What is Aikido?
AI-KI-DO ("Eye-key-dough") can be defined as The Way, In Connection, with the Spirit. "Spirit", is the energy or intention of an attack.
Aikido is a reasonably new martial art when compared with other combative systems like Chinese Wushu (Commonly known as Kung Fu ), or Iaijutsu or Kenjutsu (Sword arts) etc.
Developed in the early 1900's in Japan, Aikido is a strictly defensive practice that utilizes the power, energy and motion of an attacker, or "Uke", to unbalance him or her, rendering their attack ineffective. The art also employs joint locks, throws and submission holds. Practically speaking, by using your attacker's energy as your defense, there is no need to be stronger or tougher than the assailant, so Aikido has real advantages when compared with many of the striking arts. Aikido is also a very "morally positive" form of martial arts practice because with proper training, little or no injury needs to occur to an attacker during applications for self-defense.
The founder of Aikido, Morihei Ueshiba, practicing as "Nage", (defender) completes a technique, compelling his "Uke" (attacking partner) to take a back break-fall. Rolls & falls (Ukemi waza) are a main part of an Aikido Ka's (student's) education.

Note O'Sensei's relaxed posture and freindly demeanor. There is no tense, aggressive stance. No fists clenched in the air. Uke is controlled but does not need to be beaten into submission. This is the essence of the "Harmony" one often hears about when discussing Aikido and why it is different then other martial arts. This peace in training hides the reality of Aikido's true practicality and effectiveness. At a "Martial Level" Aikido is one of the most effective defensive arts in existance. In a good school both the harmonious movements and the practical martial movements will be practiced.

Aikido as it is found today, (as well as, Nihon Goshin Aikijutsu, and for the most part, Judo, and the Korean art Hapkido,) is derived from Jujutsu and moreover Aiki Jujutsu Daitoryu.
Sokaku Takeda was one of the modern patriarchs for the latter of the two. The brutally effective, & ancient Japanese martial art, which supplanted even older systems of bujutsu (warrior arts) is still practiced today, but Aiki-Jujutsu is not as prevalent as Aikido.

