“Aikido Classics” — Five Aikido Masters on One DVD!

Would you like to see the most famous Aikido figures of all time demonstrating their technique in their primes? This incredible program, titled Aikido Classics, Vol.:1: Postwar Greats, contains rare video footage of aikido’s greats: Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba, Second Doshu Kisshomaru Ueshiba (son and successor of the Founder), Gozo Shioda (Founder of Yoshinkan Aikido), Koichi Tohei (former Chief Instructor of the Aikikai Hombu Dojo who later established the Ki Society), and Morihiro Saito, one of aikido’s preeminent technicians and author of many important books on the art.

Below is a detailed look at the amazing contents of this one-of-a-kind DVD:

Contents of Aikido Classics, Vol. 1: Postwar Greats:

Morihei Ueshiba: Brief film clip of the Founder O-Sensei from c. 1954 displaying his incredibly dynamic technique. Appearing taking falls are Gozo Shioda, Koichi Tohei and Morihiro Saito. Technical mastery beyond description!

Morihei Ueshiba: Demonstration of O-Sensei at a Commemorative Demonstration of the Johoku Branch dojo in 1962. Also features Nobuyoshi Tamura, Seiichi Sugano, Mitsunari Kanai, and Terry Dobson.

Gozo Shioda: The founder of Yoshinkan Aikido, one of O-Sensei’s standout prewar students, gives an unforgettable demonstration for a film documentary shot in 1958. The top names of the early years of the Yoshinkan also appear including Kiyoyuki Terada, Shigeho Tanaka, Tadataka Matsuo, Kyoichi Inoue and Takashi Kushida. Full of fast-paced action!

Koichi Tohei: A class and demonstration by the then Chief Instructor of the Aikikai Hombu Dojo for a team of American filmmakers in 1962. Tohei Sensei leads the class in “ki” exercises followed by an outstanding exhibition of free-style and randori techniques. He later went on to found his own style of aikido emphasizing his ki concepts. This is Koichi Tohei at his best!

Kisshomaru Ueshiba: The late Doshu’s technique is noted for its soft, circular movements, and numerous Aikikai shihan have been influenced by his approach. He is seen here conducting a class and also demonstrates graceful free-style and multiple-attack techniques. This 1962 film offers a rare inside look at the Aikikai Hombu Dojo of the early 1960s. Lots of memorable action!

Morihiro Saito: This is the famous NHK film documentary shot on location in Iwama in 1973. Saito Sensei was the Chief Instructor of the Iwama Dojo and Guardian of the Aiki Shrine from 1969 until his passing in 2002. The power and precision of the art of Saito Sensei is captured on film in vivid detail. His mastery of empty-handed and weapon techniques is legendary. The final action scene is classic!

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