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Monday, June 29, 2009

Seminar and upgrading

Last weekend's seminar and upgrading sessions were a success. People from other dojos were there too (Thanks for coming, guys) . Congratulation to all "upgradees"! Keep up the good work! [Click the collage above for more pics.]

Monday, June 22, 2009

Upgrading and seminar

MYAIKIDO will be conducting two seminars and upgradings (one for adult, the other for children) on the 27 and 28 of June (respectively).

Forms, fees and schedule can be downloaded below:

Adult upgrade and seminar

Children upgrade and seminar

Best of luck to all upgradees,



Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Aikido violance?

Hafez forwarded me this article from Aikidojournal "The reluctant uke". It's a good read and something that most aikidoka would face (especially those with smaller physique like yours truly).

Anyway, this entry is to add to that article and how violance (either we realise it or not) has sipped into our beloved art.

When I came back from my studies in France (this was back in 2002), I was quite eager to find an aikido dojo here in KL (Malaysia). I finally joined this one dojo (who will stay anonymous to protect the innocent). Unfortunenately for me, my gi was utterly destroyed during transport from France to Malaysia (don't ask how). So, during my first few classes at this new dojo I was wearing a t-shirt and track bottom.

My first class was "interesting" to say the least. First off, our sensei was not there. The class was actually a "revision" class conducted by the students. No problem there. I guess, since I'm not wearing a gi, the students thought that I was brand new to aikido (I was a 3rd kyu). I was lumped with some of the new wide eyed kids (despite my age - of course I consider that as a complement :) ) that just joined in. One of our "senior" (a 5th kyu I think) thought us ikkiyo on suwari-waza and just like any other class ask us to repeate what he did.

Since I was from the Kobayashi school when I was in France my ikkiyo looks really "wierd" to them. I'm ok with them trying to correct me but one incident shock me to the very core.

When I do my ikkiyo on suwari-waza, after I pin my uke to the ground, I quickly release him while guarding him with an aitemi. Of course the aitemi is quickly transformed into a te-katana to receive the uke's next shuimenuchi. My seniors on the other hand insist that I pin the uke to the ground until he begs for merci. (Which in my opinion somewhat breaks the flow, but I just kept quiet). What was shocking was when they told me this:

"You should not just release your uke. If you went to a seminar and work with all the shodans and what not, if you just release him like that, he will get up and he will punch you in the face"


Punch me in the face?

Of course my aitemi would land on his chin long before that, but here's the problem:

What kind of a sick dojo where a shodan punches a 7th kyu in the face?

An aitemi just to shock you a bit once in a while is ok but even then, I won't do it to a 7th kyu.

To cut the long story short, I quit the dojo and for the next 5 years or so hangs my bokken, so to speak. I was wondering if its just that dojo (which is a famous dojo by the way) or is everyone in Malaysia try to "adopt" aikido to the street. The aikido that I learn in France was different. It was full of harmony, philosophy and what not (it also helps that my teacher was a lady) and here it's different.

Luckily enough I found MyAikido. The teaching philosophy here is really close to what I have learnt previously but it took me 5 years to get over that little incident.

I wonder how many other aikidoka gave up because of this street-fight, bang-the-nearest-7th-kyu mentality.


Monday, June 8, 2009

A bit of thought on aikido

One of the most frequent question people ask about aikido is this: Would aikido be useful in a street fight?

Here's my answer: Well, unless you're a 4th or 5th dan, I really don't encourage you to get into a street fight with only aikido. (maybe aikido plus a big iron rod ... but even then).

But then again, how many times you get involved in a street fight? (Please quit reading if your answer is more than 20 ... per day).

Aikido is all about love and peace, sugar and spice and everything nice. But aikido still resides in the real world and the real world is full of confrontations. We, as human, would face confrontations everyday, from our bosses, our children, our spouses, our friends, our coworkers etc. Heck, we even have confrontation with ourselves.

I really think that aikido, despite not being that useful in confronting a gang of thugs, is very powerful in confronting these day to day stuff. (and no I'm not suggesting an irimi nage on your nagging wife) .

Aikido is made of two things, practices and values. One of the values of aikido is to absorb negative energy from the uke (attacker), transform it to positive and give it back to the uke. Imagine in a, say, fight between husband and wife and the husband knows aikido and its values. The husband could first absorb any negative energy (i.e. let the wife speak her mind, let her finish with her katatedori if you prefer) . Transform that energy into positive without being destabilised (getting angry, blowing the proverbial fuse, using a direct counter attack etc.) and send it back (smile, say you're sorry and give her a hug .. ok ok , so you may get the old "don't touch me" but that's better than a race to see who can shout the loudest) .

Now you see how aikido can help with day to day confrontation.

Some may ask, these values are universal and anyone can use it. You don't need aikido for that. Sure, but what aikido does is to transform these values into practice so that, as human being, we can absorb it better. I.E. through practicing aikido, we internalize its values and can use it wherever these values are needed.

And that my friend, sure beat kicking butt in some street fight


MyAikido at MPOB, Bangi

We had a fun time demonstrating aikido at MPOB Bangi. Our host was friendly and the turnout was good. We demonstrated a few eye-opening moves (especially when bokken and jo was involved). Hopefully they'll open a club there.
For more photos , please visit []

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Sunday, June 7, 2009


My Aikido does not believe in binding its students to signed financial contracts. We believe in verbal agreements based on trust and honesty. Our part of the agreement is to offer you Aikido instruction of high quality. Your part of the agreement is to take part in the training and to pay your membership fees promptly when due without being asked.

