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Doshu
06-28-2002, 11:29 AM
If anyone has ever read the great book by Sensei Steves the "Invincible Warrior". They would relise that Daito Ryu was not the only martial art that effected the refined art of Aikido we know and love. After reading texts on Hsing-i, Pa Gua and even Kung Fu (the Northern styles) you can see that there internal abilitys have greatly effected Aikido. Along with the very circular motions of Aikido.

O'Sensei went to China on 2 major occations once as a solider and also as a body guard. During this time he pitted himself against many chinese martial artists. There are no records of these duals. However, Morihei never lost a fight. In my humbul opinion, he would told his students if he had lost. So lets run on the assumption that he won these fights. Not that it really matters weither he did or not.

I would like to know anyones thoughts on the effects of his trips to China and the great Chinese Martial arts on Aikido.

Jakusotsu
06-28-2002, 12:25 PM
While I've not read the entire book, I've read the sections in question.

The information isn't substantiated at all. In all the records I've read, written by his students and son, Ueshiba never gave any mention of study in Chinese martial arts. This leads me to believe that he did not study Chinese martial arts. In most other regards, Ueshiba seemed happy to give credit to his teachers where credit was due.

There are similarities between Chinese martial arts and Aikido. This isn't any more signficant than the similarities between Graeco-Roman wrestling and Judo.

paw
06-28-2002, 01:11 PM
Tetsutaka Sugawara has a series of books on this very topic. "Aikido and Chinese Martial Arts". I believe two volumes have been released and three are planned (someone please correct me if I'm wrong).

To the best of my knowledge, Sugawara Sensei travels once a year to the United States to teach. If you are interested, I can see when and where he will be in the US. (Any Katori Shinto Ryu folks lurking with better information?)

Regards,

Paul

SeiserL
06-28-2002, 04:16 PM
I can only hazzard a guess, but IMHO, O'Sensei was proably influenced by everything he saw. Most great martial artist are.

What is interesting to me is that on some level, even without knowing it, most martial arts have a base of agreement. There are probably only so many ways to hit only so many targets and only so many ways to unbalance a person. There are bound to be a great number of similiarities/agreements.

Until again,

Lynn

Doshu
06-28-2002, 04:30 PM
I can only agree with what you say. I think that he was influenced with everything he saw. In my opinion, the Chinese internal arts had a impact on Aikido. But it cant be said that anything else other than Daito Ryu had the bestest effect.

Cheers

Chris

PhiGammaDawg
06-28-2002, 06:24 PM
:cool:

Ueshiba Sensei was indeed influenced by Chinese martial arts...arts like T'ai Chi which incorporates soft circular motions are somewhat analogous to Aiki...-ju-jitsu or -DO

Chris Li
06-28-2002, 07:04 PM
Originally posted by PhiGammaDawg
:cool:

Ueshiba Sensei was indeed influenced by Chinese martial arts...arts like T'ai Chi which incorporates soft circular motions are somewhat analogous to Aiki...-ju-jitsu or -DO

According to who? These rumors float up every once and a while, but I've never seen a basis in fact. According to K. Ueshiba (who ought to know) his father had no interest at all in Chinese martial arts. He did spend some time in occupied Manchuria, but he did so at an exclusively Japanese institution. Further, if you're familiar with that time period in Japan you know that Chinese arts were virtually unknown here.

People's bodies all mover in the same ways. I'm not surprised to see similar approaches in different (and unrelated) arts, but that doesn't necessarily mean that there's a connection.

Best,

Chris

PeterR
06-28-2002, 09:54 PM
Hi Paul;

I've read the books and I found the historical sections very interesting. I must say he took very few facts and ran with them. He could be right, the idea that Japan is a mix of two migrating groups really caught my imagination. That said I would be very careful to quote his supposition as fact.

Originally posted by paw
Tetsutaka Sugawara has a series of books on this very topic. "Aikido and Chinese Martial Arts". I believe two volumes have been released and three are planned (someone please correct me if I'm wrong).

To the best of my knowledge, Sugawara Sensei travels once a year to the United States to teach. If you are interested, I can see when and where he will be in the US. (Any Katori Shinto Ryu folks lurking with better information?)

daedalus
06-29-2002, 02:15 AM
In the book "The Internal Power of Martial Arts" by B. K. Frantzis, the author had trained in both Aikido and Chinese martial arts, and theorized that Ba Gua (Pa Kua) and Aikido are so much alike that O Sensei must have been influenced by if not trained in bagua. I, having not trained in Ba Gua, will humbley admit that I have no idea, but I wouldn't rule out the possibility.

