Archives for December 2014

Dec
30

Spirit of honest attack! “Aikido Ukemi: its Pathology & Treatment,” by Chetan Prakash

In budo practice there is a transformation of ukemi, based on skill at the kihon level, into a much more sophisticated function. Yet this transformation comes from a very simple idea: uke attacks in all sincerity and with deadly intent, but upon having the attack rendered ineffective, enters survival and/or reversal mode, while maintaining connection with nage, with the greatest alacrity…

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Dec
30

Power and Precision: “Morihiro Saito at Melbourne Takemusu Aikido Seminar (1985)”

This video features a beautiful demonstration by Seishiro Endo, 8th dan, at the 2004 All-Japan Aikido Demonstration. Endo Sensei moves with grace while remaining centered and eschews the use of any physical strength while executing techniques. Seishiro Endo was one of the last generation of Aikikai instructors to have received training from Morihei Ueshiba and the senior instructors of the headquarters dojo in Tokyo beginning in the 1960s…

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Dec
30

An anachronism? “Why has Morihei Ueshiba O-Sensei had so little impact on the development of Aikido?” by Stanley Pranin

By the time aikido began to spread in the postwar era in Japan and abroad, the Founder was already an anachronism. He was elderly, selfish, cantankerous, spoke at times incomprehensibly, and moved in ways that only the most astute observer could follow. He was too much trouble to deal with, and he was consequently marginalized in the dojo he had built…

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Dec
29

Vladimir Vasiliev on Systema: Fundamentals of Knife Disarming

A wonderful demonstration by Vladimir Vasiliev of the soft and effective techniques of Systema against various knife attacks. Notice the use of strikes to disrupt the structural integrity of the opponent…

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Dec
29

Why is uke still balanced? “One change you can make to dramatically improve your aikido!” by Stanley Pranin

When watching videos across the spectrum, I am constantly amazed at how many practitioners and teachers alike attempt to apply techniques on a “balanced” uke. Another way of expressing this is that nage has failed to disrupt uke’s posture before attempting a throw. This is especially obvious when uke takes a spectacular fall. An uke whose body structure has been broken will not have the chance to perform an acrobatic fall. Add your comments to the discussion!…

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Dec
29

Raise your arm like a sword! Michio Hikitsuchi Sensei demonstrates Katatedori Kokyunage and Morotedori Kokyunage

In this video, Michio Hikitsuchi Sensei, recipient of a 10th dan from Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba, demonstrates Katatedori Kokyunage and Morotedori Kokyunage. Michio Hikitsuchi (1923-2004) operated the Kumano Juku dojo in Shingu, Wakayama-ken, for over 50 years. Beginning in the 1970s, he made frequent trips abroad to the USA and Europe conducting seminars…

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Dec
26

Magical! An artistic look at the Aikido of Christian Tissier by Mattheiu Lemaire

This is an incredibly well edited clip featuring professional footage of Christian Tissier Sensei of France and Bruno Gonzalez Sensei. The work of videographer Matthieu Lemaire in editing this clip is every bit as impressive as the spectacular technique of Christian Tissier…

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Dec
26

Intense crosstraining: “Shoji Nishio — Reaching outside the Aikikai Hombu Dojo for answers”

Being unable to get satisfactory answers to his questions, and absent weapons training, Nishio Sensei set out to crosstrain in other martial arts to fill the gaps. He already had a background in judo and karate. Nishio Sensei expanded his training by studying the use of the jo and ken, and also took up iaido training…

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Dec
26

We who have forgotten!. “An Overview of Koichi Tohei’s Early Aikido Career”

Who is Koichi Tohei and why is he so important to an understanding of the development of aikido? Should he be unceremoniously deleted from aikido history due to past grievances or should he be given due credit for his role in the shaping of the art of aikido?…

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Dec
24

From Stanley Pranin and Aikido Journal… Merry Christmas!

The Aikido Journal staff and I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you who celebrate Christmas a wonderful holiday! We hope that you will be able to spend quality time with your family and loved ones. We wish you, also, a very Happy New Year, and wonderful things for 2014! – Stanley Pranin…

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Dec
24

Harmonizing with the Universe: “Memoir of the Master,” by Morihei Ueshiba with commentary by Stanley Pranin

One of the first aikido books published in English appeared in 1963. It was authored by Morihei Ueshiba’s son, Kisshomaru Ueshiba, who later became the Second Doshu. This book contained a short section titled “Memoir of the Master.” It is a collection of aphorisms attributed to Morihei that encapsulates the essence and principles of Aikido…

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Dec
23

Can you handle kicks? Jose Andrade Sensei demonstrates Aikido defenses against kicks and groundwork

This is an interesting video in which Jose Andrade Sensei of the Aikido Tenshinkai of Florida presents a number of approached to defenses against kicks and groundwork, topics seldom covered in dojo training…

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