Jun
07

Brian Kagen pick: “Discovering Aiki,” by Daniel A. James

“Aikido is a tough art to learn and its all to easy to go through the motions on the mat and just have a good time. Aiki is not an intuitive concept to grasp (see – About Aiki) It is present in many samurai koryu martial arts and gives the practitioner a way to deal with someone that is faster, stronger and has an advantage over you through an attack that has taken your centre.”

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.

Jun
02

Brian Kagen pick: “Aikido – The Theory of Limits (Part1),” by George Ledyard

“If most people were asked what the limiting factor was in their training, I think that most would reply “time”. Most folks simply do not have the time to train as they would like. If they only could train more, then they would really be able to take their training to a higher level… But is time REALLY the true limiting factor. Most of the time I would say not.”

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.

May
31

Brian Kagen pick: “Kicking butt for inner peace,” by Penny Bernath from cnn.com

“I later became frustrated with many martial arts and self-defense classes that I found. At the point of attack, the victim is taught to instantly transform into a crazed aggressor by kicking, striking and screaming.

This is unrealistic, particularly for a woman who isn’t aggressive by nature. So I gravitated toward aikido, a defensive martial art that taught me to work with — instead of against — my nature. Aikido works by blending with an attack and redirecting it away.”

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.

May
26

Brian Kagen pick: “Aikido’s mystical path to peace on Earth,” by Anna Kunnecke

“With its sober green cover, soft cream paper, cloth bookmark and diminutive size, this book feels designed to be carried around and studied like a sacred text. For it is indeed a spiritual manual rather than a technical one, a collection of lectures given by the founding father of aikido, Morihei Ueshiba, to members of the religious group Byakko Shinko Kai.”

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.

May
24

Brian Kagen pick: “Should You Ever Give Up on Someone?,” by Jeff Broderick

“So, what do you think? Should some people just be encouraged to take up bird watching? Weapons kata are not usually very dangerous, but I’m not crazy about the idea of training with somebody who often does the totally unexpected, or without any control of his motions.”

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.

May
22

Brian Kagen pick: “Aikido and Dad,” by Yuhri

“Dad (Yoshihiko Hirata) had a complicated relationship with the leading figures in Aikido, not least with Tohei-sensei. His friendship with Maruyama-sensei, on the other hand, seemed very straight-forward to my admittedly youthful eyes at the time. He was one of Dad’s best friends, and came over at least once that I remember; I recall a lot of laughter and a lot of drinking, and several drawings. Maruyama-sensei drew cartoons at the drop of a hat, and one of the clearest memories from my childhood, bizarrely, is of a cartoon he drew of my Dad cavorting happily with a bottle of beer while my impatient mother looked on.”

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.

May
20

Brian Kagen pick: “Battered Briton survives aikido ordeal,” by Damien Okado Gough

“Yoshinkan (meaning “hall for cultivating the spirit”) is a style of aikido founded by Gozo Shioda after World War II. Made famous by the controversial book “Angry White Pyjamas” by Robert Twigger, the Senshusei Aikido training course was initially started at the dojo in 1957 to train members of the Tokyo riot police. In 1991 the 11-month program opened its doors to applicants outside the police force, and since then the course has attracted recruits from all over world.”

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.

May
16

Brian Kagen pick: “What is a ‘martial arts master’?”

“Put the two meanings together, and you can see where we get the romanticized, Yoda-like concept of a Master: someone whose skill and understanding are so great, and wisdom so deep, he (or she) is worthy of being followed and emulated like a guru. We have to mention wisdom and understanding here, because they are what raise the concept above plain technical skill. That’s important to us traditional martial artists, because we like to believe we are pursuing something greater—polishing our character.”

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.

May
15

Brian Kagen pick: “Victory in the Pacific”

“In this provocative, thorough examination of the final months of the war, American Experience looks at the escalation of bloodletting from the vantage points of both the Japanese and the Americans. Despite warnings that his country, brought to its knees by the conflict, might erupt in a Communist revolution, Emperor Hirohito believed that one last decisive battle could reverse Japan’s fortunes. From the U.S. capture of the Mariana Islands through the firebombing of Tokyo and the dropping of the atomic bomb, Victory in the Pacific chronicles the dreadful and unprecedented loss of life and the decisions made by leaders on both sides that finally ended the war.”

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 view documentary video.

May
04

Brian Kagen pick: “The Devil’s Handshake,” by Jason Couch

“The Devil’s Handshake is probably the second most common come-along during the 1900s jujutsu craze (here’s the most popular one). It is typically applied by offering up a hand in friendship to then snatch the hand offered in return and slip into an arm lock. The idea, as the illustrations show, is that the victim’s arm is isolated and straightened to place pressure upon the elbow in a straight arm bar.”

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.

Apr
29

Brian Kagen pick: “The Swordsman and the Cat”

“The narrative features a swordsman called Shōken who is beset by a pesky rat. After the neighborhood cats fail to chase the rat away, the swordsman himself tries his hand at getting rid of the rat. Failing miserably himself, he calls on the help of a cat “widely known for her mysterious virtue as the most able rat-catcher.” This cat catches the rat with ease, and that evening all the cats get together to discuss the days events and the art of fighting rats.”

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.

Apr
22

Brian Kagen pick: “Japanese sensei reveals Aikido secrets in Moscow”

“Sensei Akira Mitsuhasi is certain that practicing Aikido will create a safer environment for humanity. After all, neutralizing a hostile enemy is the martial art’s prime philosophy, one that should be taught from a very young age.”

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.