Announcement

Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

Easy come, easy go...

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse
X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Easy come, easy go...

    Does your dojo leader (or yourself) ever feel frustrated after seeing all those enthusiastic newcomers ..... and 99% dropped out after a few weeks/months?

    Do you think that their effort is wasted?
    And most importantly, has anyone come up with an idea to make more beginners stay? (Has anyone done a survey asking "hey why do you leave?")


  • #2
    i would say that people are drawn into kendo (and probably most martial arts - my brother in law runs a kung Fu club and reports the same thing) with unrealistic expectations.

    the modern world leads us to expect things to be easy and quick to learn, and kendo is difficult, and takes years and years to master.

    people think they will be samurai in 6 months, find out that they won't and wander off. there is no harm in it - how would people find out if something is for them if not by trying it?

    this forum is full of people like me, who love kendo, and yet find it endlessly frustrating and difficult, and sometimes unrewarding. i am sometimes amazed that so many stick with it.

    Comment


    • #3
      As I said in another thread I ended up as top dog in my dojo when the three yudansha had to quit. Not being shodan yet it was and is very difficult to teach. Also very difficult to learn when I dont have any sempai in the dojo. I go to other cities to train of course but still its hard.
      So when everybody quits after half a year its really though not to give up and close the dojo.
      The people who quit after a week or two I dont mind about, but people who quit when they just begun learning how to do basics so I actually can have more advanced training sessions and not just do suburi and such all the time makes me really frustrated.
      Its been hard since 1998 when the yudansha quit but now the dojo has a new small group of comitted kendoka.

      I dont think it matters all that much to bigger dojos but for the many small dojos without a real sensei it is a problem. Well, well, what is there to do? Just keep struggling on i guess.

      Comment


      • #4
        I think the teachers kind of get jaded to it so they just don't care

        Comment


        • #5
          Matthew Langdon hit the nail on the head -- newcomers often have contorted expectations about martial arts.

          The attrition you describe is just a matter of fact. Kendo is not for everyone. Getting people to "stay" is like enticing them to do something they don't really feel like doing. Why expend that effort, especially when in the end, it's futile?

          I've seen many different people pass through my dojo doors and have learned that there is nothing you can do to encourage people to stay if they do not want to in the first place.

          At the same time, I'd like to think that the time spent teaching these people basics before they leave is not wasted because you've helped them realize that kendo is not for them, which is just as important as helping someone realize that kendo is to become their life-long endeavor. Besides, you can consider such teaching a learning experience for yourself. If nothing else, it teaches patience.

          Comment


          • #6
            well, i notice that many people jump into kendo or even other martal arts is only for fun. I know quite a few people just start it for fun, and drop out when they relise that it's all hard work, and some time painful. Of course there are exceptions, but we are not taking about those people I assume..... =\

            Well, in this case of kendo.... i think it's will lead into the same topic / thread as "Why kendo"....

            anyway... that is what i think.... but i could be wrong

            Comment


            • #7
              looked at from another point of view, it can be hard to keep your motivation up.

              i have reached the point where i can see how far short i fall of where and how i would wish to be, and i am going home with bruises (a lovely red livid one on my hand from kote practise last night, and bruises on my side from Do cuts that didn't hit the Do), and sometimes you think, "why am i doing this?"

              Why then I stick at it when others don't is a bit of a mystery.

              Comment


              • #8
                I have no problem with beginners leaving after they discover kendo isn't for them. Not all sports are for everyone and you can't expect everyone to like it. Besides, I'm at a University dojo and we're use to people having to leave after they graduate (we just lost three dedicated members this year).

                In fact, tonight is the free practice for those who would like to try kendo on for size (tons of people show up so it's a mad house). We hope to get as many people as possible but we know that 80% won't stay past the second or third week of practices. I wonder how many of them will stay on this year?

                What bothers me more is people who continue to do kendo but in a half-hearted fashion (i.e. practice once every two weeks or less). They earn rankings (and the right to use bogu) but don't justify them through practice. We still have to find them a bogu to use (the gym rents them out) but they stay on the shelves unused for long periods. Does anyone else have this type of problem?
                Beginners who quit before they know they'll get bored are preferable to this type of practitionner any day.

