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Disturbing trend...
Village Old Timer
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I'm not sure how to discuss this in a non-inflammatory way, but I will give it a go. I've notice an increase in people wanting to train in the Bujinkan, but don't have a regular connection to a dojo or a teacher. Often, people have teachers that are a great distance away, yet often don't make regular trips or attend very often. Instead of working on what they have been taught and getting better at what they have seen, the try to learn "new" skills from books and video and rely on them as their teachers.

And, in their absence from a dojo and with a teacher they pass down what little they think they get from a video or book. Yet, doing so is a disservice to their students and themselves. With silly websites like Richard "I don't know how to open a door" Van Donk's and other video ranking systems. There are a growing amount of sites that give out memberships to the Bujinkan without ever stepping into a dojo or having a teacher. They often can receive rank without ever entering the dojo or actually being seen.

I seriously think that this kind of thing out to be stopped. Richard's is providing anyone who wants to be called a martial artist the paper work to validate themselves without having spent the time under direct supervision of a teacher.

But, this trend isn't just about the video's or books, it is also about the distance and seeking "new" things to teach. "New" isn't something that needs to be taught, what is actually known should be taught.

The same goes for what was just seen. Hatsumi sensei has said one should train on something for several years before teaching it, and this seems like sound advice to me.

Posted on: 2010/6/4 12:42
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Re: Disturbing trend...
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Hear hear!

When I first joined this site, I was stupid and young and fell for the home study marketing (luckily I only bought part one of the course and not the absurdly expensive package)

However, despite my belligerence and lack of wisdom, the sempai on Kutaki showed me what was wrong with that path and I stopped before I ever really got going with it.

It is better to wait years (as I ended up doing) until an instructor is within one's reach than to lull oneself into a false sense of knowledge with a home study course.

As foolish as I think it is to do a HSC, I worry still for those who take them and then believe they're invincible warriors. Unfortunately, the crooks behind such courses market using such suggestions.

Case in point: http://i680.photobucket.com/albums/vv ... t2010-06-03at111747PM.png

That sums up all that is frightening about home study courses; it only gets worse as you scroll down the page.

I was shocked to find out that a certain home study marketer offers a course up until godan! Admittedly he cannot administer the sakki test, but it is frightening that a self-respecting instructor would use such a method of instruction for that!

EDIT: The screen capture photo I tried to post would not show, so I've replaced it with a link to the image.

Posted on: 2010/6/4 13:23
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Re: Disturbing trend...
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I wrote on the FAQ of my website:
“The budo of the Bujinkan is based on Isshi Soden (person to person communication). The instructor should have a strong relationship with a shihan (master instructors) in Japan (or with Hatsumi-sensei himself). Generally one would expect the person to have lived and trained in Japan and/or travels there at least yearly for training. There are many instructors who have made a few flying visits to Japan for training and done a bit of rank hunting but from my experience the quality of the instructor is measured by the depth of the relationship with their teacher.”

I would only ever recommend:
Best Option – Train with one of the students of Hatsumi-sensei who trained through the ‘60s and/or ‘70s till today.
Second Best Option – Train with someone who has trained extensively and maintains a strong teacher / student relationship with one of the above teachers.
Third Best Option – Train with someone who maintains a strong teacher / student relationship with one of the above “second best option” teachers.
Fourth Best Option - Do something else.


Posted on: 2010/6/4 15:48
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Re: Disturbing trend...
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The final bottom line Robert, is that each person is responsible for the choices they make. Take time to educate yourself on an art before just accepting something as 'gospel'. This art must be felt, and from someone who really knows what he/she is doing. It is only AFTER you have an understanding that videos can be a great aid.

Posted on: 2010/6/5 10:02
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Re: Disturbing trend...
Village Old Timer
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I'm more concerned with people buying bujinkan memberships and receiving rank from people they have never met or trained with.
Rank and training ala carte via Van Donk's site and idea of transmitting the martial arts.

People make their own choices, and that includes those who teach and provide it. How the martial arts are learned and transmitted is one of the most important things about it.

Those that say they provide instruction via a video or website are really fooling themselves and making things worse. But, I really doesn't matter much now since that box has already been opened. With many people getting there rank and memberships through these kind of people.

Now you can learn how to be a martial arts instructor online now.
Isn't that just great?

