Oct
02

“When Systems Falter,” by Francis Takahashi from aikiweb.com

“The direct students of the Founder appear to have had a wide range of personal martial arts backgrounds, from predominantly Aikido related, to having mastery or in depth knowledge of several martial arts systems prior to placing themselves under the direct tutelage of Morihei Ueshiba. Even then, it was not uncommon for many of these students to avail themselves of additional knowledge and involvement with philosophical, religious and martial training influences while remaining students of Aikikai and the Ueshiba Iemoto system.”

Click here to read entire article.

Oct
01

Brian Kagen pick: “Six Principles of Training,” by Kondo Katsuyuki

“Daito-ryu is built upon a foundation of six basic elements. These are extremely deep and complex and mastery of even any one of them requires a great deal of time and effort. One’s ability to perform Daito-ryu techniques correctly and fully will only develop through constant and strenuous efforts to take all six into account at all times.”

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 article.

Join us on Facebook

Sep
26

Brian Kagen pick: “Cultural Center Focuses On Community – Gaku Homma of Denver” from thedenverchannel.com

“Many martial arts studios put an emphasis on enhancing mind and body. At the Nippon Kan Japanese Cultural Center in Denver, they also focus on community. Chief instructor Gaku Homma teaches the Japanese martial art of aikido. It relies on open hands, not fists. The idea is to help people develop themselves. Homma makes sure those open hands extend to the community.

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 article.

Sep
17

Brian Kagen pick: “Lia Suzuki – Aikido Kenkyukai Santa Barbara Still Kicking as Nonprofit,” by Ray Estrada

“Suzuki said her nonprofit is trying to provide South Coast residents with a path toward peace. It encourages the practice of the Japanese nonviolent martial art of aikido, promoting it as a vehicle for self-improvement and spiritual growth, as well as a harmonious way to resolve everyday stress and conflict. Suzuki received her sixth-degree black belt in aikido in January. She teaches the “art of peace” to anyone age 3 or older. The nonprofit also runs various community projects, such as its sponsorship program for low-income and at-risk children who are given the opportunity to train in aikido.”

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 article.

Sep
15

Brian Kagen pick: “Midlife Lessons from Aikido,” By Nannette Matilac

“I marvel at the age-old wisdom inherent in the techniques, like the principle of the unbendable arm and the movement in strong beautiful circles, whether these are centrifugal or centripetal. Watching the black belts move with effortless grace reminds me of all the ninja TV series I watched from childhood. Blessed are those who are born to practice aikido – those who transform like superheroes on the mats. I know I can never be like them in this lifetime. Still clumsy even after a year of aikido practice, I found comfort in the fact that most of the black belts have been practicing for years, if not decades.”

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 article.

Sep
10

Brian Kagen pick: “Kathy James – A Martial Artist Making a Difference,” by Paul Rest

“She also began studying ballet, which eventually brought her to the Bay Area. In the Bay Area, Robert Nadeau Sensei and Frank Doran Sensei were her first Aikido teachers. In 1980 she began studying Feldenkrais in Amherst, Massachusetts, and continuing her Aikido studies there. She also had opportunities to train with Yamada Sensei, Kanai Sensei and Tamura Sensei while there. In 1988 she returned to the Bay Area after taking a break from Feldenkrais and Aikido.”

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 article.

Sep
07

Brian Kagen pick: “Budo Senmon Gakko,” from wikipedia.com

“In 1905 a division of the Butoku Kai was formed to train bujutsu instructors. This system was revised and improved a number of times and them led to the formation of the Butoku Gakko (School of Martial Virtue) in 1911. This became known as the Bujutsu Senmon Gakko (Bujutsu Specialist School) in 1912, and then the Budo Senmon Gakko in 1919 when the term ‘budo’ officially replaced ‘bujutsu’. The Budo Senmon Gakko (or Busen as it became known) together with the Tokyo Koto Shihan Gakko (Tokyo Higher Normal School) led the way in producing young instructors who would be posted to schools throughout the country to teach children the arts.”

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 article.

Aug
31

Brian Kagen pick: “Sonja Sutherland – A Martial Artist Making a Difference,” by Paul Rest

“Sonja, a black belt, began her Aikido practice in 1995 with Robert Nadeau, Sensei. At that time she was in her second year of Feldenkrais* training, and writes, “…I started Aikido to see how Aikido would inform my Feldenkrais practice. I knew that without an embodied understanding of these dynamic relationships, my Feldenkrais practice could not fully develop.”

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 article.

Aug
30

Brian Kagen pick: “The white hakama of Yushinkan,” by George McCall

“Nakayama [Hakudo] was highly influential in the Butokukai and therefore the kendo community at large. He practised around the country and many of his students went on to become kendo leaders in their own right. Quite a few of the innovations he came up with at Yushinkan (and promoted by him and his students) are currently taken for granted in the kendo community now, including parts of the reiho we use, and even the method many of us tie our men-himo. This article deals only with one such thing: the origin of the use of white dogi (hakama in particular). I’ve heard a lot of explanations for its use, from the ordinary to the mystical, with people sometimes even arbitrarily defining rules for wearing white. This occurs even in Japan. However, the reason for its initial introduction is as mundane as it can be, despite what connotations people may or may not give it now.

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 article.

Aug
22

Brian Kagen pick: “World War II combatives,” from Wikipedia.com

“Distinctions between World War II combatives and modern combatives include: 1) The former tends to be proactive by attacking the attacker, whereas the latter is generally reactive with specific defenses to specific attacks. 2) The former is based upon explosive high percentage gross motor strikes to vital targets, whereas the latter is based upon fine motor skill grappling. 3) The former seeks primarily to disable the enemy as quickly as possible at all costs, whereas the latter seeks primarily to build “warrior ethos” and the courage to close with the enemy.”

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 article.

Aug
16

Brian Kagen pick: “Chin Kon Ki Shin: Shinto Elements in a Modern Warmup,” by Dan Penrod

“Chinkon-kishin has ancient roots that are referenced in the old Shinto texts such as the Kojiki. The shamanistic practice of mystical breathing and meditation of uniting the divine and human spirits was often used in old times in the preparation of waterfall misogi, an ascetic practice of standing under a freezing waterfall for long periods of time, in meditation, with the objective of cleansing the mind, body, and spirit. O Sensei often practiced this kind of misogi (spiritual cleansing), but to O Sensei, aikido was his daily misogi practice. For this reason the founder would prepare for the misogi of his aikido training by performing chinkon-kishin techniques in his warm-ups.”

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 article.

Aug
10

Brian Kagen pick: “Randori” from Wikipedia.com

“The exact meaning of randori depends on the martial art it is used in. In judo, jujitsu and Shodokan Aikido, among others, it most often refers to one-on-one sparring where partners attempt to resist and counter each other’s techniques. In other styles of aikido, in particular Aikikai, it refers to a form of practice in which a designated aikidoka defends against multiple attackers in quick succession without knowing how they will attack or in what order. This form of randori is not sparring, and the attackers are usually not allowed to resist or attempt to counter the defender’s techniques. The term is used only by Aikikai dojos outside Japan. In Japan, this form of practice is called taninzu-gake (多人数掛け?), which literally means multiple attackers. In kendo, jigeiko means “friendly” free combat as in competition, but not counting the points.”

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 article.