                Comment


                • #9
                  What bothers me more is people who continue to do kendo but in a half-hearted fashion (i.e. practice once every two weeks or less).
                  I was this kind of "practitioner" when I started. I didn't discover kendo until my final year and a half at college, by which point my schedule was already overflowing and there simply wasn't room for a greater commitment to kendo. If there had been some sort of rule like "you must come at least once a week or else bogu priveleges will be revoked," then my kendo career would have been very short indeed. Fortunately, I was allowed to continue in my "half-hearted fashion," and a year and a half after graduation my interest in kendo led me to Japan, where I now attend practices a lot more often (though still not as often as I'd like -- my schedule is still too full). So don't give up yet on those seemingly uncommitted folks -- there may still be hope for them...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Oups...

                    Crap. I probably should have been more precise. I fully understand the problems with schedules and other obligations besides kendo (can't let it control your life after all). Midterms, end of terms, research projects, work, girlfriend(s), etc are all more important than practice time. I'm fortunate to have started kendo in grad. school so I have a lot of free time (my schedule is very flexible). Its just that some people have the free time and still don't show up very often. I'm probably a bit more affected by this than most because I manage the equipment.

                    There is no rule about not showing up and losing your bogu in our dojo (as far as I know). However, the final decision as to who gets one and who doesn't lies with sensei (I've yet to see him take that privilege away).

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hmnnn, we get about 10 or so beginners during each new semester and usually less than 5 will remain at the end.

                      This is okay but what gets me is the ppl who buy all the gear eg. gi, hakama and bogu and then quit. What a waste....

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        don't knock it - they are a great source of cheap bogu.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I think that I came in with some unrealistic expectations, but I quikly learned that there is a lot more to kendo than when I had swordfights as a kid, but for me it all comes down to commitment, and how much effort (mental and physical) you are willing to put in.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I'll invite myself to be burned beyond recognition by blaming the overenthusiasm of beginners on several things which will no doubt win me even more detractors (is that possible?):

                            firstly, the difficulty of the martial art in general. previous posters got that right. people today have short attention spans, and are unwilling to try. having been educated in a school system that doesn't force people to make an effort, or even try to work hard, most people coast through life, and give up on anything that isn't smooth sailing.

                            secondly: the great romantic exoticism of the 'orient'. We in the west have exoticized Japan, and to a lesser extent China, Korea and the rest of Asia. The difference with Japan is that the Japanese buy into it too, they're convinced that they're the most unique, original and astonishing people on earth, may I quote the remark that I have heard from almost every Japanese person I've ever met? No? Too bad, I'm going to anyway. "O, isn't Japan so strange? We Japanese are so different from everyone else." This complicity just amplifies the 'mysterious and wonderful Japan' (that has no central heating and ... i'll just stop there). Martial arts offer the opportunity to be 'exotic' and 'mysterious' by embracing the 'great cultural difference' between Japan and North America. (Great cultural difference, my foot.)

                            thirdly, anime. I am so bloody tired of hearing the dying rattle of a cherished illusion when some otaku sobs, "But, what you're saying can't be true! I saw it in an anime!" Anime is the great evangelical medium. Gullible westerners watch it, and think they're seeing Japan. This may come as a shock to you, but anime bears as much resemblance to Japan as Hollywood does to North America. If I'm asked once more "Do they have big robots in Japan?" or "Do all the girls have long legs?" I'm going to rip out the throat of whoever says it. Bringing this back on topic about martial arts... otaku see martial arts in anime, and it looks cool by association. They take it up in a moment of whimsy, and throw it away again, when it becomes too difficult.

                            Lastly, some people quit because they don't have the money to continue. We all know how expensive it can be to pursue kendou.

                            </rant>

                            c

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Confound
                              I'll invite myself to be burned beyond recognition by blaming the overenthusiasm of beginners on several things which will no doubt win me even more detractors (is that possible?):
                              Oh yes indeed - would you like me to arrange some?




                              [snip]
                              Anime is the great evangelical medium. Gullible westerners watch it, and think they're seeing Japan.
                              Yeah, you're talking about Neon Genesis Evangelion right?
                              wow. I loved that series. It was so cool. I wonder if they really have those huge robots in Japan. Or cute purple-haired chicks like Misato. Hey - do all the girls have long legs? How many people live in Neo-Tokyo? Is that like - north of tokyo or something?


                              This may come as a shock to you, but anime bears as much resemblance to Japan as Hollywood does to North America. If I'm asked once more "Do they have big robots in Japan?" or "Do all the girls have long legs?" I'm going to rip out the throat of whoever says it.
                              c
                              oops.

                              A

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X