Aikido is a japanese martial art developed earlier this century by Morihei Ueshiba (1883 ~ 1969). Physically, it is an art involving various throws, joint locks and other techniques from other forms of martial arts. However, Aikido is one of the more spiritual martial arts. It does not focus on punching or kicking opponents, but rather on using their own energy to gain control of them or to throw them away from you.
This orientation came from the founder’s experience in learning many forms of martial arts and seeing the effects and devastation and destruction of war. In 1942, Morihei had a vision: “The Way of the Warrior has been misunderstood as a means to kill and destroy others. Those who seek competition are making a grave mistake. To smash, injure, or destroy is the worst sin a human being can commit. The real Way of a Warrior is to prevent slaughter – it is the Art of Peace, the power of love.” From 1942, Morihei secluded himself in the country and devoted every minute of his life thereafter to refining and spreading Aikido, the Art of Peace.
Aikido now finds itself being practised around the world in increasing popularity, both as an art of self-defense as well as excellent form of physical exercise.
Today, there are numerous Aikido organizations inside Japan. The training facility: Aikido Hombu Dojo remains the recognized centre in Shinjuku, Japan.
Aikido in Singapore began with the arrival of Sensei M Nagazono (5th Dan) from Hombu Dojo in 1958 to spread the art. Classes were over-crowded despite the fact that new students had to be recommended by an existing student and acceptance for training depended on the instructor’s judgment of the good character of the potential student! However, Nagazono soon returned to Japan, leaving training to (the late) Sensei Teddy Lee.
In contrast to other forms of martial, aikido movements are mainly circular and spherical in nature. For a student coming into contact with Aikido for the first time, what is important is to know firstly what Aikido is NOT. Aikido is NOT a form of martial art where:
– two (or more) persons try to overpower the other through brute strength
– sparring is the form of training
– aggressive martial spirit is built up during the training.
“Aikido is not for correcting others; it is for correcting your own mind. This is aikido. This is the mission of aikido.”