View Full Version : Discovering Aikido -- Book Online

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Rupert Atkinson
01-13-2011, 02:58 PM
I have recently uploaded my entire book Discovering Aikido: Principles for Practical Learning to my website:


My publisher decided not to reprint etc - cited recession, low volume book sales, etc, etc, so I got the Rights back. I was thinking of looking for another publisher but gave up so here it is. I have added some parts here and there, and have yet to sort out the pictures (which will take some time). Could this be the first entire book uploaded for free I wonder? I might reconsider if my website data goes over its quota ... and they start charging me for you to read ... but that probably won't happen unless there are too many pics. Wait and see I guess.

01-15-2011, 04:38 PM
it looks like a very nice and interesting book.. thanks for sharing my friend...

if you need some help with publishing it online and things related to web-development please let me know, i think i can donate with some help.

Rupert Atkinson
01-18-2011, 08:24 PM
Thanks for the offer - but not needed.

I have uploaded about half my pics now. Can't find the other half at present though I did find a lot of negatives.

:ai: :ki: seeker at work ...

01-19-2011, 09:43 AM
It's cool of you to put it up like that. Thanks!

01-30-2011, 09:15 PM
That's great of you to do that, Rupert!

Have you thought of offering it as an ebook?

01-31-2011, 11:42 PM
Have a look at Lulu.com (http://www.lulu.com/). a self-publishing service that's well setup and easy to use (mostly). They don't care how many copies are printed and sold. I made a book for my Mom of an old out print text and bought only two copies.

The print, paper and binding quality was as good or better than most common paperbacks at the bookstore. I was and am very impressed. I did have some problems, not discovered until I received the finished product unfortunately, with discoloured background on the images separating chapters. A few more moments setting transparency properly would have fixed it I think. In any case it's a good idea to order a copy for yourself before telling all and sundry about it.

The major drawback for small volumes is shipping prices. You have to really want the title to pay $10 shipping for a $15 book. On the other hand they'll sell to bookstores too, no matter what their size, so if folks can find a local independent retailer to bring it in they might save a little.

There are other self-publishing houses which can net a lower per-unit cost, and thus potentially more profit to the author, but they generally involve a lot more work up front and the pricing structures aren't as transparent or flexible (Lulu let's the author set the price at whatever they like above a certain minimum). At least that was the case when I last looked into this four years ago. It may be different now.

Oh yeah, one more nice touch: if the author forgoes their percentage cut, Lulu will print and sell the book at cost.
They do ebooks too (ok, so that was two more things!).

Rupert Atkinson
02-01-2011, 12:10 AM
Not really thought about the e-book thing. It still needs a bit of sorting and I will do so when I get time. I wrote it all maybe six/seven years ago and I have moved on since then in many ways, though many of the ideas therein remain valid (for me). Can't find some of the old pics so will have to take some new ones ... it's all about that magic word - 'time'.

Rupert Atkinson
02-12-2011, 01:12 AM
Just a quick note:

If you want to see what is in the book, click on the Contents link in the left frame. Then click on the new links for each chapter that appear etc.

02-12-2011, 09:41 AM
It's an interesting book and my only critique is I think you misinterpret George Silver's True and False times in relation to Aikido. But it's a minor thing. :)

Rupert Atkinson
05-14-2011, 03:01 AM
I have finally gotten around to sorting out a few formatting issues. Still need to find a few more pics. It's a work in progress but it's 95% there. Hope you like it.

05-14-2011, 07:23 AM
Thank you so much, once again, Rupert for this kind gesture.


Rupert Atkinson
02-11-2012, 02:53 PM
Just been looking at my website stats. Not so many hits, maybe 5 a day on avaerage, but some of those 'hits' are spending a lot of time on the site - 10 to 80 minutes, which is good. If you read it and have a question, feel free to ask. I may be a bit late in answering sometimes as I am very busy.