Jujutsu or Jiu-Jitsu, as taught today often has an AIKI influence more than the older styles that predated the Daito Ryu. Most of the older "Koryu" systems are very private and rare. Today's Jiu Jitsu and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu systems hold many of their roots in Jigoro Kano's Judo Art. Aikido itself also contains elements of Kano's Judo. Many schools now simply choose to focus on competition. Aikido does not.
Commonly referred to as O'Sensei, ( Great Teacher) Morihei Ueshiba was a student of the Daitoryu and many other Budo. He created Aikido as an amalgamation of the main themes of Aiki Jujutsu plus the other martial arts in which he was educated. In the early days of his Aikido, the art was very technique oriented and still a "Harder" style of practice than what is commonly seen today in aikido schools. As time passed, he incorporated his own philosophies and a great deal of spiritual wisdom to add a softer side to his budding martial art. As years went by Morihei's skills in Aikido became so masterful that he attracted global attention in martial arts communities. He believed that a certain level of enlightenment could be found in the loving, partners-practice of Aikido.
Morihei's Aikido is not generally practiced as a "self-defense" martial art. It is more often undertaken for the growth of its practitioners. Aikido IS, however, an fantastic form of self-defense when practiced properly. At Aikido Heiwa we try to practice the lessons and philosopies of O'Sensei as we believe he would have wanted.
(We do not teach any of Ueshiba's religious beliefs however.) If you are interested in more information about O'Sensei and the esoteric practices his Aikido often includes please visit our links page for several good resources on traditional Aikido.
One notable feature of all Aikido is that it not only includes what may be the most effective defenses for any attack, but a wide variety that could suit students of different body sizes, flexibilities and capabilities. This creates a well rounded system for self-defense, and through regular training, aikido also creates a sense of personal growth, balance and well being. Aikidoists tend to be very happy.
O'Sensei's influence on the world is incredible. He taught so many great students. They in turn have passed on their information and their influence to further generations of students and have spread the Aikido of Ueshiba around the world. There are schools, associations and affiliations spanning the globe. Thousands of people each year find their way to beginning the walk into the Aikido lifestyle.
Morihei Ueshiba's influence on the martial arts world is probably stronger than any other single master of any specific martial arts system. Many of his students went on to open their own schools in Japan and around the world. Even today students of Aikido search out the remaining teachers that once studied under O'Sensei directly. There are thousands of great schools of Aikido around the world today.
Mitsugi Saotome - Shihan studied under O-Sensei directly for over 15 years and taught there for many more. (In group pic above, Saotome is 3rd from the left over O-Sensei's Shoulder.) He created the "Aikido Schools of Ueshiba" organization, "ASU" to spread the teachings of O-Sensei to a new country. Saotome refered to America as "a great experiment" bringing many cultures together to one land.
He has spread Aikido all over this country as well as 9 others, through over 125 associated dojos, including Aikido Heiwa.
Holloway is seen here with Saotome-Shihan and George Ledyard - Sensei at an aikido event in Montana in 2004.
Aikido Heiwa's head instructor, W. Holloway travels extensively around the US & Canada practicing with other instructors and visiting in other schools. He believes that "every teacher should always be a student," so he continues to seek out fellow martial artists and contemporaries with whom he can share ideas, training time, and from whom he is proud to learn from. Holloway is currently a regular student in two other dojos. He attends major seminars and clinics around the country each year and he brings many guest instructors to AIKIDO HEIWA as a service to his students. Aikido Heiwa is a dojo evolving to bennefit the students.
George Ledyard - Sensei, Will Holloway, and Hiroshi Ikeda -Shihan pose for a shot after a weekend seminar in Belleview, Wa.
Mr. Holloway is an instructor of aikido in the Aikido Schools of Ueshiba association, with whom Mr. Ledyard is a 6th Dan.
Hiroshi Ikeda - Shihan is a top instructor in charge of the ASU, under Mitsugi Saotome - Shihan, the organization's founder. Mr. Holloway continues his regular training with Ledyard - Sensei and at all of the main seminars with Saotome and Ikeda - Senseis.

What is Nihon Goshin Aikido? NGA Info Page.
There is another type of "aikido" that is practiced, that does NOT stem from the teachings of O'Sensei. The art was called "NIHON GOSHIN AIKIDO". The Nihon Goshin name means Japanese Self-defense. The same basic principles found in "Traditional" aikido, are practiced in a specific set of unique techniques, whose application are intended for practical self-defense. Aikido Heiwa's chief instructor is a certified instructor of NGA.
We refer to the system as Goshin-Jutsu, which means self-defense art. It is rooted more in the Jujutsu style of practice and it avoids confusion with mainstream aikido that is much more prevalent in the world today.
For more information about Nihon Goshin Aikido please visit our
Nihon Goshin page. History and some photographs are provided.

In the fall of 2003 we created the Martial Arts Fellowship for Peace,
( M.A.F.P. )
It is an organization of faith minded martial artists and instructors from different martial arts disciplines, who share similar goals in teaching and for the future of our world, its children and citizens. Seminars and retreats are available. Contact for membership info for the M.A.F.P.

The Heiwa school is also the birthplace of the Christian Aikido Fellowship, the world's First organized Christian Faith based aikido association. Membership and Dojo Charters are available.

Mr. Holloway created and leads an outdoors sports and recreation group called C.O.R.E. The Cooperative Outdoors Recreation Experience.

C.O.R.E. specializes in backcountry hiking, camping and climbing adventures for youth and adults. Other adventure sports trips are also part of the program including mountain biking, rafting, and even motorsports.

Aikido Heiwa is one of many dojos in the Seattle Washington area, but the only Full Time school serving the Lynnwood, Edmonds, Mountlake Terrace, Shoreline, and Everett communities. We are also a very unique school with a fun atmosphere that has attracted people from all walks of life to join and stay.



Last updated: 3/3/08
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