Expanding and Refining the Notion of Self-defense by Stanley Pranin

“Martial artists discover that their discipline and effort has paid off handsomely and, in the bargain, provided benefits which spill over into other areas of their lives.” Aikido Journal #103 (1995) Self-defense can be defined as the protection of one’s life and/or property against an attack. In cases where people take active steps to safeguard […]

Historical photo: “Morihei Ueshiba captivates budo aficionados among Tokyo’s elite” by Stanley Pranin

“Here in a single image that tells a story with many threads, we see a 43-year-old martial arts phenomenon at the outset of his illustrious career.” In 1927, Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba moved his family to Tokyo from Ayabe, near Kyoto. They had spent the previous seven years living among the community of followers of […]

Interview with Kisaburo Osawa by Katsuaki Terasawa

“O-Sensei taught mostly the nobility and people connected with the military. So, of course, someone like myself was not qualified to participate!” This interview was conducted in San Francisco in 1975 and appeared in the November 1975 issue of Aiki News.   Sensei, would you explain how you first became involved in aikido? I understand […]

Magazine: Aikido Journal Number 100, 1994

“Although almost totally unknown to aikido practitioners, one of the most fascinating related forms of the art was created by Minoru Hirai. Hirai served as General Director of Morihei Ueshiba’s old Kobukan Dojo during World War II, and later taught his own unique form of jujutsu based on the principle of circular taisabaki. Aikido Journal […]

A Common Sense Look at Aikido by Yoshio Kuroiwa

“Basics demonstrate the mechanics of how to unbalance an opponent and create an opportunity for the application of a technique” Since there are no matches in Aikido we should give careful thought to the nature of our practice. The spiritual side of practice is also important, but if we overemphasize it our training becomes idealistic […]

Looking Back at the All-Japan Aikido Demonstration by Stanley Pranin

“One of the most interesting things about the All-Japan demonstrations is that you can see an entire range of aikidoka from hobbyists to the world’s finest teachers in a single venue, in a single afternoon.” Aikido Journal #118 (Fall/Winter 1999) I recently attended the All-Japan Aikido Demonstration sponsored by the Aikikai Hombu Dojo for perhaps […]

One Man, One Vision by Stanley Pranin

“The Founder was the proverbial ‘driven man’ who focused his energies on his own training and ventured forth on a unique voyage of inner discovery that culminated in the birth of aikido.” Aikido Journal #105 (1995) The other day one of our Aikido Journal staff members was speaking with a well-known senior instructor. Apparently, my […]

Morihiro Saito Celebrates 50 Years in Aikido, by Stanley Pranin

“An intimate glimpse of the Ueshiba and Saito Families in Iwama when Aikido was born” On May 4, 1996 a celebration was held in Iwama, Ibaragi Prefecture, to commemorate the 50 years Morihiro Saito of the Ibaragi Shuren Dojo has spent in aikido. Following opening remarks by Yoshimi Hanzawa Shihan, speeches were made by Aikikai […]

PDF download: January 1964 issue of Aikido Headquarters Newspaper

“Yoshimitsu Yamada Sensei boards the plane for NYC in 1964” While going through some old boxes of documents, we recently came upon a collection of old English-language newspapers published by the Aikido Headquarters Dojo in Tokyo. They contain a lot of good historical information that most of today’s practitioners have not seen. In the interests […]

Interview with Michio Hikitsuchi Sensei, Aikido 10th Dan by Laurin Herr and Tim Detmer

Excerpts from this 2001 interview conducted in Shingu, Japan were originally published in “Remembering O-Sensei”, edited by Susan Perry (Shambhala Publications 2002) “What I learned directly from O-Sensei is that the spirit of creating world peace comes before waza. Without that spirit, our Aikido cannot progress.” Sensei, when did you meet O-Sensei? I first met […]