Classes 7 Days/Week With our volunteer instructors, we are currently able to offer classes 7 days a week (weekday evenings and weekend mornings), with Tuesdays and Sundays designated as Basics classes. Please see the schedule below.
Classes for beginners and long-time students alike. Focus on foundational movements and techniques, falling, and weapon basics. TUES EVENINGS & SUN MORNINGS
Wooden sword and staff practices for Aikido.
The Founder trained with wooden sword (bokken) and wooden staff in Iwama, but didn't really 'teach' them per se. It was Morihiro Saito who absorbed these trainings and created partner practices and later augmented them with suburi and kata, and taught these practices to his students in Iwama and in his many teaching tours overseas. Through this, these Aiki-ken and Aiki-jo practices became an important part of the Iwama Aikido curriculum --something that distinguishes Iwama Aikido from other 'lineages' --though many aikidoists worldwide learn and practice Saito Sensei's weapon forms regardless of lineage affiliation.
Weapon techniques are included in our tests from the very beginning of a student's progression through the ranks. Focus is first on suburi (solo 'swings' ie strikes with the weapon), then solo forms (kata) and partner forms are brought in gradually.
We do Iwama Aikido Weapon practices on most Saturday mornings, and they may also be brought in to other classes during the week from time to time at the instructors' discretion.
AIKI-KEN & AIKI-JO
“When O-Sensei explained Aikido he always said that taijutsu (body techniques) and ken and jo techniques were all the same. He always started out his explanation of Aikido using the ken. Although he didn’t use a one-two-three method, he always taught us patiently and explained in detail what we should do.” ... “When I started teaching myself ... I classified and arranged his jo techniques. I rearranged everything into 20 basic movements I called “suburi” which included tsuki (thrusting), uchikomi (striking), hassogaeshi (figure-eight movements), and so on so it would be easier for students to practice them. I was taught first how to swing a sword. I organized what I learned and devised these kumijo and suburi for the sword. O-Sensei’s method may have been good for private lessons, but not for teaching groups. In his method, there were no names for techniques, no words. This was why I organized the movements into tsuki (thrusts), uchikomi (strikes) and kaeshi (turning movements) and gave them names.”