The interview below with Noriaki (Yoichiro) Inoue, nephew of Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba, has been selected from the extensive archives of the Online Aikido Journal. We believe that an informed readership with knowledge of the history, techniques and philosophy of aikido is essential to the growth of the art and its adherence to the principles espoused by Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba.
When I met Takeda Sensei and he told me to practice with him I refused to do so saying I didn’t like his type of training. Takeda Sensei really wanted to teach me. My father and Ueshiba’s father talked things over back in Tanabe and built a dojo for him. Because Morihei said he wanted to study the art in Shirataki, my father and Ueshiba’s father built a dojo and Takeda Sensei was invited to teach. I think at that time my uncle was already over 30. Ueshiba’s father (Yoroku) was a great person and also very strong. I don’t think anyone, not even sumo wrestlers, were stronger than him. He too was fond of the martial arts and this was why he understood Morihei’s strong desire to study the art and agreed to help him. Although I don’t know how much, they sent money to Takeda Sensei every month. Our fathers certainly gave what Sensei needed for the rest of his life and sent him cash every month. My father also thought that it would be nice to have a budo man from our family. Ueshiba’s father did it out of affection towards his child.
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