You be the judge! Nobuyuki Watanabe, 8th dan — Fake or real?

Nobuyuki Watanabe is an 8th dan instructor at the Aikikai Hombu Dojo in Tokyo, Japan appears in this video clips from the 1987 All-Japan Aikido Demonstration. He is known for his soft, no-touch style of aikido that leaves viewers scratching their heads about his technique. Watanabe Sensei’s unique aikido has come under close scrutiny and many deride his approach. Nonetheless, he is ranked 8th dan by the Aikikai Hombu Dojo and always elicits an enthusiastic response during the All-Japan event…

Click here to watch video


  1. Taking a lot of ukemi for Watanabe Sensei in the 1970’s got me in the best shape of my life. He would put me through my paces pretty intensely – to the point of me nearly passing out a few times. Things would get very subtle and included some of the no touch stuff – which as a training method to strengthen awareness and sensitivity was valuable.

    But to present aikido this way in a public demonstration I do not feel is helpful. As for the film clip – like most Aiki Kai demonstrations it is a more “art” than martial art.

Speak Your Mind