The aikido (合気道 Aikido ) is a Budō (method of education resulting from a Martial art Japan board), founded by Morihei Ueshiba during the 20th century, between 1930 and 1960 (officially recognized by the Japanese government in 1940 under the name D aikibudō ), but based on schools of martial arts much older (primarily the Ju-jitsu of the school daitō ryū , the fencing or kenjutsu and the Aikijutsu). The aikido was thus born from the meeting between these martial techniques and a metaphysical reflection of Ueshiba Master on the direction of the martial practice.
The aikido is composed of techniques to the weapons and naked hands using the force of the adversary, or rather its aggressiveness and its will to harm. These techniques not aim overcoming the adversary, but at reducing its attempt at aggression to nothing. The aikido can be regarded as the concretization of the concept of self-defense: a reaction proportioned and immediate with an aggression. In fact, in the spirit of the aikido, there is no combat, since this one finishes at the time when it starts. In accordance with this logic, there does not exist competition of aikido except in the style Shodokan founded by Kenji Tomiki (and of this fact called also Tomiki ryu , École Tomiki).
Practical of the aikidoThe aikido is practiced by women and men of all sizes and ages. The goal of the practice is to improve, to progress (technically, physically and mentally) in good mood (Morihei Ueshiba insisted much on this point). Only techniques are shown respecting the partner. Particularly complex, its use in real combat requires an high level of practice. Moreover if the techniques remained based on the traditional academism, they were adapted to a combative style. The aikido is thus not a means to learn how to fight. Despite everything, the aikido makes it possible to prepare as much physically (flexibility, speed, musculature), mentally (to remain calm in all circumstances) and technically (to respect the security distance, to find the opening, to place, manage several simultaneous attacks) with the possibility of attacks of all kinds (not only martial).
There exist various styles of aikido answering various aspirations. The most widespread style is that initiated by the proper son of the founder, Kisshomaru Ueshiba, style known under the name of Aikikai . However to include/understand the existence of different schools, it is necessary to take into account the fact that the founder of the aikido created this martial art and developed it throughout its life. The technological developments were done until the death of Morihei Ueshiba which had many followers, disciples who thus propagated the technique of an Aikido in perpetual evolution. The son of the founder who accepted only temporarily teaching that his/her father did not cease offering to others, thus does not practice necessarily the same technique as these other disciples. He is thus other Masters, which explains the various schools. In the spirit even of the founder of the aikido, a federation with the universal and monolithic technique thus does not have a direction. It is especially not a sport, but a way of apprehending the man. The founder of the Aikido if he were brilliant a patriotic soldier, was also pacifist convinced.
The aikido termThe term aikido ( aikidō in Japanese) is composed of 3 meaning Kanji:
Aikido can thus result in “the way of the agreement of energies”.
Indeed, the term “agreement” is more close to the original Japanese direction of L aiki as being an action to meeting (clarified in the composition of the Kanji ) that the term “harmonization”. The “harmony” can be the desired result of the practice of the aikido, but one does not make aikido without making agree energies (what one does before and after, harmonious or not, imports little as long as with the aikido like such). Like it points out Olivier Gaurin, the aikido, by the agreement (“to put the hearts together”), pleasing with a result where it will be possible to communicate with the “adversary”, impossible thing if one has in the idea to harmonize it (“to bring to an agreement, to agree”, which is perhaps impossible while leaving) or to destroy it. Another raised problem is which “harmony” often implies a concept of friendship or peace, which is superfluous (one cannot be liked by everyone even if oneself one likes everyone). For example, Japanese uses the word wagō (和合) for “harmony”, term made up of “peace” and “to agree”: while agreeing towards peace, one creates the harmony.
History of the aikidoLike the majority of the modern budo (Judo, Karate, Kendo…), the aikido is the heir to the martial arts developed during the periods of war, which were modified by the periods of peace (era Tokugawa) and the disappearance of the class of the Samurai S (restoration of Meiji).
Morihei Ueshiba was an enthusiastic practitioner shinto, and it in addition had real experience of the war: it took part in the Guerre Russo-Japanese woman, and many its pupils died during the Second world war. Its course, emblematic of an authentic spiritual realization, led it to receive the revelation of martial novel methods, and with having to transmit to us the “art of peace”, of which the goal would be to improve the Man, from a physical but especially behavioral point of view (tolerance and peace) and spiritual.
