Aikido was founded by Morihei Ueshiba, the famed O’Sensei or (great teacher) in the first quarter of the last century. O’Sensei designed his martial art as a means of neutralizing rather than creating conflict and, should it prove necessary, of subduing an opponent without inflicting undue injury. As taught at this dojo, it is a philosophical discipline that teaches one to control the flow of energy throughout one’s body, and to correct internal imbalances through centering and posture. It is an extremely effective martial art that enables one of lesser strength to control another who is more powerful. Aikido is a non-aggressive discipline that utilizes the momentum of an attacking opponent to escape, reverse or neutralize an attack; it incorporates movement, meditation and effective self-defense into a beautiful martial art.
Training in Aikido
The name Aikido comprises of three words, Ai being blending or Harmony. Ki, lifeforce or energy, and Do, meaning path or way to enlightenment.
When we speak of enlightenment we are talking about an inner awareness that is as individual as the people experiencing it. Enlightenment is a transitory state that we attempt to extend for longer periods of time. It equates to that flash of inspiration or understanding that we have at certain moments in our life. In practice one attempts to blend with the attacking energy of an opponent.
Daily training begins with basic exercises to instill the theory of blending and circular motion in the trainee. Then we do exercises to increase our breath power and strength. At this point we may explore some techniques and then move on to free practice. Weapon training consists of the Kata, or training patterns left to us by O’Sensei. These consist of Jo or short staff, Sword and weapon disarming techniques. We then commence free training.
Pure Aikido Practice
Our practice is rooted in basic technique where we explore forms in their ideal technical state then we move to freeform training. At this dojo we train in such a way as to allow all people to train in a mutually beneficial way. Self defense is a priority. Students build their confidence and ability with personal attention to their specific needs. Students are paired with suitable training partners for their level of expertise. Beginners get to train with advanced and also people their own level. For the advanced student we have classes to extend them beyond their currant boundaries. We are always adjusting our classes to meet the needs of our trainees. We have regular seminars and weekend retreats to go deeper into our study and have fun as group in a scenic environment.