02-12-2012, 09:48 PM
Hi Rupert,
I think you are hiding your light under a bushel as the site is not so well ranked on google or optimised for it as yet.A craft in itself for the web publisher. PM me if you like

Rupert Atkinson
02-15-2012, 02:33 AM
Not worried. If my bandwith exceeds a certain limit I may have to pay so it's enough that it is here on aikiweb.

Chuck Clark
02-15-2012, 07:54 AM
Interesting book in my opinion. A good book... of course I say that because I agree with most of what you write about. I've always found, over the years, your attitudes about budo to be sound. Well done and thanks for putting it out for everyone that wants it.

I would urge you to really consider the online publishing route.

Best regards,

Rupert Atkinson
11-05-2012, 09:35 PM
Does anyone know how to get a book sorted into something like an app for an iPhone? Also, if you publish as an e-book, do you lose all rights to the book forever?

11-06-2012, 07:18 AM
Hi Rupert,

Rather than turning it into an app as such, I'd look at rendering it in one or more popular e-book formats (there are fierce religious wars about which of these formats is "best", and also much less exciting (but more useful) empirical data about which of these formats will reach more people). As far as your rights, I don't think that the medium changes those, at least as far as legalities go. Unless you are willing to get into the whole DRM thing (where technology does the enforcement for you), I think you'll have practical issues preventing people from distributing individual copies, but with a little vigilance you can probably prevent wholesale distribution.

iron horse
03-25-2013, 01:26 PM
Wow - great reading! I met Rupert a few times in Korea. A lot of this reading is deja-vu for me, it's like I knew it already, but I didn't know that I knew it.

Rupert Atkinson
07-18-2013, 01:23 AM
I made a Facebook page for my book a while ago. Hope this works:

Am thinking of making a video at some point to get my ideas across. Still need to make it into an Ebook or go the self-publishing route. Everything just takes time.

07-18-2013, 02:05 AM
Hi Rupert

Just applied to join the FB group, a video is a great idea as well. I'd already had a good read on the web version but I picked up a hard copy of the original via amazon the other day as it's always nice to have the real thing. I enjoy your didactic yet slightly whimsical style, and the structure is original. Good stuff all round in fact. :)



Rupert Atkinson
10-28-2013, 05:25 PM
I have been making slight changes here and there to my material. I always welcome comment. It is still being developed ... and is lacking certain pics. Am also beginning to look at sorting it out for e-book format but for the time being it shall remain here. And then, some videos.

Conrad Gus
10-29-2013, 10:53 AM

You fooled me with the title. I thought this was going to be an introductory book, but it is actually a very advanced discussion.

I normally eschew aikido books, but after having looked through a few sections at random I think I will be reading this cover to cover. The writing is clear and there is a lot of practical wisdom. It is humble without avoiding taking a strong stance on controversial topics.

I really like this book. Thanks for making it available for free. I can only imagine the amount of effort that has gone into this over the years.


Rupert Atkinson
03-26-2014, 04:18 PM
I just arrived in Tokyo and will be here for a few months. Would be fun to meet / exchange ideas if anyone is out there.

Rupert Atkinson
08-04-2014, 04:00 AM
After a few months training in Japan again (Kobayashi Dojo) I am now back in Sheffield, UK. If anyone who knows me (or not) is around, feel free to contact me - always keen to train someplace to exchange ideas. Have just done a few hours of Taichi stuff with a friend from almost 30 years ago.

Rupert Atkinson
12-04-2014, 11:00 PM
I am now back in Korea as of last September. If anyone gets the mind to come to Korea feel free to pm me to ask whatever. I am working at Yongin University, which is well-known for its martial arts programs.

12-05-2014, 11:22 PM
Excellent reading, informative and inspiring

Rupert Atkinson
08-13-2015, 03:26 AM
Well, I finally got around to updating my website. The publisher failed to return one set of pics so I scanned the missing ones from a copy of the book. Not brilliant, but it seems to work. It is not really a picture book though. I have also altered bits here and there and added some parts as the book was written over ten years ago and some of my ideas have changed a little. When I get more time I will write a lot more ...