See also: History of the aikido
Practice with naked hands
The founder of the aikido did not want to hear of competition. The emphase is put on the complete development of the individual. During the courses, the pupils observe the teacher make the demonstration of a technique and work then with a partner to retort it. They improve their technique thus and their comprehension of Article the movement, positioning, the precision and the rate/rhythm are all of the important aspects in the execution of the techniques. The pupils also gain in flexibility and adaptation by applying them.
The aïkidokas are involved together like partners. The “attacker” ( uke , literally “that which accepts, which falls”, also called aite in, literally “that which lends its hand”) starts an attack against the “defender” ( tori “which seizes”, also called shi and sometimes stroke “which projects” or shite “that which carries out”), which neutralizes it with a technique of aikido.
In general, one studies the technique in the following way: the professor shows the movement, then the partner uke attacks twice tori four times (on each side: right-hand side and left alternatively), then the partners exchange the roles for 4 new attacks and so on. When several movements were seen starting from the same attack, the professor can make work in “free technique” ( jiyū waza ): the roles uke and tori do not change, uke is raised after each movement and re-attack immediately tori which applies the technique that he wants; one then works mainly the placement and the movement of the body as well as the endurance (cardiovascular). Sometimes, tori is attacked by several uke , in order to work the answer to an attack of group (one calls this work randori although that is different from the free combat applied to the Judo).
Components of a movement
The movements of aikido leave the attack of one of the two partners, tackles started his own initiative by this partner ( uke ) or caused by the practitioner who will apply the technique ( tori ). This attack can consist of a blow, a seizure or a combination of both. Blows and seizures aim the upper part of the body in general.
See also: Technical of aikido
There are then three or four parts which one always finds with the genesis of a technique of aikido even if of a style with another one will be able to observe variations in the manner of apprehending them:
- absorption : At the time when the energy of the attack of uke is released (the attack leaves) tori moves to modify the target or the trajectory of the attack. It is in this phase that tori adapts the attack of uke instead of undergoing it.
- the entry : tori is dodged by a pivot, advancing on its with dimensions, etc the possibilities are numerous. It can also attack to oblige uke with a defense reaction and to exploit the latter thereafter.
- imbalance : tori imbalance the partner by using energy, speed, the force of this one ( ikkyo , nikyo , kotegaeshi …), of an imbalance maintained and directed of uke (kokyu-Ho…), etc
- the immobilization or projection : tori projects or immobilizes uke . Projection or the immobilization is done by a key (arm, with the wrist…) or on the head of uke
Richness of the movements
Omote and will ura - 表裏
The majority of the techniques can be practiced in two manners. To simplify, let us say that omote indicates the techniques carried out while entering vis-a-vis the adversary and will ura those carried out while entering behind the adversary. They correspond to possibilities different according to the attack from the partner and also in a frame of mind.
The techniques omote require to enter the attack of the adversary and thus increase the risk. Their success often requires to carry a atemi (a blow), marked here in manner symbolic system, to unbalance the adversary, to surprise it, force it to react.
It is often known as that in the beginning the techniques omote were shown to the pupils external of the schools of ju-jitsu , and the techniques will ura were techniques only taught with the boarders at the school.
Irimi and tenkan - 入身転換
It is the movement of the hips ( koshi ) of tori which constitutes the main motor of the techniques, that is to approach ( irimi , “to enter”) or to turn ( tenkan ). Indeed, it is on the level of the hips that the center of gravity of a person being in a stable position is. The remainder of the body (chest, arm) is only used to connect the hips of uke to those of tori to transmit the movement to them and to cause the fall. In the Japanese symbolic system, it is the seika tanden (the “center of energies”, located in the belly will hara , therefore associated with the hips) of tori which is the center of the movement.
All the movements thus have a combination irimi-tenkan . Rotation ( tenkan ) is sometimes called tai sabaki (rotation of the body) or koshi sabaki (rotation of the hips, since the movement of the body is in fact the movement of the hips).
The techniques can use inter alia:
- only the principle irimi : tori approaches uke what enables him to dodge the attack (the attack passes “behind” tori ) and to unbalance it (“to take its center”); they are the most direct techniques, but also most complicated to implement, the principal defect of the beginners being their tendency natural to enter while using the force;
- only the principle tenkan : the body is erased, letting pass the attack, and tori guide uke ; uke follows a circular trajectory whose center is tori ;
- a combination irimi-tenkan : tori between then swivels;
- a combination tenkan-irimi : tori swivels, then between taking the center of uke .
