Aikido is a martial art which developed in the 1910s to 1930s. It was developed by Morihei Ueshiba from the system of Daito-Ryu Aiki-jujutsu techniques to basically focus on the spiritual principle of harmony. It was developed as a synthesis of his martial studies, philosophy, and religious beliefs.
Aikido is a gentle martial art from Japan and its techniques are frequently referred to as waja. It is based primarily on two partners practicing pre-arranged forms kata rather than freestyle practice. The basic pattern is for the receiver of the technique (uke) to initiate an attack against the person who applies the technique- the tori, who neutralizes this attack with an aikido technique.
Aikido techniques are usually a defense against an attack; in the circumstance, to practice aikido with their partner, students must learn to deliver various types of attacks. Beginners in particular often practice techniques from grabs, both because they are safer and because it is easier to feel the energy and lines of force of a hold than a strike.
When all attacks are considered, aikido has over 10,000 nameable techniques. Aikido makes use of body movement (tai sabaki) to blend with uke. Most techniques can be performed while in a seated posture (seiza). Techniques, where both uke and tori are sitting, are called suwari-waza, and techniques performed with uke standing and tori sitting are called hanmihandachi. Thus, for fewer than twenty basic techniques, there are thousands of possible implementations.
Aikido contains a number of throwing and pinning techniques, which vary slightly depending on the attack.
The following are a list of aikido techniques.
- Tachiwaza-mae (standing, attacks from the front)
- Tachiwaza-ushiro (standing, attacks from the rear)
- Suwariwaza (tori and uke sitting)
- Hanmihandachiwaza (tori sitting, uke standing)
- Tantodori (defense against knife)
- Tachidori (defense against sword)
- Jodori (defense against staff)
- Kaeshiwaza (counter techniques)
- Henkawaza (changed techniques)
- Kogeki (attacks in aikido)
Aikido was first brought to the rest of the world in 1951 by Minoru Mochizuki with a visit to France where he introduced Aikido techniques to judo students. Today, after several incidences of expansions in the United States of America, Germany, France and so on, there are Aikido dojo throughout the world.
Aikido has several benefits. Some of these benefits are:
- An effective system of self defense
- Raises stamina and physical conditioning
- Aids in increasing flexibility of joints and muscles
- Improves focus and concentration
- Trains the mind to remain calm under stressful situations
- Promotes improved mind coordination
- Teaches safe techniques for falling and avoiding injuries
- Develops a dynamic, energetic individual
- Provides methods for relaxation of the body and mind.
Aikido’s style is generated from strategy, movement and a variety of throwing, joint-locking, pinning and striking techniques that require little physical strength to perform. It is undertaken to improve the individual and society. It begins before a physical attack has been launched, with an active awareness of distance and position. It is an incredible martial art with awesome self-defense theories and applications. Unfortunately, many functional self-defense and martial arts practitioners have overlooked aikido and consider it to be ineffective, primarily due to the unrealistic training in most schools. But doing so is a mistake. With realistic training, the unique principles and techniques of aikido can work extremely well.