Ishiki- Kai Iwama-ryu Aikido Dojo
Aikido was founded in the early part of this century in Japan by its creator Morihei Ueshiba, aka O' Sensei (Great teacher).
Aikido translates as "The way of harmony with the forces of nature."
Which is apt as it is a non-aggressive martial art that focuses on harmonising self with your opponent, using their natural force, such as momentum and mass, against themselves. It does not involve punches and kicks, but rather, a series of powerful wrist locks and throws.
Through its graceful and powerful techniques, Aikido teaches us to respect ourselves and others giving us a way to interact positively with the people and world around us. It has the ability to show us our full potential, helping us to improve ourselves each day in our lives.
It is a martial art of two parts. Uke (the attacker) is taught to respect their training partner and attack properly so that Tori (the defender) can practise their technique properly. Uke is also taught to fall properly and safely as you are more likely to trip over in life then engage in a fight. Tori is taught how to defend themselves from an attack and respect their training partner (Uke) by helping them to fall safely (after all, we all have work to go to tomorrow).
Through this training of two parts, Tori and Uke learn to harmonise their movement with each other and work as a team. It is because of this that corporate companies in Japan and worldwide have used Aikido to break down the barriers in the office and teach their employees to work well as one unit. Aikido is a great martial art to involve children in, as students of Aikido learn to work together and have great respect for each other, giving them confidence in themselves and each other.
O'Sensei believed that, "Aikido is not a technique to fight and defeat an enemy. It is a way to reconcile the world and make human beings one family."