Techniques upright and with knees
The Japanese lived much sitted with same the ground, they thus developed the techniques to be able to face an attack whereas they had sat. The movements can thus be made when the two partners are upright ( tachi waza , 立技), when the two partners sat ( suwari waza , 座技), or when uke (the attacker) is upright and tori (the defender) sat ( hanmihandachi waza , 半身半立技).
Work with knees: Suwariwaza - 座技
Work with knee allows
- to naturally reinforce the flexibility and the force of the legs;
- to work the movement (a basic principle is not to compensate for the technical weakness by the force);
- to try out reports/ratios of size and force different from those met upright;
- to oblige to keep the top of the body to the vertical;
- to rather oblige work with the hips than with the legs.
See also: Suwari waza
Hanmi handachi waza - 半身半立技
In this work, uke , upright, attacks a tori with knees.
This work cumulates the difficulties inherent in work with knees and the fact that the position upright gives an advantage to uke in terms of power and capacity of displacement. This work obliges thus with a great rigor in obtaining imbalance and with great displacements with knees.
Role of the attacker ( uke )
The aikido insists on the fact that, whereas tori carries out the technique of aikido and leaves theoretically “victorious” each meeting, uke also gains in experiment while following the technique correctly, while répétitivement “being projected” or being brought on the ground and undergoing a key (profit in flexibility in this last case). Uke must permanently remain active and always to keep a martial attitude, as if he permanently sought a fault to strike, block, or turn over the situation; there exist besides techniques of against ( kaeshi waza ), uke not being able to turn over the situation that if it adopts a “perfect” attitude. The attempt to escape the action from tori is in addition the engine of certain movements, like irimi stroke : uke is brought towards the ground while swivelling, and when it tries to be restored, tori uses this movement to project it behind, if it did not try to be restored, uke would be in much worse posture since in impossibility of avoiding a atemi .
Thanks to his work as Uke, a practitioner indirectly learns the feelings from Tori. Even if there exists a certain coding of the work of Uke, it should not be forgotten that Tori must be able to practice the aikido even with nonaïkidokas.
Richness of the combinations - takemusu aiki (武産合気)
There is in fact only one relatively reduced number of techniques, but each technique can be done starting from a catch or of a different blow on behalf of uke , in omote or will ura (but not always), upright or with knees. Thus, the number of situations is in fact enormous, without counting the possibility, with high level, to change technique in the course of road (ōyō henka waza), or to turn over the situation ( kaeshi waza , uke takes again the advantage and becomes tori ).
In addition each technique can have a very high number of alternatives. The execution of much of techniques can moreover have to vary according to the levels of practice. Morihiro Saito, one of closest the disciple to the founder, had affirmed to evaluate with more than six hundreds the number of techniques, and that only for the practice with naked hands!
Morihei Ueshiba named this richness, this possibility of “infinite creation”, Takemusu aiki . The term takemusu aiki indicates in fact of manner broader the aikido like source of all martial arts, not on a historical level, but as an art containing the basic elements used in all other martial arts: management of the posture, the distances… (even if the postures and distances are different in other arts).
Installation of rotation of the wrist, allowing to mobilize uke , to direct it. This movement leaves the seka tanden (center), is transmitted by the muscular and energy chains. The installation of this movement was largely developed by Hirokazu Kobayashi (1929-1998).
The fundamental technique ikkyō - literally “first principle” - is a key of arm (articular lever) making it possible to bring uke on the ground by controlling the wrist and while making make an arc of circle to the elbow in direction of the head. All the movement of the body of tori is identical to that of a cut to the saber.
ikkyō can be done:
- in the form omote : tori advances in direction of uke ( irimi , tori “enters” and comes “to take the center” of uke ), and carries out a movement of cut of saber in direction of the head of uke ; it passes in front of uke to bring it on the ground;
- in the form will ura : tori on the spot carries out a movement of cut of saber then swivels ( tai sabaki , tenkan ); tori retouve behind uke , imbalance and rotation brings it on the ground.
