Aikido

Aikido


The roots of aikido date back to the
9th century when foundations of the martial arts using strikes and pressures
on the nerve centers in combination with joint locks were established in the
japanese imperial court. In 1925, Morihei Ueshiba, the martial arts
teacher and philosopher, gave this martial art its final shape. Thanks Ueshiba, aikido occupies a special place among other martial arts for it’s
consistent promotion of non-aggression and constant pursuit of harmony between
the human behavior and its surroundings. It even emphasizes physical and mental
harmony with the opponent. To preserve tradition, Ueshiba did not want to degrade aikido to a sport by organizing matches and competitions. The core idea – searching for harmony, leaves no room for rivalry and
competitiveness, the necessary components of sports competitions. Akido training is primarily focused on
the perfect technique of deflection and control over the opponent’s movement
using joint locks and throws. The attacker is not resisted, the power
invested into his attack is rather used against him by the employment of evasive maneuvers. Strikes as such are used only to distract the attacker. Aikido practitioners wear a traditional Japanese dress called HAKAMA. TORI – the defender, receives an attack and applies the defensive technique. UKE – the attacker, delivers an attack and then receives a defensive technique. Aikido training revolves around basic movements which are based on thrusting into an opponent and rotary movements around one’s own axis using the opponent’s energy. In addition to techniques in a stance,
fighting while kneeling and with traditional Japanese weapons such as JO,
are also taught in aikido An important element of a beginners training is learning how to break falls often ending with the opponent being thrown to the ground. As aikido training involves joint locks, a great emphasis is placed on the
careful treatment of a partner, who puts his or her health into the hands of the co-practitioner in order for both of them to learn individual techniques. After the founder´s death, his son took over the family tradition and currently his grandson is a continuator of the style. The style represented by the Ueshiba
family is referred to as AIKIKAI. Aikido rose to fame thanks to movies
with the American actor Steven Seagal who lived in Japan for several years and
is a 7th degree black belt in this martial art. Practicing Aikido is a great way to
develop coordination skills. Aikido´s important contribution to the social development of its pupils comes from its purely defensive philosophy, which offers a non aggressive approach to solving conflict situations.

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