Koga Sensei (1930 - 2013) at the Aikido Institute (9/22/2012)
On September 22, 2012, Robert Koga Sensei gave a seminar at the Aikido Institute --the second time he was invited to teach at our dojo.
Koga Sensei was a fascinating man who lived an extraordinary life, from Japanese interment to the military and then a police officer in Los Angeles, California. His bio can be found on this page of the Koga Institute, which he founded to teach effective hand-to-hand skills to law enforcement officers.
In terms of Aikido, Koga Sensei had met and trained with Aikido legend Koichi Tohei Sensei, and adeptly picked up skills in controlling ki. He credited the insights he gained from training with Tohei Sensei with crystallizing his vision for what would become his training methodology. He obtained Tohei Sensei's permission to alter Aikido techniques for military and law enforcement purposes.
Koga Sensei demonstrating a proper choke during his first visit to AI in 2011.
We remember Koga Sensei's humor and good spirit. He had many wonderful and fascinating stories. And he displayed some super effective variations on Aikido techniques, meant to be applied in law enforcement situations.
Koga Sensei shared some ki 'tricks' as well. He demonstrated sinking his center so that he was impossible to pick up. He also demonstrated a way to trick an attacker's mind into tensing the body, to make them more easily throw-able.
We were fortunate to have a chance to meet and train with Koga Sensei. May he rest in peace.