One-Time Registration Fee:

1. RM 50 per person or family.
2. No contract required.
3. One time only. Returnee’s do not pay this fee ever again.

Monthly / Quarterly Membership Fees:

There is no discount for missed classes. If health concerns or other issues keep a member from attending classes for a prolonged period, a special leave-of-absence may be arranged, if needed. Please talk with an instructor or a deshi, who will bring the matter to the attention of Sensei, in confidence.

Payment Policy:

1. Fees are due on the 5th of the month.
2. My Aikido does not accept credit cards and cheques. Payment can be made via cash, online or personal checks.
3. Online payments must be notified to My Aikido and bank in slip to be retained as proof of payment.

Fees for Visitors and Guests:

Visitors from affiliated dojos may train at My Aikido at a fee of RM10 per session.

Special Circumstances:

For those people who need financial assistance, we offer help through our Scholarship Program. Ask an instructor or a deshi for a confidential application.

Registration fee:


(Single or family)



RM 60/month (1 session per week)
RM 70/month (2 sessions per week)
RM100/month (unlimited sessions)

- or-
Quarterly (every 3 months)

RM150 (1 session per week)
RM180 (2 sessions per week)
RM250 (unlimited sessions)

Junior (5-17 years)

RM 50/month (1 time training a week)


RM 10/session

Saturday, June 6, 2009

History of aikido

From wikipedia:

Aikido was created by Morihei Ueshiba (植芝 盛平 Ueshiba Morihei, 14 December 1883–26 April 1969), referred to by some aikido practitioners as Ōsensei ("Great Teacher"). Ueshiba envisioned aikido not only as the synthesis of his martial training, but also an expression of his personal philosophy of universal peace and reconciliation. During Ueshiba's lifetime and continuing today, aikido has evolved from the koryū (old-style martial arts) that Ueshiba studied into a wide variety of expressions by martial artists throughout the world.

Initial Development

Ueshiba developed aikido primarily during the late 1920s through the 1930s through the synthesis of the older martial arts that he had studied. The core martial art from which aikido derives is Daitō-ryū aiki-jūjutsu, which Ueshiba studied directly with Takeda Sokaku, the reviver of that art. Additionally, Ueshiba is known to have studied Tenjin Shin'yō-ryū with Tozawa Tokusaburō in Tokyo in 1901, Gotōha Yagyū Shingan-ryū under Nakai Masakatsu in Sakai from 1903 to 1908, and judo with Kiyoichi Takagi (高木 喜代子 Takagi Kiyoichi, 1894–1972) in Tanabe in 1911.

The art of Daitō-ryū is the primary technical influence on aikido. Along with empty-handed throwing and joint-locking techniques, Ueshiba incorporated training movements with weapons, such as those for the spear (yari), short staff (), and perhaps the bayonet (銃剣 jūken). However, aikido derives much of its technical structure from the art of swordsmanship (kenjutsu).

Ueshiba moved to Hokkaidō in 1912, and began studying under Takeda Sokaku in 1915. His official association with Daitō-ryū continued until 1937. However, during the latter part of that period, Ueshiba had already begun to distance himself from Takeda and the Daitō-ryū. At that time Ueshiba was referring to his martial art as "Aiki Budō". It is unclear exactly when Ueshiba began using the name "aikido", but it became the official name of the art in 1942 when the Greater Japan Martial Virtue Society (Dai Nippon Butoku Kai) was engaged in a government sponsored reorganization and centralization of Japanese martial arts.

Religious influences

After Ueshiba left Hokkaidō in 1919, he met and was profoundly influenced by Onisaburo Deguchi, the spiritual leader of the Ōmoto-kyō religion (a neo-Shinto movement) in Ayabe. One of the primary features of Ōmoto-kyō is its emphasis on the attainment of utopia during one's life. This was a great influence on Ueshiba's martial arts philosophy of extending love and compassion especially to those who seek to harm others. Aikido demonstrates this philosophy in its emphasis on mastering martial arts so that one may receive an attack and harmlessly redirect it. In an ideal resolution, not only is the receiver unharmed, but so is the attacker.

In addition to the effect on his spiritual growth, the connection with Deguchi gave Ueshiba entry to elite political and military circles as a martial artist. As a result of this exposure, he was able to attract not only financial backing but also gifted students. Several of these students would found their own styles of aikido.

International dissemination

Aikido was first brought to the West in 1951 by Minoru Mochizuki with a visit to France where he introduced aikido techniques to judo students. He was followed by Tadashi Abe in 1952 who came as the official Aikikai Hombu representative, remaining in France for seven years. Kenji Tomiki toured with a delegation of various martial arts through fifteen continental states of the United States in 1953. Later in that year, Koichi Tohei was sent by Aikikai Hombu to Hawaii, for a full year, where he set up several dojo. This was followed up by several further visits and is considered the formal introduction of aikido to the United States. The United Kingdom followed in 1955; Italy in 1964; Germany and Australia in 1965. Designated "Official Delegate for Europe and Africa" by Morihei Ueshiba, Masamichi Noro arrived in France in September 1961. Today there are aikido dojo available throughout the world.