Mar
04

“Elements of Aiki Weapons Partner Practices Part 1: Parrying with the Jo” by James Neiman

Introduction

O’Sensei’s development of practices involving the Aiki Ken and Jo were passed on to successive generations in the Iwama tradition, and have, to this day, continued to be developed as partner practices often referred to as the Ken Tai Jo, Kumi Jo, and Kumi Tachi. Based on the skills and movements inherent to the Aiki Ken and Jo Suburi, Morihiro Saito Shihan and Hitohiro Saito Shihan have continued to build and refine the weapons partner practices so that it is possible to practice fluid dynamics using both offensive and defensive tactics. From these practices Aikidoka can extend the ideas to develop precise technique in relationship to one or more attackers with both empty-handed taijutsu and more general weapons partner practices. The basis for the utility of the practices is the usage of large external objects that increase visibility and awareness of all aspects of Aikido technique, as well as distancing, movement, energy extension and absorption, and timing.

At Shugyo Aikido Dojo we teach the Suburi, Ken Tai Jo, Kumi Jo, and Kumi Tachi to all students as part of a standardized curriculum in the traditions passed to us through our lineage with Morihiro Saito Shihan, Hitohiro Saito Shihan, and Pat Hendricks Shihan, and we encourage advanced students to continue exploring variations on the standard repertoire and identify connections with empty-handed partner practices.

Because of the continuous evolution of the partner practices, and out of respect for the leaders of our style, this series focuses on generally applicable elements of the partner practices, rather than laying out entire sequences that are subject to change. This approach will help ensure that the skills discussed will never become obsolete, as opposed to the practice sequences, which can and do change often. For example, at this moment in time, the 1st Ken Tai Jo involves parries as part of a lengthy series of interactions between two partners. Instead of attempting to describe the entire 1st Ken Tai Jo, the more limited and productive goal in a given paired article and video would be to describe only a parry, which is involved in several other partner practices as well. It is much more empowering to practice and master one individual movement at a time, because this allows the Aikidoka to use those movements in any way desired, and easily mimic any contemporary sequences.
[Read more...]

Sep
26

Samural video: “Ame Agaru” Fight in the Forest

“A model of sword-fighting skills in movies!!”

An incredibly well-choreographed fight in the forest from the film “Ame Agaru” (After the Rain). The setting is Japan, during the Kyoho Era (1716-1735). Following torrential rains, a group of travelers are stuck in a country inn by flooding. Among them is a certain Ishei Misawa, a ronin, a masterless samurai with outstanding fighting skills. After he intervenes to prevent a duel between two young samurai, Ishei is noticed by Lord Shigeaki, who invites him to become the master of arms of his fief.

Click here to watch the forest fight scene… Incredible!

Nov
30

Add your book review to the world’s largest aikido bibliography!

We would like to point out the available of book summaries and scans for books in our bibliography database.

Click here to see a complete list of books in our database. Among the many features added to the bibliography section is a book review capability replete with a star-rating system.

[Read more...]

Nov
06

Add your book review to the world’s largest aikido bibliography!

We would like to point out the available of book summaries and scans for books in our bibliography database.

Click here to see a complete list of books in our database. Among the many features added to the bibliography section is a book review capability replete with a star-rating system.

These features are viewable when clicking the “View entire list” option on the bibliography search page. Another feature is the ability to toggle between images for book entries that have more than one scan available. See here for an example. Remember you can click on any image to enlarge it.

[Read more...]

Jul
09

“Hundreds of Techniques of Iwama Aikido” by Morihiro Saito, 9th dan!

Together with the launch of our newest DVD title “Morihiro Saito: Lost Seminars, Part 6,” we are offering a set of all six DVDs of this series for the incredible price of $149.95, a full 35% off the retail price. This set of DVDs contains literally hundreds of techniques explained in detail and demonstrated by Morihiro Saito Sensei, 9th dan, one of aikido’s most renowned instructors.
[Read more...]

Apr
07

“Lost Seminars Volume 6″ latest in Morihiro Saito DVD series!

The finest in aikido instruction from Morihiro Saito, 9th dan!

We now have available yet another DVD featuring Aikido legend, Morihiro Saito Sensei, one of Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba’s most skilled disciples. This outstanding DVD presents precious footage of Saito Sensei as he appeared in 1992 while conducting a seminar in San Diego, California. Like the preceeding five DVDs, this one is chock full of explanations and demonstrations from the vast repertoire of Iwama Aikido techniques.

Click here for promotional clip of new DVD!!
[Read more...]

Feb
11

“Tales of the Hermit Volume I: The Castle in the Rain and The Judge ” by Oscar Ratti and Adele Westbrook

“Oscar Ratti and Adele Westbrook are the authors of two classic illustrated books that have never been out of print since their initial publications, and that are currently available worldwide in multiple foreign-language editions: Secrets of the Samurai and Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere. They are also the translators of Tacuinum Sanitatis: The Medieval Health Handbook.

They met at Columbia University, where Mr. Ratti was doing graduate work in Classical Languages and Literature and Ms. Westbrook was studying Philosophy.
[Read more...]

Nov
06

Brian Kagen pick: “A Randori Workout at Shodokan”

“During the one-hour randori workouts at Shodokan, the following sequence of drills is typical. The person holding the knife is called the tanto (after the fact that a dagger in Japanese is called a tanto.) The unarmed person is referred to as the toshu (literally unarmed) player.”

Brian Kagen is an avid web researcher with a particular interest in martial arts. His training background includes both judo and aikido. He has contributed hundreds of article links over the years for AJ readers.

Click here to read entire blog.

Nov
03

Review of “Aikido, Keri-waza” by Clark Bateman

This new book (lulu.com 2008) is an interesting foray “outside the box” of conventional Aikido thinking. While Aikido is generally described as a defensive art, many from within and without have questioned its effectiveness in a realistic scenario. One reason for this is that the various attacks, and therefore the various defenses, contained in the typical Aikido syllabus are very limited in scope, especially if viewed from a realtime fighter’s perspective.
[Read more...]