About Aikido (合気道)
Aikido is a martial art that is a combination of “training” and “spirituality” that does not compete to win or lose.
Aikido’s techniques are only receiving technique. Aikido, which involves twisting the elbows, wrists and other joints of an attacker to suppress the attack, and then instantly throwing or holding it down, was started by Morihei Ueshiba in the Taisho period.
Ueshiba studied each style of Ju-jutsu from his teenage years, and was greatly influenced by Takeda Sokaku of Daito-ryu Ju-jutsu. However, Ueshiba gradually began to question the martial arts of winning and losing. After meeting Oomotokyo’s Deguchi Onisaburo, Ueshiba began to devote himself to spiritual cultivation. It wasn’t until 1942 that he formally named the martial art he created “Aikido”.
Aikido is characterized by the fact that there are no matches. Performances are performed by two people, one on the receiving end and one who applies the technique end, but there is no scoring. The fact that there is no distinction between superior and inferior is what sets it apart from other martial arts.
In other words, it is considered that the original way of Aikido is not to compare with others, but to continue practicing for one’s own growth for a lifetime.
Basic Philosophy of Aikido
The principle of the rotation (Entennori-円転の理)
Aikido consists of a series of circular movements, both in movement and technique. It’s not “push and pull,” but “push and turn,” or “pull and turn and enter. You can deflect and control your opponent’s power by going around in a circle, not against them.
This “circle” movement is the most important feature of Aikido.
In Aikido, it is considered important to press the “Seikatanden”, which is the center of gravity of the body, and to control the breathing. My center is connected to the center of the earth, and it doesn’t move an inch. It is based on the idea that the spirit comes from such a stable state.
“Seikatanden”…The place below the navel. It is said to be a place where the spirit of the mind and body gather, and in martial arts, it is important to focus one’s awareness on this.
Basic Aikido Techniques
There is a wide variety of techniques in Aikido. Moreover, the number of techniques is said to be too numerous to count, since both positions and movements change depending on the change in posture.
According to one theory, there are 2,884 techniques.
What is Aiki (合気)?
Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido, said, “In terms of uniting the spirit, it is, in simple terms, to become one with nature. This is why the movement of Aikido is centered around a circle that does not go against nature. Incidentally, in the dojo opened by Ueshiba’s pupil, Shioda Gozo, it was taught that “Aikido is because of the way in which you can coordinate your mind with your opponent.
Aikido today is also known as a lifelong martial art that can be participated in by both children and the elderly. I don’t think there are many opportunities for elementary school children and people over 80 to exercise together, across generations.
Habitual training is the secret to a long life as well as building a strong body. Being able to continue throughout our life is one of the features that makes Aikido so acceptable to so many people.