Aikido, "the path of Aiki," is a modern Japanese martial art developed by Morihei Ueshiba and his successors. Aikido is performed by blending with the motion of the attacker and redirecting its momentum using entering and turning movements rather than opposing it using physical strength. The techniques are completed with various throws, submissions, or joint locks.
It derives mainly from Takeda's Daito-ryu Aiki-jujutsu but began to diverge from it in the late 1920s, probably due to Ueshiba’s commitment to resolve conflict without harming the opponent. As Ueshiba slowly separated from Takeda's approach, he also began to implement more changes into the art of Aiki-jujutsu finally leading, mainly due to the influence of his son Kisshomaru, to develop the art of Aikido. His Aiki-jujutsu changed: striking techniques became less important and the formal curriculum became simpler with a greater emphasis on what is now referred to as kokyu nage, or “breath throws” which are soft and blending, utilizing the opponent’s movement in order to throw them. Many of these techniques are in fact rooted in the aiki-no-jutsu portions of the Daito-ryu curriculum rather than the more direct curriculum of joint-locking techniques.
Nowadays, Ueshiba’s senior students have different approaches to Aikido, depending partly on when and how long they studied with him. Today Aikido is found all over the world in a number of styles, with broad ranges of interpretation and emphasis. However, they all share techniques transmitted from Takeda through Ueshiba and most style have a deep concern for the well-being of the attacker.
We teach and promote the martial art of Aikido in the tradition of the late Hirokazu Kobayashi shihan (8th dan Aikikai). We operate under the supervision of Kenzo Egami shihan (6th Dan Aikikai) and we are affiliated with the Aikido Osaka Buikukai - Aikikai Foundation, currently headed by Jiro Kimura shihan (8th dan Aikikai).
Among the unique features of Kobayashi's Aikido are the meguri (spiral flowing), kaeshi waza (counter techniques), renraku waza (combinations of techniques), randori (sparring), and the importance given to aikitaiso (development of aiki). While affirming our own technical identity and unique tradition, we respect and seek cooperation with the variety of styles of Aiki based disciplines taught worldwide by the students of Morihei Ueshiba and his master Sokaku Takeda thus honoring their memory and legacy.
We practice Aikido according to the ethical, technical, and philosophical principles transmitted by Hirokazu Kobayashi through his successors. We understand that Aikido is a practice that has no religious significance or sectarian structure but introduces individuals to an ethical dimension which can be summarized as it follows: to be connected with the other and to put ourselves at the center of a conflict instead of rejecting it.
Our founding principles are a technical alignment to the Buikukai style of Kenzo Egami shihan and Jiro Kimura shihan, a democratic approach to club administration, a commitment to diversity and inclusiveness, and a commitment to respectful and safe training.
While our organization is devoted to teach a traditional form of Aikido under the auspices of the Aikikai Foundation, some of our instructors actively engage with the broader martial arts and combat sports community.
Any martial artist should discover the weaknesses in their training and fix them with training in other arts. Aikido is no exception. Most of Ueshiba's direct students were well-rounded martial artists and we believe it is a duty to complement our Aikido practice with the study of basic principles of striking and grappling as well as a deep understanding of its Daito-ryu origins. Likewise we are confident that Aikido has a unique set of skills to offer to practitioners of other disciplines.
Our technical director, Kenzo Egami, is a direct student of Hirokazu Kobayashi shihan. Our senior instructors have trained extensively in Aikido and received teachings from several world renown teachers. In the Buikukai lineage, they have trained extensively in Osaka, Japan, as well as at European seminars, and at Egami's dojo in Southern California. Together they created a network in the US for the practice of Aikido as taught by Kobayashi shihan and they offer a great wealth of knowledge and experience on the mat.