What is Aikido?
Aikido is a traditional budo. Developed in Japan in the early 20th century by Morehei Ueshiba, it employs a series of joint locks and throws designed to use an opponent’s mass and motion against them.

Who Trains?
Aikido can be practiced by almost everyone. It does not rely on strength for effectiveness. Individuals of all body types and skill levels can and do train in Aikido.

Why Aikido?
Aikido promotes stamina, flexibility and mental clarity. It’s good for self-defense as well as stress relief. As with all martial arts, Aikido’s principles go beyond the physical elements. Besides, it’s just plain fun to do.

About Aikido
The name Aikido is composed of three characters:

Ai – Harmony
Ki – Spirit or Energy
Do – Path or Way
Thus the name translates to The Way of Peace and Harmony or the Unifying Life Energy.

While the physical aspects of Aikido allow for self-defense, the underlying philosophy teaches that everyone has the right to defend themselves, but should be able to choose to do so without causing lasting harm to another. In today’s digital world, this can be important.

Aikidoists train to neutralize an attack by redirecting the attacker’s mass and motion. The art uses pins, joint locks, and throws to subdue an opponent. As a traditional Japanese budo, it also relies on intense training and martial spirit.

Seminar held at Iowa City Aikikai, October 2016. Guest instructor was Mary Heiny. Attended by representatives from Sangamon Aikikai.

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