Jun
30

What does this mean? “Aikido: Property of the Ueshiba Family,” by Stanley Pranin

First of all, I think it would be safe to say that Morihei Ueshiba’s statements imply that it was his intention that aikido continue to develop according to his vision. It further implies that he trusted his son Kisshomaru – aikido’s Second Doshu – to carry on in his stead. By extension, the Aikikai Hombu Dojo may be regarded as the physical “home” of aikido, and the administrative and technical center of the art…

Click here to read more

Jun
30

Emphasis on economy of movement… Stanley Pranin demonstrates a setup for ikkyo through yonkyo techniques from katatedori

In this video, Stanley Pranin demonstrates morotedori kokyuho at seminar in San Miguel de Allende June 14-15, 2014. Morotedori kokyuho is one of three exercises that Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba always practiced in the classes he taught. Here Stanley Pranin demonstrates a set up of uke where nage takes a short step backward while uke is grabbing. This maneuver weakens uke’s posture making it much easier for nage to execute the throw. Paying attention to such details can have a dramatic affect on the effectiveness of one’s aikido…

Click here to watch video

Jun
30

Words of the Master: Interview with Morihei Ueshiba and Kisshomaru Ueshiba

[Aikido] can be said to be the true martial art. The reason for this is that it is a martial art based on universal truth. This Universe is composed of many different parts, and yet the Universe as a whole is united as a family and symbolizes the ultimate state of peace. Holding such a view of the Universe, aikido cannot be anything but a martial art of love. It cannot be a martial art of violence…

Click here to read more

Jun
27

7th dan from New York: “Harvey Konigsberg talks about the importance of using your center while executing aikido techniques”

This video of Harvey Konigsberg Sensei was filmed during a seminar he conducted in October, 2011 at Aikido of Central New York. Konigsberg Shihan focuses on the importance of using your center while demonstrating techniques…

Click here to watch video

Jun
27

First seen in 1935 film: “Kyoichi Inoue, 9th dan Yoshinkan Aikido, demonstrates ‘mysterious’ throw”

Kyoichi Inoue Sensei, 9th dan, demonstrates a spectacular technique first seen in the 1935 film of Morihei Ueshiba. Gozo Shioda Sensei of Yoshinkan Aikido would show it often in his demonstrations. Inoue Sensei here explains the fine points of making this technique work effectively…

Click here to watch video

Jun
27

Hint… O-Sensei didn’t decide! Minoru Hirai: “How Aikido got its name!”

The Ueshiba family house was attached to the dojo, and Morihei himself quite often, although irregularly, appeared on the mat. O’Sensei represented the ultimate authority for all of the uchideshi. Through his demeanor, he personified all of the qualities a young Japanese used to strive for at the time…

Click here to read more

Jun
26

Both spectacular and funny! “Guillaume Erard: The Amazing World of Aikido Ukemi”

This is a delightful video containing scores of spectacular, funny and unusual falls taken by publisher and aikidoka Guillaume Erard during seminars and demonstrations. This film is a tribute by Erard to a number of his aikido teachers, starting with Christian Tissier Sensei, who have guided him during his aikido career…

Click here to watch video

Jun
26

What’s special about Aikido… “A Legacy from the Past, a Vision for the Future” by Stanley Pranin

As you know, our concern in Aikido Journal is with aikido as a body of techniques and a tool for achieving the peaceful resolution of conflict. This means that our starting point is the art formulated by Morihei Ueshiba, with its inseparable humanistic premises. This is the standard by which we measure the content of technique and the morality of behavior. The aims of aikido also constitute our vision for a future world in which peaceful interaction in society is achieved through the presence of a skilled sword that remains sheathed. Strength, skill, and foresight are required to forestall violence, not merely a “desire for peace”…

Click here to read more

Jun
26

Basics lead to aiki… Seigo Okamoto’s Daito-ryu Roppokai

There is a technique which becomes really soft, that is, true aiki. You have to execute this technique not just with your fingers, but as though you were breathing with your whole body. You harmonize your breathing with your opponent’s. By doing so, he becomes stiff and his body becomes a part of yours. Thus, you are able to move without feeling much of his weight…

Click here to read more

Jun
25

Gentle politeness of maintaining proper maai: “Is Aikido a traditional martial art,” by Francis Takahashi

One need not prepare to be a parachutist when one is on solid ground. One need not prepare for space flight if not an astronaut. One need not prepare for Phd exams, if one is not going for a degree. One need not prepare for a fight, if one resolves never to be near one or can walk away from one…

Click here to read more

Jun
25

Morihei’s base in Osaka… “Historical photo: Time-machine back to 1935″ by Stanley Pranin

This is a rare photo of unusually high quality depicting Morihei Ueshiba in Osaka with the leading figures of his Asahi News dojo. The photo is almost certainly from 1935 judging by Morihei’s visage, and the fact that it was taken at a time prior to Sokaku Takeda’s arrival in Osaka in June 1936. The people who appear in the photo reflect aspects of Morihei’s activities that extend beyond his martial arts teaching into family areas and the political realm…

Click here to read more

Jun
25

Seigo Okamoto’s Daito-ryu Roppokai: “Techniques which can deal with any situation from any direction”

I usually compare roppo to gaming dice to describe techniques which can deal with any situation from any direction, top or bottom, front or back, right or left, like the faces of dice. But these techniques do not have square angles like dice but are round, forming six (roku) infinite circles. I am eager to get as many meanings as I can out of the term…

Click here to read more