Introducing yourself to your training partners, getting to know them personally, and developing healthy relationships with them will maximize the likelihood that you can learn something new every time you train together. Throughout civilization for thousands of years the martial arts have held the notoriety of being an extraordinary form of exercise for a person’s body, mind, and spirit. Aikido works to develop harmony of the body, mind and spirit as one. Aikido students will learn how to develop these connections without isolating any of the three forces from each other. Students are tested by their own ability to be present in the moment when training with a partner or a group of people. Students new and old need to work together to keep each other accountable while training so that we can all train hard to achieve our own goals and also make an effort to better ourselves a little bit every time we step onto the mat for practice.
One of the four core principles of Aikido is to develop your positive mind. Aikido does focus on physical development and good students of Aikido train hard to condition their bodies to their utmost potential. However, like many things in life, the mental aspect is the real obstacle that we work to develop so that we can evolve and grow beyond the limits of our physical bodies. When we have a partner to train with over the course of our development as martial artists, we can monitor our progress with greater accuracy because our practice becomes a dialogue. Developing this dialogue requires great patience and respect so that we can all grow at our own pace. Each and every interaction that we have with our training partners is an opportunity to step outside of our comfort zone and move onto the next level.
In fact, to sum up the whole matter, it is possible for us to grow as individuals only if we are able to communicate effectively with those that we interact with. The best martial artists are those that decide to take their practice seriously. It takes time and dedication to develop good qualities like patience, discipline, and positivity. Being a martial artist is a way of life. You do not need to reinvent the wheel in order to learn martial arts. You just need to show up to class with an open mind that is ready to learn. The dojo is a place where students can grow beyond what they think they are capable of. When people come together with a positive attitude and a sense of discipline, people will naturally help each other to become the best possible version of themselves. Instead of students competing with each other to beat each other, Aikido is an art that allows students to learn from each other and grow together so that we can achieve the goals that we set for ourselves.