ikkyō thus can be declined in
- have hanmi katate dori ikkyō omote : uke seizes the opposed wrist, tori between ( irimi ) while raising the hands and makes the form omote ;
- have hanmi katate dori ikkyō will ura : idem but form will ura ;
- gyaku hanmi katate dori ikkyō omote : uke seizes the wrist facing him, tori between ( irimi ) while carrying a atemi , seizes the wrist of uke with its freehand then made the form omote ;
- kata dori men uchi ikkyō omote : uke seizes the shoulder of tori , tori striking uke with the head in “pricking” with the fingers, uke moves back the bust and blocks striking; tori benefits from this imbalance to swivel ( tenkan ), thus involving uke , and makes the form omote ;
- suwari waza shomen uchi ikkyō omote : the two partners are with knee, uke carries an attack to the head, tori receives (avoids) with its arm and carries out ikkyō on the arm of attack;
Practice of the weapons
In addition to the naked techniques with hand, the aikido comprises the study of the handling of weapons out of wooden: the saber or Bokken which is used without the guard ( tsuba ), the stick or Jō , the knife or Tantō , and in a more anecdotic way the juken (bayonet), arms in which excelled the founder and who had been worth to him to be formative about it with the army.
The founder joined together in Jō techniques of lance, saber and Naginata (fauchard). The technique of saber which it developed is singularly different from that of the traditional schools. It is especially being studied of the latter that the founder devoted his energy with regard to the weapons.
The place of the weapons in the aikido is the object of a sharp debate. In fact, few schools control of it really the practice and the techniques with naked hands thus occupy generally the vast majority of the time of study.
Actually, Morihei Ueshiba forever directly taught the practice of the weapons, neither at the time of the training courses that it gave regularly, nor at the time of the courses which it exempted with the Hombu Dojo, the central dojo of the aikido in Tokyo. However, as it practiced them almost each day in its dojo personal in front of a restricted number pupils, this explains their relative ignorance. The transmission of this practice was done by the most graded primarily its Uchi deshi (student admitted to reside in the Dojo): Hikitsuchi Michio, Sadateru Arikawa and Morihiro Saito. This last, after the death of the founder, gathered the techniques which he had learned and worked out various exercises to allow their teaching. There exist thus ten kumijo (OJ against OJ) and five Kumitachi (ken against ken), all subjects with many alternatives, plus what the founder named “his work”: Ki Musubi No Tachi. Their martial validity is manifest, Morihei Ueshiba having studied many traditional schools besides. Thus, one notes obvious resemblances between certain techniques of the saber of the aikido and those of the school Kashima Shinto Ryu (for example, between " ichi No tachi" - aikido and the first kata " ipommé" - Kashima Shinto Ryu-).
In the branch Iwama ryu (pupils of Morihiro Saito), the practice of the weapons, bukiwaza (武器技), are put on the same plan as that at naked hands ( taijutsu ). The practice of the bokken is called there Aikiken and the practice of the jō Aikijō . Maître Saito explained that for the founder, the aikido was the study of the bukiwaza and the taijutsu , and that these two elements are indissociable.
By the repetition of exercises (“suburis” which can-being under consideration like a “alphabet” of elementary movements), the practitioner aims, inter alia, to carry out the unit of the body with the ken or the OJ which must thus truly become the " prolongation of sound corps". By extension of this principle, the feeling must become the same one with a partner who must be controlled in the same way and according to the same principles.
The practice of the weapons also makes it possible to apprehend various distances vis-a-vis one or more adversaries ( maai ), to work a correct posture ( shisei ) and to overcome the apprehension of the weapons. The study of the weapons is of more essential to the comprehension of a great number of techniques with naked hands.
Indeed, a great momentum are derived from the techniques used by the armed warriors, or many techniques used to disarm the adversary. Moreover, the visualization of a movement with a saber gives a clearer design of the movement to be carried out with naked hands. The techniques of saber had a great importance in the development of the aikido by Maître Ueshiba. Lastly, the school “Dayto Ryu” was a major source for the founder (Soké - agent/owner of this jutsu - was Maître Takéda, professor de Ueshiba), and this school includes/understands in particular a certain number of techniques with naked hands planned for the samurai having lost or broken whole or part of their saber, in easily assimilable gestures for a sabror. One can as consider as, basically, a technique of Aikido can be carried out effectively only if “the entry”, the moment of comparison between the two protagonists at the time of the attack is successful. It is the moment “aïki”, fraction of a second or the harmony is or is not, that the martial genius of Moriheï Ueshiba knew to perceive and develop. The practice of the weapons makes it possible to be focused mainly over this moment.
