What is Aikido?
Aikido has been called “the way of harmony.” It does not emphasize punches and kicks as a defense, but rather seeks to absorb and blend with an attacker’s energy, bringing the attack to a peaceful resolution. The intent is to protect oneself without inflicting serious injury on the attacker. Aikido is more than self-defense. Practice trains the mind and body to work together in a relaxed yet powerful way. Aikido may be successfully applied to everyday situations as the student learns such principles as balance, blending and redirection of force.
Why Practice Aikido?
- Non violent, ethical, spiritual focus
- Integration of body, mind and spirit
- Conflict resolution and self-defense
- Non competitive environment
- Physical fitness
- Spiritual growth
- Practical application to daily life
Women’s self defense
Many people have asked “Is Aikido an effective means of self defense for women?” In many martial arts it takes time to become proficient. Aikido is based on nonresistance. The Aikido student uses the opponents’ energy and power in defending one’s self. Therefore, a woman has no difficulty in defending herself against an attack of a much larger or stronger person.
- When entering the dojo, take off your hat and shoes.
- When coming onto or leaving the practice mat, bow to the front of the dojo.
- When you greet a fellow student or an instructor, greet them by bowing and saying “Osu!”
- Never shout, curse, or become angry on the mat.
- Always begin and end your training with your partner by bowing to each other.
- Visitors are welcome to sit quietly and watch class.
In aikido, there are no fights or competitions. The essence of aikido is captured in the saying ‘masakatsu agatsu, katsuha-yahi’. ‘Masakatsu agatsu’ translates as ‘true victory is self-victory’ meaning that the purpose of aikido is not to prove one’s strength in contest with another person. Rather, the competition is with oneself and the goal is the forging and tempering of one’s body and mind through the mental, physical and spiritual discipline of regular training. This is also why, during training, we work in pairs or groups, taking turns to be shite (the one who performs the technique) and uke (the one who receives the technique).
We have many excellent, high-ranking instructors at Yoshinkai Aikido. They are experienced teachers and martial artists, who have not forgotten what it is like to be a beginner. Each student is taught in accordance with his/her own level of development. Our instructors receive no financial compensation. They are here, because they love Aikido.
Our Chief Instructor
Takeshi Kimeda Sensei was born in Tokyo, Japan, in 1941. He began his study of Aikido under both Master Gozo Shioda and Takashi Kushida Sensei at the age of 18, while he was a student at Meiji Gakuin University.
He graduated from university with a degree in Business Administration and a third degree black belt in Yoshinkai Aikido. In 1964 Kimeda sensei brought Yoshinkai Aikido to North America.
At the 50th Anniversary of the founding of Yoshinkai Aikido, Kimeda Sensei was the only individual awarded special recognition for spreading Yoshinkan outside of Japan.
Kimeda Sensei is the chief instructor of Aikido Yoshinkai Canada and has been a professional instructor of Yoshinkai Aikido in Canada for more than 40 years. He holds the rank of 9th degree black belt and has trained more than 350 students to black belt.
How to find us
History of Aikido
Aikido is a Japanese martial art, which traces back to Daito Aikijutsu which is said to have been founded by Prince Tejun, the sixth son of the Emperor Seiwa (850 – 880 AD). However modern day Aikido, as it is known and practiced today, was founded by Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969) who brought together the essentials of other ancient martial school and added techniques of his own.
One of Ueshiba Sensei’s most outstanding pupils was Gozo Shioda, who founded Yoshinkan Aikido. He has contributed much to bring about the popularity that Aikido has enjoyed since the war.
Gozo Shioda was born in 1915, the son of a renowned medical doctor. From the age of 18 he studied under Morihei Ueshiba Sensei. For a period of eight years he dedicated himself solely to practice Aikido and as a result developed and mastered the art himself.
Shioda Sensei established Aikido Yoshinkai in 1955.
Page updated: August 28, 2013