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  • feeling like a moron..

    How do you girls (particularly beginners like me) deal with making a really big mistake or doing something very embarressing during training? Could be anything.

    I myself have a very long history (way before kendo) of being the person you can count on to trip over, stand in dog doo, say the wrong thing, whatever, usually in front of lots of people. Im quite used to it now, and have carried this trait over to my kendo.

    For example, at the taikai on the weekend, during warmups, in front of the other club and senseis, instead of doing a big men cut at the end of highasuburi (sp?), my toe caught in my hakama and I did a tripping soccer smash and slide onto my knees and across the dojo floor (this happens quite often, and my hakama is actualy too short, clumsyness is it). Being the only person in white made sure everyone remembered it!

    Ill trip over, forget stuff, count the wrong numbers, you name it, all the time. It doesnt really bother me, I think everyone is used to it by now. I generally crack up laughing and carry on. I was a little embarressed to do that in front of other clubs though.

    So, the point of this thread is, how does stuff like this affect you? Do you laugh and keep going, or do you do the standard female reaction of thinking everyone is looking at you and mentally beat yourself up about it all night? (I know guys do this too, but some girls tend to take it a bit harder when they are already a minority)

  • #2
    i know that the general female mentality is the completely paranoid way that we all think everyone is looking at us and judging us - like going into a communal changing rooms and hiding under your towel when you get changed, when really all that is happening is that everyone else is being just as self conscious as you and are too busy worrying about the way they look instead of looking at you.

    same in the dojo - it seems to me that men are nowhere near as self conscious as us girls (although a male perspective on this would be appreciated). I know i've done stupid things and gone a lovely shade of puce as a result - seems like blokes don't have the same fears that everyone is looking.

    i don't know, but it's an interesting topic. what do the fellas think?

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    • #3
      Being self conscious isn't always bad, it can help you in training, make you take instruction faster.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Alison2805

        I myself have a very long history (way before kendo) of being the person you can count on to trip over, stand in dog doo, say the wrong thing, whatever, usually in front of lots of people. Im quite used to it now, and have carried this trait over to my kendo.

        Ill trip over, forget stuff, count the wrong numbers, you name it, all the time. It doesnt really bother me, I think everyone is used to it by now. I generally crack up laughing and carry on. I was a little embarressed to do that in front of other clubs though.
        Alison, i am not trying to be judgemental or mean spirited in my response to your question, but have you ever thought of putting a little more attention and concentration into your actions? i also have the tendency to let my mind wander and not pay the best attention. i am also sometimes too quick with my physical actions which leads me to trip, drop stuff, etc... But i've gotten to the point where i said, no, i'm not going to laugh it off anymore, especially in kendo where your slip ups affect and reflect on everyone you are training with. i decided to put more effort into paying attention to what i do and concentrating harder instead of spacing out. have you ever tried this instead of just blaming it on clumsiness and going on with life? if it embarrasses you then you should do something about it so you won't have to feel that way anymore. just a bit of kind advice, please don't take offense.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Lone Kitten
          i know that the general female mentality is the completely paranoid way that we all think everyone is looking at us and judging us - like going into a communal changing rooms and hiding under your towel when you get changed, when really all that is happening is that everyone else is being just as self conscious as you and are too busy worrying about the way they look instead of looking at you.
          Um, no. Male Locker Room etiquette is somewhat restrictive in this aspect. In there, we talk about you.
          Originally posted by Lone Kitten
          same in the dojo - it seems to me that men are nowhere near as self conscious as us girls (although a male perspective on this would be appreciated). I know i've done stupid things and gone a lovely shade of puce as a result - seems like blokes don't have the same fears that everyone is looking.
          There are other people looking? What are you lookin' at? We don't do "puce" or "mauve" either. Recall that we are the gender who decided that sometimes a ditch by the side of the road can be a perfectly good place to sleep?
          Originally posted by Lone Kitten
          i don't know, but it's an interesting topic. what do the fellas think?
          We don't do that to excess, either.

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          • #6
            same in the dojo - it seems to me that men are nowhere near as self conscious as us girls (although a male perspective on this would be appreciated).
            It has been my experience that men are every bit as self conscious as women. However, we are a lot more used to being laughed at! Men tend to respond to ridicule with anger rather than embarrassment. I've done well more than my share of stupid things in the dojo, and at Tai Kai in front of senior judges! Mainly I tend to just laugh at myself and move on, with some anger left over for messing up something that I shouldn't have. It seems to me that women tend to have a much harder time with the moving on part. (yes that's a stereotype!)