The practice of the weapons is very diverse:
- OJ (stick) against OJ;
- OJ against naked hands/naked hands against OJ, practical called “OJ dori” - when the adversary seized your OJ - or “swum OJ” - when it attacks you with a OJ;
- Bokken (saber) against bokken, practical called “ken tai ken”;
- Bokken against naked hands/naked hands against bokken, practical called “tachi dori”;
- Bokken against OJ/saber against stick, practical called “ken tai OJ”;
- Tanto (knife) against naked hands, practices called “tanto dori”;
- Juken (bayonet) against naked hands, practices called “juken dori” whose Moriheï Ueshiba was a long time instructor for the imperial armies;
The training can comprise several types of exercises:
- suburis: Movements carried out only intended to develop the control of the weapons and to learn various blows and postures;
- awases: Applications with partner of the suburis intended to work the harmonization;
- Kumijo/Kumitachi: “Sequence of combat” stereotyped with partner;
- Kata : Codified continuation of blows and techniques being able only to be carried out or to several;
Another weapon is practiced in certain schools of aikido: The bō (long stick) as well as the short stick or Tambō . The practice of the stick bō allows initially the right position of the hips and the feet, which is the same one as with naked hands.
With the the United States, some Dojo also teach techniques of disarmament with Pistolet S out of foam or wood, while in Africa, some dōjō practice techniques of defense against various types of Machette S.
On the level of the passages of rank, work with naked hands against the Jō or the Tantō is generally exigible starting from the first Kyū. Work with the Bokken , against naked hands or another Bokken , is exigible starting from the third daN. Of course, of the differences exist there too from one school to another.
Agreement of energies (principle of aiki )
The aikido is based on the principle of the “agreement of energies”. From a martial point of view, that is included/understood in three manners:
- to link energies of its own body ( via the seika tanden ) to act, coordinate the arms and the legs; in particular, one endeavors to drive the two hands together (as if they held a saber) by maintaining a certain extension of the arms, in order to better transmit the movement to the partner (by an action leverage) and to maintain a security distance (management of the distance, my have );
- to link energies of the two partners: tori will not be opposed to uke but on the contrary will accompany its movement, to agree to its rate/rhythm (management of the rate/rhythm, another direction of my have ); whereas uke expects to meet a resistance, it meets in fact the vacuum, and even an assistance to continue its movement, which causes its fall (the feeling is similar to a door which opens at the time when one tries to insert it). To take an image: when one étaie a wall, the wall and the stay are in opposition, they are reinforced mutually; the same if tori is opposed to uke , it reinforces it on its positions, it stabilizes it, whereas if it accompanies it in its movement, it maintains imbalance;
- to act like an intermediary between a state of violence and a state where violence is not any more: one lets the violence be spread where it cannot harm. One can compare the person who acts in this way to a “frontier runner of storms”: not that which prevents the storms from falling, but that which directs them so that they do not make a damage. He does not seek to dominate, but to free where there is fixing (on an emotion, violence or the attack like such, etc) After the releasing, it does not lead violence consciously - it would be a form of domination there - but lets it run towards a place predetermined, where it cannot harm, with more than 60.000 bachelors.
Practiced at the origin within the federation of Judo, the FFJDA, the aikido separated from this federation in 1982 with creation of two federations, FFAB (French federation of aikido and budo) and FFAAA (or 2F3A, French federation of aikido, aïkibudo and affinitaires). Both counsels by the Ministry for Youth and the Sports, these two federations are regularly pushed with fusion on behalf of the public authorities, the legislation allowing one approval by discipline. Because of approval, the UFA (French Union of Aikido), structure chapeautant the two federations, is only entitled to deliver ranks daN and diplomas of teaching recognized by the French State.
In addition to these two federations, there exists a great number of groups where the differences are orders teaching, techniques, spiritual, personal, hierarchical, sporting, etc These groups have their structures and systems of delivery of clean ranks.
- Directly related to the aikido:
- , Aikikai Hombu dojo of Tōkyō
- Aïkidojournal and its encyclopedia
- Aikiweb and its list of dojos
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