As far as O Sensei only having Japanese teachers, I find it hard to believe that a man as intelligent and hungry for knowledge in a different country with different martial arts wouldn't see whats out there. I wouldn't find it hard to believe that he wouldn't admit to taking instruction from a non-Japanese. Remember, O Sensei was talented, but a god he was not. In his privately circulated text "Budo" (published in 1938), he wrote "This manual is not to be shown to non-Japanese." Now, if you combine his xenophobia with a thirst for martial knowledge, the possibility of him getting instruction and just not mentioning it becomes a viable possibility. Unfortunately, I doubt any of us will know for sure.

Chris Li
06-29-2002, 02:27 AM
Originally posted by daedalus
I wouldn't find it hard to believe that he wouldn't admit to taking instruction from a non-Japanese.

Possibly, although I think his son would have known about it if it had happened. More importantly, there is very little of a technical nature in Aikido that does not also exist in Daito-ryu, and I'm pretty sure that S. Takeda didn't make too many trips to China.

There's another discussion of this topic somewhere on the Aikido Journal site - basically, it seemed to conclude that there's no real hard evidence for a Chinese connection, and a lot against it.

Best,

Chris

Peter Goldsbury
06-29-2002, 03:17 AM
Originally posted by paw
Tetsutaka Sugawara has a series of books on this very topic. "Aikido and Chinese Martial Arts". I believe two volumes have been released and three are planned (someone please correct me if I'm wrong).

To the best of my knowledge, Sugawara Sensei travels once a year to the United States to teach. If you are interested, I can see when and where he will be in the US. (Any Katori Shinto Ryu folks lurking with better information?)

Regards,

Paul

Paul,

I have the two volumes you mention (the third has not been published yet). My own reaction is pretty much the same as P Rehse's. Very little factual evidence; much comparison and much speculation.

In some sense the problem is similar to that of comparing Shinto and Taoism. It is pretty clear that much of Japanese civilisation came from China, directly or by way of Korea. So if one were able to trace Japanese martial arts to their very beginning (with adequate archeological evidence etc), it is probable that China would figure pretty prominently.

Sugawara discusses Japanese culture and its interplay with China's and then discusses aikido and some Chinese arts. But we do not have any discussion of, say, the possible Chinese antecedents of, e.g., the training technique called 1-kajo / 1-kyou, for example, which is a fundamental waza in aikido and which came from Daito-ryu. It is possible that there are such antecedents, but this is a separate question from the question whether Ueshiba saw or practised Chinese martial arts on his trips to Mongolia / Manchuria. Aikido and Chinese Ba Gua might be similar, but it requires extra evidence to show that this is not a coincidence.

Best regards,

Bruce Baker
06-29-2002, 01:10 PM
I don't doubt that O'Sensei had a very Japanese view of how things should be and how martial arts should work.

As far a learning things on his journey, he is very specific about being a disguises traveler who tried not to draw attention to himself, which would leave no time for training in martial arts.

The fact that he learned many things from other teachers is well documented, and adapting them in the forum of Japanese arts appear to be his only concern when face with other fighting arts that could possibly overcome his fighting skills.

It is a great probability that his urging his students train, study, and practice diligently were his words of warning about the tricks or deceptions they might face with other fighting arts.

No ... I don't believe he consciously or physically trained with any masters of martial arts while traveling, even if he did observe other styles. It would have been a footnote to close any gaps in his own techniques and skills, that is the extent of conclusions I must draw from all the different materials I have read on O'Sensei's trips abroad.

We, as modern students, do pursue simularities of other asian arts to the genesis of this art we call Aikido, which is like tracing the history of warfare over the last three thousand years in a forum of transistion because of needs.

Our present study, may indeed, cause new additions to our Aikido, but as far as O'Sensei, I believe he stayed strickly in the Japanese section of martial arts.

Mona
06-29-2002, 05:12 PM
Aikido is very Taoist-oriented, especially when it comes to the principle of non-resistance.

Abasan
06-29-2002, 11:07 PM
Maybe taoist orientated but I don't think its taoist derived. Similarly, it might be reasonable to say that Japanese martial arts derived its ancestry from Chinese martial arts, in particular through the same route as had the Chinese martial arts derived its ancestry from India; the shaolin monks.