Posted on: 2010/6/5 17:39
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Re: Disturbing trend...
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Besides the various problems of being unable to properly learn through such methods, it's frightening that these courses create an outlet for various frauds to legitimise themselves by becoming Shidoshi-ho by ranking to yondan with the video course and joining the "Sokeship Council".

http://manabi-masho.com/ShihanMarkMurdock.html - one of many examples

The other thing is that selling Bujinkan membership online means that many people who should not be allowed to become members (according to guidelines 2 - 4) can enter their credit card numbers and become cardholding Bujinkan members. (And I have seen a few Koga Kola types' sites in which "Bujinkan dojo membership" is listed amongst the 'qualifications')
Quote:
2. Only those able to exercise true patience, self-control, and dedication shall be allowed to participate. A physician's examination report shall be required. Specifically, individuals with mental illness, drug addiction, or mental instability shall be barred from joining. The necessity of such a report concerns individuals who may present a danger to others, for example, those with infectious diseases or illnesses, individuals with clinically abnormal personalities or physiology, and individuals lacking self-control.
3. Individuals with criminal records shall be turned away. Trouble makers, those who commit crimes, and those living in Japan who break domestic laws shall be turned away.
4. Those not upholding the guidelines of the Bujinkan, either as practitioners or as members of society, by committing disgraceful or reproachable acts shall be expelled. Until now, the Bujinkan was open to large numbers of people who came to Japan. Among them, unfortunately, were those committing violent drunken acts, the mentally ill, and trouble makers who thought only of themselves and failed to see how their actions might adversely affect others. Through their actions, such people were discarding the traditional righteous heart of the Bujinkan. From this day forward, all such people shall be expelled.

Posted on: 2010/6/6 3:54
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Re: Disturbing trend...
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This just emphasizes again that any student must do their research before training in an "art" or with an "instructor". Rank in and of itself is not a guarantee of either skill or teaching ability. Look at what they do, look at how their students do, check to see how well their words match their actions. All we can do gentlemen, is not be part of the problem. Those persons who accept such paths to rank also accept the lack of skill that goes with it and when the crap gets dumped on them they won't be able to get out of it. While I do sympathize with someone who has been caught in such a situation, it is still his/her responsibility. If they stay with the same then they have chosen it and deserve what will come. That's just the way it is folks, this is not a rule I made.

Posted on: 2010/6/6 21:13
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Re: Disturbing trend...
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What frightens me is that an unknowing student might join a dojo led by students who learned from a video. Sure, the "American Bujinkan Dojo" patch would be a clear warning sign but
a) There may be video students who stop the official ABD affiliation after godan.
b) I'm sure that many new students will mistakenly assume that ABD is some sort of official US administration for Bujinkan (sort of like national federations for Judo, karatedo etc) and not see the warning.

I just saw an ABD instructor boasting about his connections with Frank Dux ( http://manabi-masho.com/ShihanMarkMurdock.html )

Ending up with this sort of instructor is what makes many people regret their time spent in the Bujinkan.

Posted on: 2010/6/7 12:54
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Re: Disturbing trend...
Village Old Timer
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Quote:

Papa-san wrote:
This just emphasizes again that any student must do their research before training in an "art" or with an "instructor". Rank in and of itself is not a guarantee of either skill or teaching ability. Look at what they do, look at how their students do, check to see how well their words match their actions.


How can one educate him/herself about something that they are ignorant about? How does one do proper research?




Quote:
All we can do gentlemen, is not be part of the problem. Those persons who accept such paths to rank also accept the lack of skill that goes with it and when the crap gets dumped on them they won't be able to get out of it.


The tongue, it cannot stay bitten.

this guy: http://bujinkan-scotland.com/the%20instructor.html

is this guy: http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Thousan ... +in+the+gym...-a093904108

And let's not forget this guy: http://www.anjingbanfa.com/2ndRevolution.html

who was brought up in a thread here not so long ago.




Posted on: 2010/6/7 13:49
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Re: Disturbing trend...
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OK Benkyoka, you criticise both Jock and Peter with whom I do have personal knowledge and respect for. DO YOU OR HAVE YOU EVER MET THEM? You make a judgement on presumptions, have you not yet learned in your life to be careful about presumptions? Yes Peter Brusso created his own style but does teach his students effective things and he has had real combat, have you? Jock has also had REAL life experience in these areas, he was also a bodyguard from Queen Elizabeth and I did see a picture of them talking. So you criticism people without really knowing them. Do you not have things in your life that you now regret doing, and things that others "spun" in ways that are not true?? I have experienced such things and until you yourself have been in those shoes just maybe you should suspend judgement until you get personal knowledge.

Posted on: 2010/6/7 19:53
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