Aikido is a modern Japanese martial art developed by Morihei Ueshiba and the term is often translated as “the way of unifying (with) life energy” or as “the way of harmonious spirit.” Ueshiba wanted to create an art that people could use to defend themselves while preventing any injury, including to the attacker. This philosophy is based on the principles of harmony and the expression of love for all things and informs all Aikido techniques, which consist of entering and turning movements that redirect the momentum of an opponent’s attack.
Practicing Aikido provides many benefits. It helps to unify one’s body, mind, and spirit as training progresses, and offers a fun way to get exercise. Over time Aikido training will challenge one’s ego and promote kindness and sincerity. The ultimate goal of Aikido is step by step improvement of one’s character based on the rules of nature. We become resilient and strong inside but express our spirit’s strength softly.
In the natural world we find efficient, rational and soft movements, while inside you will find the immovable and firm center. This concept makes it possible to defend one self against an opponent of superior strength & size. Aikido movements may seem circular and soft on the surface but with some application of force Aikido can be very powerful. Through understating of this principle one can have physical exercise, gain spiritual development and learn proper etiquette and behavior to all humans one encounters in life.
This information is courtesy of the Aikido World Alliance website. Please visit them for more information on Aikido.