all these and keep going. But as far as I understand you managed. Wish you success through this path…

  26. Oh man, get on with it already. We all know about how cult life influences basic psychology. Thanks to the recent insights into cult life. No, thank you for taking this journey. I have so much respect for you for putting this forward! I really do. Now let’s get on with your lessons.

  27. I often go get some drinks with my senseis at the pub after training. It helps you get to know your sensei and fellow students, imo. It's also a good time for you to open up about your own flaws and challenges. In the martial art I am practicing, your sensei is your friend and your fellow student, so while you can't help but greatly respect them in the dojo I always feel comfortable and like I can be myself around them. Anyway, I always felt they really cared about my input and whenever I said anything to my senseis they always took it to heart (often without saying anything but the actions spoke for themselves).

    Anyway, I was always a firm believer that if you close yourself off to criticism, you will never improve. In one of the martial arts I am learning the philosophy is that the sensei is equal to the student and we can all learn from each other regardless of our grades. So, I am glad you asked your students for their feedback, that's extremely important in self-improvement and I think that's what every good sensei needs.

  28. You're one of the brightest and most reasonable persons I know within the martial art world. You are a voice of truth and evolved thinking!

  29. You could actually travel faster on your martial arts journey if you get rid of your "homesickness".
    You doubted Aikido in so many recent videos.
    You mentioned, that your destination will be "MMA".
    So tell us… at which point of the journey are we right now?

    Do you travel by plane?
    On plane, there are many thoughts on both sides of the journey. But it is fast and overwhelmed by the new.
    But no direct route take this much time(decision).

    Do you walk?
    Please show us what you discover on your way. (other systems/philosophies/beliefs)

    Or are you already there?
    Then show what you discovered and maybe compare it, with home (or the way from there).

    I think, you are still packing your luggage. VERY SLOWLY!
    But I can understand it. You don't have to wreck your home before a journey 😉
    It will always be your home.


  30. Good selfreflextion, but quite horrible for your students. Luckily my first aikido teacher was not so egocentric. We studied aikido together, everyone from their level. We all learned from each other, and best way to learn was from body to body, not by some self praising lecture or be blamed of something. After that good key figure moved other city, we started to have all the egos competing against other. So, do not be key figure, let your student be one, build his confindence, not yours. Put trust in his own findings. What you are talking about is quite common in aikido world – ego building. Egos' are too fragile to deal critisism or questions asked. It is very sick world, that nage is allowed put blame on uke, when he is not able to do technique the way he wants. Such twisted view exists only in aikido world. Other martial artists understand failure only because of his own incompetence and lack of proper training, not anybody else's fault. I have priviledge to have competitive training partner, who always does differently as I have asked him to do, and usually uses max force. He wants to win about every situation. By challenging me I am allowed to develop and learn. Last time I learned, that I have learned to hold bokken wrong way. My kamae becomes stronger, if I bring my hands always closer to hip, which is more forward. Do you allow yourself learn from anyone, or does it have to be other blackbelt, shodan or sensei? Some aikidokas are like that, limiting their own learning all the time. Then it comes point, that it is not worth to train with those "experienced" aikidokas at all. They have stepped into illusionary world, drawn from their own imagination. If situation is not alive, there is absolutely no point having training partner first place. You can do same movements alone by ourself, or use a doll. Aikido can be seen as moving meditation, but should never sold as self defense system, unless it is really trained like self defense. Which means abandoning quite everything, that is reached this modern age. And starting to study what kind of conflicts actually exists – meaning other than a guy holding others hand nicely. What it feels to be violently threatened? There is zero readiness psychologically meet really hostile situation, where you could be badly hurt. What it feels to be get a hit and be stunned, how you can keep yourself defended after taken down, How can you de-escalate threatening situation… Aikido as self defense… Aikidopeople should just stop talking about matter, they have no clue of.

  31. Nothing Aikido specific. You've just been a bad sensei and learned your lessen. I teach Karate. Same hierarchy. And my students say I drink too much and shouldn't get in trouble so often.

  32. Thank you very much for a model of adequate thinking you are presenting. It's like a breath of a fresh air. I wish I could be as reasonable in all things I do.

  33. Very well articulated and admirable, Rokas. While the practical side in self-defence is undoubtedly key, your sharing the journey of personal self discovery and humility is the true growth from Martial Arts! In my opinion a real Master/Mentor puts ego aside to better the Art and the student. Well done!

  34. Dude, thanks for your bravery in sharing this story. I'm sure it has been mirrored a thousand times but so rarely is it ever shared openly. Good luck to you on everything brother.

  35. Another very honest and true report from MAJ channel. When I was a kid in the 80s, all martial arts were respected, it was generally believed that they are all good fighting techniques, and aikido or kung fu fighters of same size, strenght and level as some other like karate etc could match each other. All that started to change slowly after UFC appeared, and more rapidly in last years when Aikido and other martial arts were exposed to serious questioning with no respect in advance. Those who started practicing Aikido before that, who were inspired by Seagal movies, or some older friend who practiced it, now are serious problem of proving themselves in world where there is no respect for anything unless brutally eveluated. I see Aikido people now distancing themselves from claims that it is meant for serious defense, and serious street fight (among other things), and it makes it all even more strange, you practice figjting and defeating oponents, and it is not actually for that but for some mystical, philosophical purposes…

  36. Martial art….life and death in war environment.
    Techniques=photo frames suggestions on alternative entrance avoidance or disabling enemy.
    Student=a conscious scientist of the art absorbing…applying….seeing the limits of his own abilities and developing a persevering spirit which in war scenarios will probably give him survival possibilities
    All movements applied…or invented..have already been used in brutal savage man to man are..battles…challenges and are up to to the students qualities to apply develop enhance reject or modify in each generation….

  37. Man, honestly you are complete idiot. You may be trained for 8 or whatever years but its not about the time you trained. You learned nothing for the time. Go to Japan and tell them what you think about Aikido.

  38. Appreciate your honesty. Aikido in Japan is exactly like Tai Chi in China. No sparring, weight training or resistence training, no real fighting or pressured situation, all demonstrations. Slow and all about styles and authority. You know what, no matter what style it is, IMO, when the greatest living 'sensei' or 'master' has to be a senior with no physicality whatsoever, it's definitely bullshido, I'm sorry, but this is the case.

  39. Hey Rokas – this is cool but I think you are jumping to conclusions on things. I often realize 10 years of long-term incorrect beliefs but now in a flash I know? You probably are still just as deluded as you were previously – you just have a new delusion. No offense intended, this is what I think of myself as well. I believe the practice of honesty and communicating your experience to groups is good, but in my experience others can often not understand and it can not be constructive. Try to remember there is always a higher perspective than you can see. I believe your journey is not through martial arts but of your own soul and psyche.

  40. My highschool buddy achieved 1st kyu in aikido. I told him it was useless for practical self defence. He opposed and asked me to throw a punch at him. It was in a pub. For safety reasons (my knuckles, his face) I went half the speed, he grabbed my hand and twisted it. Girls were impressed by this. I was the loser. I tried to explain it would not be possible in a real time but people are really easy to deceive.

  41. I'm more of a punch kick person….boxing/bit of wing chun for defence kinda guy….this throw/submission thing…don't work. How can you throw someone who's punching you in the face.

  42. Thanks to videos like yours I have always immediately quit any dojo where I wasn't allowed to ask questions. It really can happen in any style, be it something like aikido or boxing, even hema. Even now I sometimes annoy my silat teacher with too many questions, but at the end of the day, he's always glad to have questions to answer 😉

  43. I'm a teacher and I have serious respect for your courage of telling the public as what the reality of teaching is. The fraudulent vision that the teacher is a perfect human being and the disappointment of the student finding out otherwise.

  44. You are a good teacher. You are very humble and ego-less. I came from a school with an delusional "perfect master". It was quite painful to learn that the real world is much bigger.