I hope people like it :-)

Rupert Atkinson
02-09-2016, 08:36 PM
I have spent the last year and a half in South Korea. Spent another year in Japan before that. I work at Yongin University which is famous for its martial arts programmes and have had the chance to meet all sorts of interesting people (main Karate guys in Korea / wrestlers / Hapkido / several teachers of Chinese arts from China / Aunkai / JKD / students / others). Some of my old Aikido students (from when I lived here before) have moved on tremendously and all offer good insight. Also spent a couple of weeks discussing stuff with a Jujutsu friend in NZ and so ... I have spent a bit of time updating stuff/ideas on my website. Nothing much - just bits here and there. Most people would not notice I guess. Sometimes I think I should delete stuff because I have moved on but I usually leave it as it might provide a way for others who are starting out. Anyway - Update 2016 done.

Rupert Atkinson
10-02-2016, 02:37 AM
I have had a bit of time on my hands of late so have updated a few more areas on my book website. Again, nothing major ... just updating this and that and correcting the odd typo. I am back in NZ for now.

iron horse
05-19-2017, 09:32 PM
Just visited my good friend Rupert again. Chatted about and exchanged lots of training ideas. Rupert is an endless source of info.

Rupert Atkinson
11-28-2017, 03:53 AM
I just found a link to some old videos of me and a couple of friends from Korea - year 2000. I was looking for my old Jo-trick video but found this instead. A bit of Aikido, Jujutsu, Kyushin, and Takeda-ryu - pretty random. The vids are a bit short and jerky - they were made with the one of the first digital cameras - not a lot of memory so kept it short etc.


11-29-2017, 12:13 PM
Have you considered converting this to ebook/kindle and making it available on Amazon (and other places)? This could be done very easily. I have worked in publishing many years and have experience with this. Contact me if interested.

Rupert Atkinson
11-29-2017, 07:41 PM
Have you considered converting this to ebook/kindle and making it available on Amazon (and other places)? This could be done very easily. I have worked in publishing many years and have experience with this. Contact me if interested.

I have thought about it - but just too busy with too many things going on.

PM sent :-)

Rupert Atkinson
11-29-2017, 07:46 PM
Links to more video of me 1993 or 94 -- converted to digital from video tape.

Facebook1: http://www.facebook.com/EmptyJacket/videos/10154750536642539/?multi_permalinks=759074804212526&notif_id=1511982950706415&notif_t=like

Facebook2: http://www.facebook.com/EmptyJacket/videos/10154750518502539/?multi_permalinks=759074804212526&notif_id=1511982950706415&notif_t=like

Rupert Atkinson
01-04-2019, 12:54 PM
2018 - A bit of a disaster year for me.
2019 - I will add some updates to this online book and shall try to visit Japan again this year.

Looking and moving forward ...

Rupert Atkinson
04-02-2020, 04:31 AM
April 2020. Most dojos around the world are closed at the moment. As for myself, I have various exercise/training routines that I do by myself. Try doing your Aikido by yourself - there is a lot that can be done - you might be pleasantly surprised. Other than that, why not try some light Aikido reading and try - Discovering Aikido from a more intellectual perspective?

Rupert Atkinson
12-26-2020, 04:08 PM
2020 is soon to end. Since CoronaV sent millions of people home earlier this year, my site visitor stats have doubled. So, over the last nine months my www.discovering-aikido.com (http://www.discovering-aikido.com) site has equaled the number of views since I first established it in 2005. Looks like a lot of people had a lot of free time on their hands! It has now tailed off, so, hopefully, people around the world must be going back to work. Luckily, here in NZ, after an initial lockdown of a few weeks, we got back to normal pretty quickly. After a few months of weapons only, normal training resumed maybe three or more months ago. Over the last while I have been through my site content. I have corrected a few typos, and added bits here and there. Thanks to everyone who has been reading through it! Shall consider republishing it in paper copy at some point. :ai: :ki: :do: