May
05

Superb weapon skills! Katori Shinto-ryu with Risuke Otake Sensei

This is a wonderful old video on Katori Shinto-ryu featuring Headmaster Risuke Otake Sensei. This is Japan’s oldest classical martial arts school. Otake Sensei, his son, and senior practitioners put on a superb demonstration of sections of the vast weapons curriculum of the school. The skill level displayed is quite extraordinary. Kata using the bokken, iaito, bo, naginata, etc. are shown. The live blade forms demonstrated by Otake Sensei at the 9:40 mark are amazing to behold!…

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May
05

We who have forgotten! “An Overview of Koichi Tohei’s Early Aikido Career”

Who is Koichi Tohei and why is he so important to an understanding of the development of aikido? Should he be unceremoniously deleted from aikido history due to past grievances or should he be given due credit for his role in the shaping of the art of aikido?…

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May
05

Technical mastery! Morihiro Saito Sensei performs ushirowaza

Morihiro Saito Sensei performs numerous ushirowaza (rear techniques) in this amazing video. He provides the name and then proceeds to demonstrate each technique in term in an incredible display of technical mastery. This video will give you an understanding of what is meant when it is said that Morihiro Saito Sensei had an encyclopedic memory!…

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May
04

Can you handle kicks? Jose Andrade Sensei demonstrates Aikido defenses against kicks and groundwork

This is an interesting video in which Jose Andrade Sensei of the Aikido Tenshinkai of Florida presents a number of approached to defenses against kicks and groundwork, topics seldom covered in dojo training…

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May
04

Magical! An artistic look at the Aikido of Christian Tissier by Matthieu Lemaire

This is an incredibly well edited clip featuring professional footage of Christian Tissier Sensei of France and Bruno Gonzalez Sensei. The work of videographer Matthieu Lemaire in editing this clip is every bit as impressive as the spectacular technique of Christian Tissier…

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May
04

Take the opponent’s mind! “Shoji Nishio’s dilemma… and his solution!”

Shoji Nishio began his aikido training at the end of 1951 when there was little activity at the Aikikai Hombu Dojo. Kisshomaru Ueshiba and Koichi Tohei, and a small cadre of relatively inexperienced instructors conducted classes. Although Nishio Sensei was captivated by aikido and the art of Founder Morihei Ueshiba, he felt disillusioned at the lack of martiality and weapons training at the central dojo. Being unable to get satisfactory answers to his questions, and absent weapons training, Nishio Sensei set out to crosstrain in other martial arts to fill the gaps…

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May
01

Kotegaeshi revived! Video in response to “The Biggest Mistake in Kotegaeshi” by Patrick Augé

On July 24, 2013, Stanley Pranin published a video describing what in his opinion is a major error commonly seen in the application of aikido’s kotegaeshi, a wrist turn throw. Patrick Augé Sensei of Yoseikan Budo based in Torrance, California prepared this video response titled “Aikido Kotegaeshi Theory” in which he explains different approaches to kotegaeshi from the Yoseikan Budo perspective…

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May
01

What does this mean? “Aikido: Property of the Ueshiba Family,” by Stanley Pranin

First of all, I think it would be safe to say that Morihei Ueshiba’s statements imply that it was his intention that aikido continue to develop according to his vision. It further implies that he trusted his son Kisshomaru – aikido’s Second Doshu – to carry on in his stead. By extension, the Aikikai Hombu Dojo may be regarded as the physical “home” of aikido, and the administrative and technical center of the art…

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May
01

I became Saito Sensei’s otomo… “Interview with Pat Hendricks” by Ikuko Kimura

I went back to America for nearly eight years then returned to Iwama for a number of months, and I continued going back frequently as a short-term uchideshi until 1988 when I decided to become a long-term uchideshi again, for the last time. I have made fifteen or sixteen visits to Iwama all together, but that was my fifth or sixth. I had already started my own dojo back in 1984, and I deliberately decided to leave it, turned it over to a friend and went back to Japan, where I stayed for about 18 months…

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Apr
30

First seen in 1935 film… “Kyoichi Inoue, 9th dan Yoshinkan Aikido, demonstrates ‘mysterious’ throw”

Kyoichi Inoue Sensei, 9th dan, demonstrates a spectacular technique first seen in the 1935 film of Morihei Ueshiba. Gozo Shioda Sensei of Yoshinkan Aikido would show it often in his demonstrations. Inoue Sensei here explains the fine points of making this technique work effectively…

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Apr
30

The art of forgiveness… Shoji Nishio: “Stand naturally and enter immediately when your opponent is about to move!”

Shoji Nishio Sensei chose the sometimes controversial path of not imitating the founder’s technique, but rather absorbing aikido’s essential principles and adapting them to the current cultural context. In this regard, his technique was constantly evolving as his technical understanding and skills improved. For this reason, Nishio’s aikido bore little resemblance to orthodox aikido exemplified by the Hombu approach that tended to be conservative in nature. “Budo must always reflect its surroundings. If it isn’t newer and stronger, it isn’t valid…

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Apr
30

Making violent situations less violent! Follow-up to “An End To Collusion,” by Tom Collings

I love the art of aikido and when lax, casual practice passes for harmony, and when training with effort and intensity is considered “violent” then we have surely lost the Founder’s Way. We have trivialized what is profound, and made superficial that which should have depth, the Founder’s earnest struggle to learn and understand, and find new possibilities in conflict. Our modern culture attempts to make everything light and easy, even O’Sensei’s work of a lifetime…

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