  45. Congrats! You are very brave and honorable, tis rare to find someone who recognises ones flaws and make amends, a real inspiration to all guides and instructors/couches

  46. I was raised in a family without a father figure, I had to grow up not knowing 100 percent how a guy is supposed to be, like for example i ate slow where as my friends at fast and rushed to go play. or i showed my affection straightforward instead of struggling to make it look more manly. The number 1 thing i noticed growing up was the repeated lectures id get from my family when we had arguments. for example "SO YOUR CALLING ME A LIAR? WHY DONT YOU HIT ME THEN?" and some slight differences but mostly around those type of accusations. so i grew up fearing woman as a whole due to mental abuse. I looked at mom like, shes always right and would fear to share my view as the only boy in the family i mean if i spoke up id just be seen as a child and my mistakes would cast more images of my gender being brute and leaving going as they please. so watching this ive felt a connection with the student teacher story. Now ive dealt with my problem by not giving so much control to my familys view of me, because i hold my image. And no matter what, how i see myself needs to be the real me, not a restricted confused version.

  47. I've recently started an Aikido practice here in Portland. The sensei is kind and supportive despite the fact I haven't done anything right. She believes in me more than I believe in myself.
    I do have a question for you. Do people who practice Aikido not drink? I ask because of what you said in your video and because on my first class I thought a senior member said who wants a brew.I told him no thanks then went to change. When I came out I saw another student sweeping the mat. I realized I mistook broom for brew . We had a laugh but he did happen to mention he does not
    drink. Just so you know, I'm not taking Aikido to be some kind of great fighter or even use it for self defense. It sounded interesting to me because I can no longer run or do yoga due to past injuries.
    Aikido sounded like it combined physical fitness with spirituality.
    No one should be held in such a light that they appear perfect. Look what happened to the Catholic church.
    Is there som

  48. It is super hard for some students to embrace the idea that their Sensei is not perfect. I like your introspective journey. Good for you.

  49. Only our coaches, in my amateur boxing days, because pride and arrogant rule over the place, you must be great or you will be ignored or rejected.. they only prioritized the great already because of compititive egos.

  50. Total respect for you for making this video. We could all learn a lot from your humility. I saw your fight with the MMA guy and I loved how you handled the loss with honesty.

  51. I'm training Chinese Martial arts, that happened to me in Germany with my McDojo, now I'm training in China und my Shifu don't call them like that and don't behave like that, they are our friends and the real relationships between a disciple and Shifu takes many years of trust and understanding like a friendship… I love them and I'm very happy to have such good "masters" 😊🔥❤

  52. So you talk about how Aikido is bullshit yet you still do it. Boy I'd actually fuck you up and I don't do Boxing or anything, I just got naturally quick hands and a dangerous right hook.

  53. That depends. If the students knew that martial art beforehand, then they didn't had to come and learn it. But they don't know anything, so the authority is still on the teacher. The modern way of sharing the authority with the students just decreases the quality of the teaching, as incompetent students will come to believe that they know something of value even if they don't. Or maybe they will come to falsely think that the teacher is some old fart who knows nothing

  54. One of the hardest things for an instructor to do is separate their ego from their art. Once an instructor is able to humble themself and teach humility, they are able to achieve greatness.

  55. Imagine my disappointment when it turned out that Jason Momoa can't actually breathe underwater 🙂

  56. I once trained under a high ranking instructor who have me a bad feeling the first day I met him.
    It turned out I was right – he turned out to not be a very good person who did a lot of ethically questionable things.

  57. There is definitely a cult -like mentality and environment in many Asian style martial arts schools.
    I think the reinforcement of military-like protocols and ritualistic practices are one of the main causes for this, but the perception of the teacher as some kind of mystical figure who has secret knowledge is basically idol worship.
    It's a weird culture.

  58. Meanwhile at our dojo:

    Our edon, one of three instructors (plus our master) and one of the two who do most of the teaching, is literally the most approachable people to exist and he’s a fountain of infectious confidence.
    Our chodon, the other who does alot of the teaching, is nice/understanding and provides plenty of positive reinforcement. She’s also an inspiration to persevere because she has lead classes while having a migraine.
    (Im not sure what rank the third instructor is) he’s mostly at the other class and I don’t see him much, but he’s good.
    And then our master, he’s harsh but fair and mostly sticks to being professional. I have had some short but sweet conversations with him though.

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