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            • #7
              hmm.... interesting. See, women are always sure that someone is looking at them - using the changing room example, if a girl thinks she has a fat bum, she'll be worrying that everyone in there will be looking at her and thinking "my god... she has a fat ass". When in reality, there just as conscious!

              and pgsmith... if you can't laugh at yourself what can you do? that's what i always say (esp after a rather embarrassing incident at a re enatment where i knocked my lieutenant's fiancee out with my musket barrel - oops!)

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              • #8
                ahahhahahaaaaaaaa.......yeeeah...well, i'm pretty accident prone. I can't count how many times I've turned red in the face because of that... For me I just think, "Of course..." sigh, and then show up next practice. I've always played sports, so the changeroom thing doesn't really apply to me because I'm used to it. Though, my clumsiness has made me more aware of where my limbs are at when i'm paying attention, so maybe some good has come of it. ...or at least, I tell myself that. XD

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Lone Kitten
                  hmm.... interesting. See, women are always sure that someone is looking at them - using the changing room example, if a girl thinks she has a fat bum, she'll be worrying that everyone in there will be looking at her and thinking "my god... she has a fat ass". When in reality, there just as conscious!
                  True, but most of that will get out of the way as time goes by.

                  Say, you are highly unlikely to hold the bokuto on the wrong hand or up-side-down with a few years in practice (okay morons do exist, but just an example).

                  My gym is a shared facility of a big complex hosting major concerts and such. Now I got very much used to women in the toilet queue looking at me while I am going half-naked changing next to them (I know they do as there is a huge mirror in front of me!!). As long as I don't care anymore!

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                  • #10
                    No worries, I do embarrasing stuff a lot too. Usually what I do in that case is to brush myself off and get right back into it. Treating it like a big deal only draws attention to it and makes it a big deal. Trust me, the other people at the taikai were concentrating on themselves.

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                    • #11
                      Asking the question I just say I'm sorry and move on.

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                      • #12
                        It's a shame that it happens. The men make just as many mistakes but I guess we're used to having a poker face.

                        If it's any consolation, I think that women make the better Iaidoka (especially at first) as they don't overemphasise the cuts like a lot of men can do. Very graceful

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                        • #13
                          Its good to know that most of you girls do the same sort of thing where you just laugh it off and keep going. I think going to boarding school got rid of a lot of embarressment in lockerrooms for me. I do know some people who wouldnt be able to handle the whole idea of wearing bogu and making lots of noise. Kiai was the hardest thing for me to get into doing, did any of you other girls have trouble with that? Im trying to encourage one of the beginners (the only girl in her group) to kiai louder, she gets very embarressed.

                          Nochi-no-tsuki, dont worry, no offence taken!! One of the reasons I took kendo is because I thought it would help me to focus and not be so scatter-brained. I never zone out, or not pay attention, I just tend to find myself a little behind the 8ball at times. The more nervous I am, the worse it gets. And trust me, Ive tried EVERYTHING to try to fix it. From postit notes all over the house, meditation, strange diets, etc. Its something everyone in my family does. For example, every morning when I go to work, by the time I get downstairs to the car, I will realise Ive forgotten something and have to go upstairs again.... every morning...

                          It is getting better at training, and Im sure most people dont notice half the stuff I do!! It takes a LOT to get me embarressed, so I cope with it quite well. Ive always done well at sports and stuff, thats never been a problem. But like you say, I really dont want it to reflect badly on the club or distract the people Im training with. That was the only reason I was embarressed at the taikai, it looks bad for my sensei.

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                          • #14
                            ...feel like i'm reading the bridget jones' diary kendo version... (avoids flying objects from angry girls).

                            i guess i'm sort of used to being the center of attention sometimes.... when my sensei whacks me in the head or yells at me for doing something wrong, lol. ouch, it's ok girls. if this happens to you, or if you trip and fall ungracefully don't take it to heart. think you can always do something awesome and/or impressive to make it up for it and be remembered by

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Alison2805
                              Kiai was the hardest thing for me to get into doing, did any of you other girls have trouble with that? Im trying to encourage one of the beginners (the only girl in her group) to kiai louder, she gets very embarressed.
                              I'm an absolute beginner in kendo (~2months, only once a week) and just yesterday my sempai tried to get me to kiai louder+longer+steadier... It's very hard for me, I'm not the person to scream around usually...
                              At first I was unsure about it but now I'm trying to just do what they tell me and not to think how it might look+sound...

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