Kung Fu as you know it, was taught to the chinese monks by an indian monk so as to facilitate their rigorous training and meditation.

As it is speculated that Japan was made up of the chinese imigrants and okinawan indegineous people, it maybe safe to presume that some culture, religion and of course knowledge like martial arts would transfer over.

Karate originated from ToDe (china hand). In Karate are many locks and throws similar to aikido's lock and throws. For a more complete comparison, try looking for shorinju Kempo. This is basically a japanese version of kung fu and is only practiced by buddhist monks in Japan. (well, not only monks... but its supposed to be that way). I guess, the moves have always been there. Aikido may have incorporated those similar looking moves, but I would guess the principle of applying it was unique to OSensei's understanding of it. Therefore although Karate, Kung Fu and Aikido may share kotegaishe, ikkyo and so on, the way its applied are entirely unique to its art. As I said earlier, orientated (or influenced) but not derived.

Anyway... I hope I don't offend anyone with this opinion of mine, if there's any mistake let me know.

Misogi-no-Gyo
06-30-2002, 01:15 AM
I will have to double check, but in my conversations with Seiseki Abe Shihan, I recall him mentioning this subject to me. I cannot say for sure if he said that O-Sensei himself had trained while in China. However, he did, and I mean definitely said that O-Sensei told Abe Sensei to go to China and study certain martial art related things there. Abe Sensei did in fact do this, and there are some remarkable stories he then related about his experiences there. I won't repeat them here, but I will commit to asking Abe Sensei about any specific details of O-Sensei's experiences that O-Sensei may have shared with him, when I next have the chance. I will report anything I may discover.

The only thing I would like to add is that I am sure that there are many things that O-Sensei may have shared with people that he did not share with his son. My father doesn’t share plenty of things with me. I relate plenty of things about specific aikido students of mine to my friends that I never share with anyone in the dojo. I think it behooves us to remember that the master-student relationship that was in effect between O-Sensei and 99.9% of those around him inherently dictated what could and could not be shared.

Chris Li
06-30-2002, 02:01 AM
Originally posted by Abasan
Maybe taoist orientated but I don't think its taoist derived. Similarly, it might be reasonable to say that Japanese martial arts derived its ancestry from Chinese martial arts, in particular through the same route as had the Chinese martial arts derived its ancestry from India; the shaolin monks.

A general influence? Maybe. A specific transmission (which is what is usually alleged with M. Ueshiba)? IMO, probably not. You have to remember that most Japanese empty hand arts are believed to have begun as offshoots off sumo, which has a very long history, and is believed to have been more or less native to Japan.


As it is speculated that Japan was made up of the chinese imigrants and okinawan indegineous people, it maybe safe to presume that some culture, religion and of course knowledge like martial arts would transfer over.

Of course, there is always cutural transfer. OTOH, you don't hear too many people trying to argue that the English long sword is a derivation of Roman military technique - even thought you'd have a much stronger argument there. Why the obsession with derivation for Asian martial arts?


Karate originated from ToDe (china hand). In Karate are many locks and throws similar to aikido's lock and throws. For a more complete comparison, try looking for shorinju Kempo. This is basically a japanese version of kung fu and is only practiced by buddhist monks in Japan. (well, not only monks... but its supposed to be that way).

Shorinji Kempo is a modern martial art - newer than Aikido, even (around 1947). It includes locks and throws similar to Aikido because those techniques go back to the same roots as Aikido - Daito-ryu. The founder of Shorinji Kempo trained in Hakko-ryu, which is an offshoot of Daito-ryu - no need for obscure Chinese influences there :) .

Best,

Chris

Tim Griffiths
06-30-2002, 06:27 AM
Originally posted by Chris Li

Shorinji Kempo is a modern martial art - newer than Aikido, even (around 1947). It includes locks and throws similar to Aikido because those techniques go back to the same roots as Aikido - Daito-ryu. The founder of Shorinji Kempo trained in Hakko-ryu, which is an offshoot of Daito-ryu - no need for obscure Chinese influences there :) .

