A Brief History of Aikido Martial Arts

Morihei Ueshiba was the person who founded aikido martial arts. He was born in Japan on the 14 December 1883. He was encouraged as a young boy to engage in athletics. He also happened to have a great-grandfather who was a great Samurai (Kichiemon).

After seeing his father being attacked for his connections and political beliefs, Ueshiba wanted to become strong enough to be able to defend himself. It was at this time in his life that he started training in martial arts, which was disrupted by his military service.

After a number of years of different types of training, it became serious for him in 1915 when he started to study Daito-ryu Aiki-Jejutsu. Ueshiba had a lot to do with Daito-ryu for 22 years, after which he started to refer to this form of martial art as Aiki Budo and the art became formally known as Aikido in 1942. It was 1951 when Aikido was first introduced to Western society by Minoru Mochizuki.

Many Aikido practitioners and students still refer to Ueshiba as Osensei (great teacher) today.

The Characteristics of Aikido

Ueshiba once said that “To control aggression without inflicting injury is the art of peace” and this sentence seems to explain both Aikido’s philosophical and physical teachings.

Aikido is a defensive art, where practitioners are taught how to use their attacker’s power and aggression against them. This is done by using joint locks, throws and pins.

Aikido is normally learned via practice with pre-arranged two person forms (katas). One of the two people become the attacker (uke) and the other person uses Aikido techniques to subdue the attacker (nage). Many of the movements used in these practices do resemble the movements of a sword, which indicates that Aikido used weapons in the past.

Higher level students do sometimes use weapons when free sparring and in defence when there are multiple attackers.

The Basic Goals of Aikido

The most basic goal of Aikido is to defend yourself against an attacker in the least harmful way that you can. It is a peaceful form of martial arts. There are many sub styles of Aikido that have emerged over the years.

These are three examples of famous figures who stand out in the art

Steven Seagal:

He is a 7th Dan Black Belt in this form of martial arts. He is also the first foreign person to run a dojo in Osaka. He moved to Japan and then went on to make his debut film in 1988. He has since appeared and starred in many films.

Kisshomaru Ueshiba:

Kisshomaru Ueshiba is the third child born to Morihei Ueshiba and he went on to become a Aikido leader (international) when his father died. When his father died, he became the second doshu (keeper of the way). Kisshomaru played a huge part in bringing Aikido to other countries around the world.

Moriteru Ueshiba:

He is the son of Kisshomaru (now deceased)and now Moriteru is the third doshu.

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- Japanese - Primier Aikido Martial Arts Fighting Styles
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A Brief History of Aikido Martial Arts, Morihei Ueshiba was the person who founded aikido martial arts. He was born in Japan on the 14 December 1883. He was encouraged as a young boy to engage in athletics. He also happened to have a great-grandfather who was a great Samurai (Kichiemon).
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