The Origins and Philosophy of Aikido
Aikido (合気道) is a Japanese Martial Art developed during the 1920s by Morihei Ueshiba (1883~1969), an expert who reached the highest level of mastery in the classical Japanese Martial Arts including jujitsu, and the use of sword and spear.
Aikido is performed by anticipating and blending with the motion of the attacker, redirecting the force of the attack, rather than opposing it head-on. Aikido is deliberately non-aggressive and non-competitive, which is reflected in the name “aikido”, which translates as “the way of harmonious spirit.” It is a true and very effective self defense.
Aiki Kai Australia
Aiki Kai is the international Aikido foundation, based in Japan, which is headed by the doshu, the living successor of the founder of Aikido. In its name, Kai (会) simply means assembly or club.
Aiki Kai Australia was founded by Sugano Shihan in 1965 under the direct authorisation of the Aikido Founder Ueshiba Morihei O’Sensei. Sugano Shihans teachings, and indeed those of the founder, continue through their direct students in Australia and the world.
Aiki Kai Australia is recognised by the Aiki Kai Foundation and the Aikido World Headquarters, Tokyo, Japan. It is a National organisation and the sole Australian member organisation of the International Aikido Federation in Tokyo and thus is linked worldwide.
Memberhip of Aiki Kai Australia provides international connections and access to Australia wide and international training. National benefits include biannual training schools, a nationally maintained training curriculum and regular visits from accredited interstate instructors.
Aiki Kai Tasmania
Aiki Kai Tasmania is not-for-profit and totally volunteer run. We presently operate 4 main dojos distributed around the State in Deloraine, Devonport, Launceston, and Hobart. Click here to see dojo locations, or click here to see Tasmanian Aikido Instructor Profiles.
Aikido began in Tasmania back about 1964 when Arthur Moorshead, one of Australia’s leading Judo instructors, demonstrated Aikido in Launceston. He was assisted by, among others, a very young Tony Smibert (now 7th dan and based in our Deloraine dojo). Among those who witnessed this were a similarly very young David Brown (now 6th dan) and Mr Peter Yost who consequently founded the Tasmanian Aiki Kai. Yost Sensei’s story is really the Tasmanian Aiki Kai story because of the significance of his contribution to Aikido in Australia as one of Sugano Shihan’s closest and most trusted students and advisors.
Sugano Shihan first arrived in Sydney in 1965 and Peter Yost then invited him to come down to Tasmania for a series of courses, which became the precursor to Sugano Shihan’s now annual Summer and Winter Schools. Our state organisation also grew from there.
Sadly Yost Sensei passed away in 1999. While he is fondly remembered by all who knew him personally, his real heritage is found in the many enthusiastic students who have passed through our dojos, and in our instructors, who remain inspired by his effort and example. Similarly, Tasmanian (as well as Australian) AIkikai is still very much following the path blazed by our revered teacher Sugano Shihan, who sadly passed away in 2010.