I had an interesting conversation with a number of Systema practitioners regarding what type of training is the most effective — personal training, regular classes, small seminars or big seminars. Though this certainly was not a scientific study by any means, we were all on the same page and came up with virtually identical ratios.
They were as follows:
1 = 3 = 15 =40
ONE hour of individual lessons (private lessons) = THREE hours of class time = FIFTEEN hours of small seminar (less than 50) training = FORTY hours of large seminars (51 or more) training.
The rational behind this thinking is that the more one on one time you get with a quality instructor, the more opportunities you get to make personalized corrections and adjustments. I have found this statement to be a truism in my training. Whenever I had private lessons with my Instructor, I found my training greatly improved and made more progress during these times than ever before.
Conversely, though I thoroughly enjoy seminars with 100 people, they were more of a “vacation” of sorts. It was great to see the masters at work, connect with friends and make new friends. But a week later, I was hard pressed to remember 2 or 3 things that I learned or corrections I needed to make. I do recommend large seminars for other reasons but if you really, really want to improve, it is the small sessions that make the difference.
What has been your experience? What ratio have you found?