Northampton KSK Aikido
Contact:
Ian Geddes: 07970 894305
Ed Hawtin: 07827 329265

About Aikido

Welcome to Northampton's premier Aikido club.


The meaning of the word "Aikido"
Aikido in Japanese is made up of three characters or kanji. The first and most important is "AI" which means "to meet, come together and harmonise". The second kanji is "KI" which means "the spirit (of the universe) or soul". The third or last character is "DO" which means "the way or path", as in Kendo or Judo, to signify that the study of Aikido does not involve only self-defence techniques but includes positive character-building ideals which a person can incorporate into his or her daily life.

The Philosophy Of Aikido
The most unusual aspect of Aikido is that although it is primarily a self defence art, it takes as the basis of its philosophy the idea of being in harmony with the opponent rather than being in conflict. The ideal of Aikido is not to think of defeating the enemy but rather to be in harmony with him, spiritually and physically. This is why Aikido is sometimes called the art of non resistance or the non fighting martial art.
Aikido is more than an art of self-defence. Into it are woven elements of philosophy, psychology & dynamics. As one learns the various techniques one will at the same time train one's mind, improve one's health and develop self-confidence. Through the physical practice of the self defence techniques the student comes to appreciate and understand the mental and spiritual aspect of Aikido. During the practice sessions partners work in harmony with each other, learning when and how to yield, how to lead and guide another persons movements and how to down an opponent through non-aggressive techniques.

Aikido Movement and Techniques
The movement of Aikido emphasise a flowing flexibility and the maintaining of balance. The aim of the Aikidoka is to be in complete control of his or her mind and body, and to maintain a calm, alert posture. The continuous and flexible motion, which originates at the waist, is like the performance of a dance, a graceful spherical motion. Much of the beauty of the Aikido movements derives from the co-ordinated motion of the entire body, with each movement of a part of the body contributing to the integrated sequence of movements.
Most of the joint techniques, such as those applied to the wrist or elbow, flex the joints in the direction of natural bending. They are in harmony with natural flexing, and although such techniques can be painful and effective if resistance is offered, they result in no permanent joint damage.

Aikido and Other Martial Arts
How does Aikido compare with other martial arts? This question is often asked at demonstrations, and is best answered by understanding that Aikido is among other things a pure art form. Like music, sculpture or dance, each art form is beautiful in its own right and each draws followers because of its particular beauty. The martial arts are similar; each has its own essence and appeal to a different kind of person.
It is suggested that a person interested in studying the martial arts first visits as many of the different arts as possible, selecting the one that best pleases them.

When Does The Next Course Begin?
When you are born into this world, your life on earth begins. This does not mean, however, that the rest of the world stops and a new course begins. Aikido, like life moves according to natural law, therefore is a continuous stream. We ask the beginner to view Aikido not as a course, but as a lifelong learning experience. There is no new course beginning; you simply start by stepping into the stream when you feel ready. i.e. Onto the mat!

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