“We, as fairly dedicated martial artists, should understand why we train. Even if we never found ourselves having to “explain” aikido to our friends and family, we should be able to articulate, at least to ourselves, just what keeps us coming back to the mat day after day. Examined from the perspective of a “normal” contemporary American life, what ever that might be like, we have to admit that what we do – dressing in funny foreign clothes and attacking each other with wooden sticks, for instance – is pretty unconventional.
But we do it anyway, despite, or perhaps on account of, Aikido’s unconventionality. And we do it as often as our bodies allow us to, and sometimes more often than we should. Aikido is not a drug, though some have jokingly argued that it is nevertheless an addiction. So, again, why do we train?”
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