Feb
08

How to find things at Aikido Journal

A reader wrote in recently asking if we could index the video clips in our archives to make it easier to find a specific clip. If we were to approach things that way, the solution to this problem would involve the allocation of resources in the form of programming to provide this capability.

The difficulty with creating a proprietary solution for a feature such as this is not simply that a programer’s services would be required. The more complexity that is introduced into the website, the more difficult it becomes to maintain it and make later changes. Also, sometimes when new features are added, especially of an ad hoc nature, something elsewhere in a website can break creating sort of a domino effect.
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Feb
07

“The Challenge of Not Competing” by Stefan Stenudd from aikiweb.com

“Aikido is non-competitive. That’s easy to say. The practice is not about defeating an opponent, but about both participants being victorious by finding a truly peaceful solution and growing as human beings in the process. That, too, is easy to say.

Still, there’s a lot of competing going on in aikido. Numerous aikido students hurry along the way in an effort to surpass their fellow trainees, in skills as well as grades, eager to take a teaching role when working with whatever partner, reluctant to learn as equals.

But it doesn’t stop at the individual level. It happens that dojos compete as well, to attract more students from the streets, maybe even hoping to lure some over from the other dojos. And the rings on the water widen. Groups of dojos, connected by little more than a common organization or by their definition of a style of aikido, might also show the hostility of a porcupine towards other groups or the outside aikido world as a whole, insisting that none is closer to the truth.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
06

“Take The Strength Out” by Nev Sagiba

“Take the strength out! Take the strength out!” the old Chinaman kept yelling at his young pupil in training as he easily whipped the strong young man from pillar to post..

In the old days the “soft stylists” of China were feared. And with good reason. Their opponents usually died.

Why this? Why take the strength out? And when? The when is in training so you can discover efficiency, ki, unity and centre.

Why? Because if you don’t you will continue to move crudely and merely mimic form without gaining understanding.
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Feb
06

“Many Teachers” by Gregor Erdmann

“The principles of Aikido, as with enlightenment is an elusive beast. Practitioners spend their entire life walking the path with the dream of attaining Satori.

As we all walk distinct paths, it is nigh impossible to find a Sensei which holds all the teachings and guidance which will allow us to obtain enlightenment. Even if such a teacher exists, it would be foolish to not venture outside and experience the view of others. In any case, it is enjoyable to listen to other teacher’s tales, and it is a way to support others in their various quests.”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
05

“Interview with Koho Yamano Sensei” by Jim Noriega

“Every year, I participate in the Zen Nihon Aikido embutaikai- the All Japan Aikido Demonstration. Many onlookers say the same thing. “Mr. Yamano, is your style based on Ki?” I say “No”.

* What is your style based on?

Keep moving! O Sensei said “Ugokeba sorega waza to naru.” This means that technique is created out of movement.”

Click here to read entire article.

Feb
05

“Aikido Bloopers” by youtube.com

“Also known as the “Dance of the Sugar Plum Deshis”. Just to show that not all martial artists take themselves too seriously. We can’t always be as graceful as Sensei.

This video is a long time coming — a belated Christmas gift to my fellow students at Open Sky Aikikai (formerly the North Winnipeg Aikikai) Aikido club.”

Please click here to watch the video.

Feb
04

Aikido training in Las Vegas: “The Garage Dojo” by Stanley Pranin

On two occasions during my career in aikido I have set up and taught out of garage dojos. The first experience was around 1974 in Monterey, California when our aikido class spent several months in my home garage in transition between store-front facilities.

This little dojo was affectionately dubbed “The Aiki Lab” and I can remember finding it extremely convenient to train because I could literally walk outside the door from the house and be inside the dojo. The mats consisted of “ethafoarm” which is an industrial packing material that was popular in those days as a dojo flooring.
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Feb
04

Hawaiian Focus television interview with Yoshioka Sensei

“We have covered many forms of Japanese martial arts on Hawaiian Focus, and tonight we shall pay a visit to the Nuuanu Aikido Club. We visited the Nuuanu YMCA on Pali Highway, where the Advanced Class was in session and Chief Instructor Sadao Yoshioka had the students do a number of demonstrations. On the Aikido segment, we will try to bring out the philosophy behind the art, and how it differs from other forms of martial arts. Aikido was introduced in Japan in 1925 by Morihei Uyeshiba. Uyeshiba taught that “the secret of Aikido is to harmonize ourselves with the movements of the universe, to bring ourselves into accord with the universe itself.” A number of techniques are identified by their Japanese terms. Though the language, culture, and discipline may sound foreign, a cross-culture of students are enrolled in Yoshioka’s class.
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Feb
03

“Reps vs. Do it for a While” by Patrick Parker

“I told the story the other day of how my teacher would have to perform 25 reps left and right of each groundwork technique before his teacher would show him the next thing. There’s sort of two schools of thought on drilling and repetitions. Some folks define an explicit goal – a number of reps – for their practice. Other teachers say, “Here’s this drill. Let’s do it for a while.”

Both methods have advantages and disadvantages. Setting an explicit goal for reps tends to make you learn personal discipline and endurance. With the ‘do it for a while’ method it can be too easy to say, “Whew, that was a good one! What’s next?”

Please click here to read entire article.

Feb
03

Video clip of Hiroshi Tada at the 2004 Aikido All-Japan Demo

Hiroshi Tada Sensei at the 2004 Aikikai All-Japan demonstration in Tokyo.

The Aikido Journal archives now include more than 100 video clips and 800 articles in twenty different languages. We are constantly adding new videos, articles and translations in our effort to document aikido and related disciplines past and present. If you would like to support us in this effort by taking out a subscription to the Online Aikido Journal we welcome you to do so by clicking this link. Remember that if you subscribe or renew for two years you will now receive the Aiki News / Aikido Journal Archival DVD absolutely free of charge. Don’t pass up this special offer!

Click here to view video clip.

Feb
02

Dojo Art available to embellish your dojo

We would like to bring to your attention that we have a very nice selection of photo portraits and posters of some of the most important figures in aikido. Our most popular item is, not surprisingly, a beautiful portrait of Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba for use as a shomen photo for dojos or personal display. We also have beautiful photos of Morihiro Saito, Gozo Shioda, and Shoji Nishio available.

Another fascinating poster is our Chronological Chart depicting the names of more than 60 famous students of the Founder Morihei Ueshiba organized according to their historical periods. This is a very informative document and will be a conversation piece in your dojo. Be sure to double click on the images in the catalog to get a much larger view of the item. Please have a look at our selection here.

Feb
02

Brian Kagen pick: “Who Sez O’Sensei Was Wise!,” from aikiweb.com

“Many of the people I talk to about Aikido and who are not involved with Aikido really throw this question at me often. After telling them superficially about the spiritual thoughts of O’Sensei they say, stuff like, who says O’Sensei knew what he was talking about. They are implying that I don’t question him or his wisdom. They think I am make an assumption that his stuff is true and full of wisdom. I am a fool for not thinking he could be B.S.ing and I am fool for it.

That usually gets me thinking stuff like this. When we really get into Aikido do we just accept O’Sensei as being supremely wise, and he speaks the truth without question? I was watching this show about this cult that was started in the 60′s by a Baptist or some type of minister. he attracted a lot of followers, it got really big. And lasted for decades. It was all about love and stuff that was similar to what O’Sensei said. And plus Aikido got big in the US in the 60′s. The people in the cult really where into what this minister turn cult leader who was telling them stuff to believe that was a mix of Christianity, the stuff of the 60′s movement- free love etc, and western philosophy. His huge group of followers ate it up, and his cult grew to thousands all over the place.
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