If someone had told me when I was younger I would be training in a martial art, I would have laughed at them. I didn’t even like sport. I grew up in Invercargill, New Zealand and I don’t watch or get excited about rugby. Not quite sure how that happened to me being a kiwi.
When I started Aikido I didn’t know my left foot from my right. I was 42 years old and i wanted to defend myself properly. Nearly 24 years later, I am still training mostly 4 times a week. If I lived in Japan it would be every day. I have left behind the desire to defend myself. Sure if I had to, I would have a few things up my sleeve. I have been tested a few times over the years. Fortunately, I have remained very calm, that proved to me that my training was working.
I am strong but Aikido has relaxed me. I used to be stroppy and my life was a struggle in many ways. I feel as if I am learning the deeper aspects of Aikido. for example not to meet force head on. As my teacher says “feel how they come”. My thinking was I don’t want to feel how they come. He says” absorb their energy/attack “I do believe that these principals apply to life. I am not always relaxed to feel or absorb someone else attacking me, my ego jumps up to defend.
I will keep on training.
I have learned to magic of practice and discipline.
I train now because it is something I do, like brushing my teeth. It has taught me great balance, relaxation, timing, good posture. It keeps my body strong.
These days I am beginning to understand the power of my center and relaxation. All the macho stuff is irrelevant. I have noticed over the years that males need to let go of their muscle strength and women need to learn to trust their bodies.
My training now is about relaxing my mind and breathing, Of course the body does get strong