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Historic

Morihei Ueshiba

It has been founded by master Ueshiba during the first half of the XXst century (1883-1969). It results from the synthesis of the battle techniques practiced by the samurais in the past

(whose we know now how effective they could be) and from his philosophical studies Omotokyo and Koshinto.

What does aikido mean? AI: union, KI: energy, DO: way.

The aim is to enter in harmony with the partner, to unite with him to control him better and dissuade him from every attack. The essential aim is here not to destroy the other, it is to control him, to use his strength and energy and, if necessary, to turn it against him.

Aikido is a martial art which, thanks to technical acquisitions, is eventually a search for oneself, a way to know oneself better in a sense of "savoir-être" as well as in a sense of "savoir-faire". It allows to manage conflict situations better and to restore a certain balance between body and mind.

Aikido is all at once:

  • a very effective fighting technique;
  • an art of living;
  • a philosophy

Everyone can practice aikido in the entire world, from the age of 8 untill more than 80 years old. It tends to "bulid" a man in the widest sense of the word; responsible, strong and aware of one's possibilities.

Aikido allows to defend without weapons, against one of several opponents, armed or not provided that it's been practiced since several years. It includes, on a physical plan, the studying of:

  • techniques to fight without weapons one of several advesaries armed or not with kinfe,sabre,stick...
  • sabre techniques;
  • knife techniques;
  • breathing, concentrating techniques.

Practice is made by growing diifculties first fightng adversary, then two, then a third...who can be armed or not with knife, stick, sabre. Across the years, it appears that our main adversary is ourselves.

Even if the chances for the practising person are theoretically very slim, he learns how to get out of these situations without outbursts of violence, but rather with a kind of mastered vacuum.
The striker's agressive intentions turn against himself with more strength than the determination he put in his assault.

Because of this studying, the aikido practising person is not exactly as the others. In a general way, he supports the life conditions of  present times better. On the floors, he meets people from every ages and social classes in an agreable atmosphere.

Aikido competitions don't exist; it means no rivalities, no jalousies, the results are just the consequence of everyone's own investment and work.

Practising has many consequences:

  • reflexes development
  • excellent physical maintenance
  • harmonious body
  • management of "modern living stress"
  • mental release
  • oneself selfcontrol

The studying is under controll of several confirmed ad qualified teachers. Training periods are regularly approachable in Begium and abroad.

What’s the difference between Aikido and other martial arts?

In Aikido, the second principle, called harmony from KI, has many applications. Practising, you always try to find harmony between your own KI and the one of the striker. That way, you answer with less brutality, neither striking nor hitting, even if it’s possible. You can find this search of harmony with the partner during exercises like Kumi-jo and Kumi-tachi which are basic techniques to reach the harmony of the KI.

As soon as basic techniques are assimilated, some people think that they should take part in competitions to test these techniques. This way of thinking is wrong because the idea of harmony in Aikido is totally opposed to the idea of competition. Moreover, this would be very dangerous because in Aikido opposition means fight, injuries and even sometimes death, especially with a real sabre.

The more the Budo of today (martial arts) looks for real peace and the more he spread “universal love”, the more the way that leads to this aim is difficult. That’s the world of the Budo. Making progress on that way is a trial that leads to a constantly renewed joy and also to harmonious human relations.

When you understand how Aikido complex is, you know that you can’t depend on a particular ken or jo or any particular weapon. Developing mind, body, techniques is linked with action. If you use a sabre, don’t consider it’s a sabre, if you use a jo, don’t care about it but feel the harmony and unity of the movement.

This proves that Aikido can easily be adapted to any situation. Studying and practising is the only way to understand Aikido deeply. That’s how to develop the real spirit of Aikido.

Which equipment?

The white keikogi (judo kimono)
The black or white belly (coloured bellies are reserved to children)
The hakama (black or deep blue) which is worn after several year of practise. Wearing hakama is an evidence of commitment and way to accept to continue learning Aikido under control of the teacher.
Wooden weapons to practise aiki ken and aiki jo.
Thin sandals (zoris)

 

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