Andrew posted about one of the classic sticky issues in the “martial arts industry”:
Random question: how important do you think it is for a teacher to be as good or better than his/her students when teaching them something? I don’t have any students per se, but I do try to help people out when I see them making the same mistakes I do. Sometimes I feel somewhat like a hypocrite telling someone to do something that I am not able to do myself.
On the flip side, I have a hard time taking instruction from someone who can’t do what they’re telling me to, or who does it really crappy (I’m not including older people of course). I am more than willing to concede that it is just my arrogance that produces this attitude and most of the time I try to glean whatever good advice is there to be had, but I honestly feel like I will always need someone better than me to instruct me. Now, this has not been a problem thus far since all the instructors I’ve had at Tech can rather effortlessly outdo me in pretty much anything they instruct me on – I like that, it keeps me humble and gives me something to work towards.
Let me ask the same thing a different way. How good do you have to be at doing taido in order to competently instruct it? Knowing the theory behind stuff is all good and needed, but theory did nothing for me last night trying to learn hangetsu ate – I didn’t really get it until I saw Bryan do it.
I know there’s no real measuring stick as to how “good” someone is at doing taido, but hopefully you get the idea of what I’m asking, even if I’m not expressing it as clearly as I would like.
I have reposted my reply as a comment below… – Andy.