Learning to ride…

Aikido is like learning to ride a bicycle, sort of.

Many things have to work together simultaneously… leaving one out prevents success.

Hands on handlebars, feet on pedals, steady pedaling action, posture upright, eyes on the road, good balance during turns, etc. The body has to be unified in a comparable way for Aikido technique to work.

Beginners see advanced practitioners riding hands-free or racing or riding a unicycle and want to do the same things right away. There are a few preparatory stages to go through first, like training wheels, just as there are in Aikido.

The senior student a beginner is practicing with is ideally kind of like the dad who runs alongside the child on the bike, holding it steady while the child figures out the movement, rather than challenging the kid and making it impossible for him/her to learn quickly.

And it is good for both bicycling and Aikido novices to practice falling safely!