Aikido is a Japanese martial art that was developed by Morihei Ueshiba (often referred to as “O Sensei” or “Great Teacher” by students of aikido). This particular practice was created as a combination of O Sensei’s studies of the martial arts of Daito-ryu Aiki-Jutsu, philosophy and religion. Aikido was formally adopted as the name of this art in 1942, and is typically translated as “the way of harmonious spirit”.
Aikido holds something for everyone, whether it is physical fitness, flexibility and balance, self defense or tranquility.
Aikido is unique amongst the martial arts as practitioners focus on using the momentum and strength of the attacker to defend themselves; emphasis is also placed on protecting both the practitioner and the attacker from injury. As such it is used by many people in law enforcement and mental health professions to learn to deal with physical confrontation with minimal harm or injury. In addition, due to the use of the attacker’s force and momentum, the use of the practitioner’s strength can be minimized, allowing persons all of sizes and fitness levels to participate.