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Aikido Exercises for Teaching and Training: Revised Edition Paperback – March 24, 2009

4.5 out of 5 stars 57 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"I wish I'd had a book like this one when I started teaching 25
years ago! A valuable resource for beginners, senior students, and teachers
of the art."
—George Simcox, Virginia Ki Society

About the Author

C.M. Shifflett is the author of Ki in Aikido: A Sampler of Ki Exercises, and is a student of the late George Simcox.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Blue Snake Books; Revised edition (March 24, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1583942173
  • ISBN-13: 978-1583942178
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #122,031 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
C. M. Shifflett's newest book, "Aikido Exercises for Teaching and Training," (AET) expands her previous book, "Ki in Aikido, A Sampler of Ki Exercises" (KIE) (itself a limit -shattering book in its own right) in several directions.
While KIA dealt only with Ki Society style aikido, AET expands its scope, drawing lessons from all styles of aikido and a global internet discussion list where all aikidoka ae welcome. Likewise, Shifflet's second book focuses attention on all stages of study in aikido, from the first day in the dojo beginner to the 20 year experienced sensei. Finally (and most importantly in my opinion), AET expands well beyond traditional "throw uke to the ground" aikido, to encompass such rarely discussed topics as dojo injuries, the physical basis behind many common techniques, the psychological and physiological process of learning and "verbal self-defense."
It is this last section that truly creates the book's value, at least for this reader. In a chapter at the end entitled "Off the Mat, in Real Life," Shifflett (with a little help from linguistics expert Suzette Elgin) dismembers the traditional view of martial arts as a means to beat evildoers on the mean streets of your local city. instead, she shows how to apply principles of aikido to the sort of conflicts people are far more likely to encounter in their real, non-Steven Segalesque lives.
I have read the final chapter, including Verbal Self-Defense, Life Etiquette, about five times. I have read the middle of the book, about techniques and exercises, twice. This is a disturbing underemphasis on my part of the end. The middle of the book will likely never save your life. The end likely will.
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Format: Paperback
Carol Shifflett's second book covers the martial art of Aikido in a way I've never seen before. Most of the books I know deal with either the techniques or the philosophy, some try to cover both. Mostly, the technique books are lost on me because I'm not good at learning techniques from photographs - and the philosophy books are often very difficult to understand without guidance. But Carol's book talks of things I haven't found in any other place:
Ever thought about the physics of Aikido? Ever seen a collection of answers to those "silly" beginner's questions? Ever thought about "verbal Aikido"? And - ever gotten advice from people of various Aikido styles from all over the world? This book contains all this and much, much more.
It is like walking around a sculpture you already knew from pictures and finding out that it is three-dimensional and you can see it from angles you never thought of. Each topic, each question is not only presented in one way but with various approaches to help the reader gain a better understanding. Everyday experiences included in the book suddenly reveal a new sight on the principles of Aikido.
But what I like most about this book is that it approaches the art I love with a lot of humor without making fun of it.
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Format: Paperback
I received my copy of Carol's book earlier this month and read through it almost immediately, but I wanted to wait until I had time to digest it before writing a review.
Even though it has a light style, the book is dense with information. Her approach isn't the standard "Grab-here-push-there" martial arts instructional text. Neither is it a fluffy, feel good, visualize the white light and pretend the world is made of cotton candy book.
What does come through is a direct, vivid view of Aikido, with an almost childlike clarity and sense of wonder. After a few years around dojos, there is a tendency to become jaded. To see only what you have seen before, and to instantly categorize whatever is presented to you. By whatever means, Carol has never become jaded. Reading her book, I was able to remember the first time I stepped into a dojo, the odd stiff feel of my first dogi, the smells and textures and body language of the dojo. Aspects that seem so commonplace now.
It has been said that all of the secrets of Aikido are presented to you in the first weeks of class. Is there anything that can be more important, and more elusive than the razor sharp and bright awareness that was present when all of this was new?
The underlying theme throughout the book isn't the techniques, or the rituals of the dojo. It is about the "Do" of Aikido. Aikido as a path... a way of perceiving the world. A practice that isn't compartmentalized, but pervades business, social, physical, emotional, and yes...even spiritual interactions.
The quotes used in the book mainly came from the Aikido-L mailing list. The choices were well made.
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Format: Paperback
I've read quite a few books on martial arts now but "Aikido Exercises for Teaching and Training" has to be one of the most engaging and entertaining. There are no mystifying black and white photos of two angry looking guys throwing each other to the floor with a technique wich has a six word Japanese name. Instead there is a great deal of reassuring, level-headed honesty about what Aikido is and,equally impotant, what it is not,as well as some very workable training tips. There are quotes from master Aikidoists,as well as thoughts on training,attidude and spirit from many areas outside the Aikido world. And the secret of becoming a master Aikidoist? Schifflett quotes Garrison Keeler," 90% of life is just turning up." All in all this is a highly imaginative, beautifully put- together and very informative book about Aikido-the martial art, and Aikido-the approach to every day life. Wonderful!
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