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History of Aikido

June 25, 2019

What is aikido?

Developed in the 1920s, by Professor Morihei Ueshiba (aka O Sensei), aikido is a modern, non-violent Japanese martial art. Modern Aikido has reinvigorated the ancient Aiki principle which had become almost lost until Ueshiba rediscovery in the 20th Century.

Although it is an effective martial art in its own right, there is more to aikido than the physical resolution of conflict. Based on rigorous training in jujitsu, along with spear and sword techniques, aikido is also a way to refine and uplift the spirit.

Aikido translates as “the Way of Harmony with the Forces and Principles of Nature”. With its combination of physical, mental and spiritual training, aikido is considered “the true budo path”, which utilises martial training as a “Way” to spiritual enlightenment.


What is aikido’s true purpose?

Over recent decades, the martial art has surged in popularity. Despite this, aikido remains true to Ueshiba’s strong faith in “austere training” designed to enlighten the spirit through the constant refinement of the mind and body.

Despite popular belief, aikido is considered an art, rather than a sport. The reason being that Ueshiba considers the martial art a path to personal development, instead of a competition. As such, aikido focuses heavily on the universal principle of “ki”, or the life force.

Through the study of aikido, students seek the unification of universal ki, with the ki of the individual.


How was aikido developed?

Technically speaking, aikido is rooted in various types of jujitsu (particularly daitoryu-jujitsu, along with sword and spear fighting techniques. However it has been profoundly influenced by ancient Aiki principles which incorporate the understanding of how to blend and use Ki and the mind. The result is a flowing art that is completely unique to other martial arts in its power and gentleness.


What is aikido’s philosophy?

The philosophy of Aikido is based on the principles of Nature and the Universe. In this way it is beyond man-made theory and concepts and is based on how life works. It incorporates the understanding of Ki and Yin and Yang and is about moving in Harmony with ebb and flow of life’s motion. It is the art of restoring balance to not only the attacker but to any situation we find ourself in.

Would you like to learn more about aikido’s rich, and fascinating history? If so, simply contact the experienced team at Shin Sen Dojo today.

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