Brian Kagen pick: “Tetsutaka Sugawara’s Aikido/Taijiquan combined form”

“Assuming they have supplemental training this is very nice. I can clearly see the parallels in application compared to Bagua.”

Tetsutaka Sugawara was born in Hokkaido in 1941. In 1960, he began Aikido at the Hombu Dojo, Tokyo, under O-Sensei Morihei Ueshiba, founder of Aikido. In 1961, he became uchideshi under O-Sensei at the Ibaraki Dojo.

In 1964, he returned to Tokyo and entered Chuo University. In 1973, he established Minato Research and Publishing Co. (currently Sugawara Martial Arts Institute, Inc.) In 1975, he entered the Tenshin Shoden Katori Shinto Ryu recieving the ‘kyoshi’ instructor’s license in 1986.

April 1992, introduced Aikido to Shanghai Institute of Physical Education, Beijing University of Medical Science. November 1992, received Kyoshi-license of Okinawan Goju-ryu Karatedo by Yasuichi Miyagi. June 1993, introduced Aikido to Wuhan Institute of Physical Education, Fujian University of Traditional Chinese Medical Science in China. May 1995, received Aikido 7th Dan by Kisshomaru Ueshiba. Introduced Aikido to Chengdu Institute of Physical Education in China. Received the Lecturer’s License of Shanghai Institute of P.E.

Brian Kagen is an avid web researcher with a particular interest in martial arts. His training background includes both judo and aikido. He has contributed hundreds of article links over the years for AJ readers.

Click here to view video clip.


  1. The clip looks very nice and I can see it being very useful to generate and check flow, connection and “ki usage”.

    One question – do you know if it is a fixed kata, or is it more freestyle? (The fact that Part 1/2/3/4 in the clip seems to suggest a kata, but maybe they are editing artefacts).

  2. In 2003, Sugawara Sensei introduced the Taichi style Aikido 42 Forms that he had recently created. Sensei began by telling us that he had the idea to create a Tai-chi style kata using Aikido techniques over 10 years ago. The music played by Mrs. Shing Yen-Ling during her Taichi demonstrations the previous year had inspired Sugawara Sensei to believe that perhaps he could finally create the Aikido kata. Sensei woke in the middle of the night and went downstairs to his dojo where he began to invent his kata. The kata, which is a series of Aikido techniques, was formed in just over 2 days and with input from Mrs. Shing the kata is now a reality.

  3. The 4 kata are all fixed. Although, in practice, one can easily feel the multiple possibilities each movement presents. The best thing about this series is that one can (and often does) spend an entire month using the techniques employed in the kaeshi waza in regular practice. And that is the point, not just to learn another kata, but to be able to apply the substance of that form. I personally have been doing these kata for about four years, and I learn something new every time I do them. Fantastic stuff.

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