Best,

Chris

Do you have a reference for that, Chris? A troll though the main
Shorinji sites out there doesn't bring up any mention of Hakko- or Daito-ryu. i.e. http://village.infoweb.ne.jp/~fwip4150/Kempo/

General comment:

The thing I use to do to my younger brother (sorry Nick) I would now call shihonage. Does this mean I'm remembering Daito-ryu or aikido from a past life? Or that basically there are only so many ways to twist an arm?

Train well,

Tim

Chris Li
06-30-2002, 07:47 AM
Originally posted by Tim Griffiths


Do you have a reference for that, Chris? A troll though the main
Shorinji sites out there doesn't bring up any mention of Hakko- or Daito-ryu. i.e. http://village.infoweb.ne.jp/~fwip4150/Kempo/

Try the interview with Hakko-ryu soke Ryuho Okuyama at:
http://www.aikidojournal.com/articles/_article.asp?ArticleID=532


General comment:

The thing I use to do to my younger brother (sorry Nick) I would now call shihonage. Does this mean I'm remembering Daito-ryu or aikido from a past life? Or that basically there are only so many ways to twist an arm?

Past life, definitely :) .

Best,

Chris

Tim Griffiths
06-30-2002, 08:12 AM
Originally posted by Chris Li


Try the interview with Hakko-ryu soke Ryuho Okuyama at:
http://www.aikidojournal.com/articles/_article.asp?ArticleID=532

Best,

Chris

Thanks - interesting reading. Looks like you're right - no big mystery.

From that article:

My father taught him only the first or second technique. He complained of a lot of pain and so he learned the rest of the techniques by correspondence. Then he later combined our techniques with Nihon Kenpo and created Shorinji Kenpo.

Err...what? This seems to suggest that the founder of Shorinji kempo couldn't take a nikkyo...

*mumble* *mutter* always thought *mumble* karate styles *mutter* *mutter* effette dilletants *mumble* *mumble* :p

Train well,

Tim

Abasan
07-01-2002, 10:50 AM
Chris,

I suppose Doshin Nakano as mentioned in that article you've hyperlinked is the same as Doshin So who claims to be the true successor of Shorinji Kempo...

Anyway, he does not give mention at all to Hakko-Ryu in his book, but then I'm no academician. My knowledge lies primarily on secondary and tertiary research. Still an excerpt from his book goes like this -

"The shaolin-ssu (shorinji in japanese) temple, located in Honan Prefecture in China, was the site where Bodhidharma, a sixth-century Buddhist patriach, introduced Shorinji Kempo to a group of buddhist priests who for many ages practiced it in conjunction with Zen meditation as a spiritual discipline and a way to defend themselves and encourage the development of benevolence. It was never taught to any except those who were definitely going to enter priesthood, and as a result, Shorinji kempo embodies much of the characteristic oriental idea of calm and harmony. blah blah blah..."

I did ask my sensei about it once, and he told me that its basically shaolin kung fu, pronounced shorinji in the japanese fashion. From what I've seen, its probably a watered down version of shaolin kung fu. (It doesn't look like jujitsu to me, at least not the way they practice here in Malaysia).

Whatever the case may be, I didn't intend for my post to elaborate much on Shorinji. I just used it as an example of a martial art that derived its ancestry from China.

And as someone has clearly mentioned earlier, there's only so many ways to throw/hit/kick/lock someone. Just like music has only so many notes... its the way its arranged, the tempo and the accompaniment that makes it into a particular kind of music.

I think my post was just to give an opinion that I disagree with aikido being taoist derived. Mayhaps influenced but not derived.

Chris Li
07-01-2002, 04:36 PM
Originally posted by Abasan
Chris,

I suppose Doshin Nakano as mentioned in that article you've hyperlinked is the same as Doshin So who claims to be the true successor of Shorinji Kempo...

Yes.


I did ask my sensei about it once, and he told me that its basically shaolin kung fu, pronounced shorinji in the japanese fashion. From what I've seen, its probably a watered down version of shaolin kung fu. (It doesn't look like jujitsu to me, at least not the way they practice here in Malaysia).

He claimed to have based it upon arts studied during his travels in China. Some people disagree - Don Draeger, for example, gives a pretty good argument why he thought that the techniques were mainly derived from Japanese (Okinawan) Karate. "Shorinji" is the Japanese reading of the characters for "shaolin".

Best,

Chris

L. Camejo
07-01-2002, 06:03 PM
Hi all,

I don't know what the big discussion is about. Everyone knows O-sensei went up to Wudang mountain and learned all the secret techniques of chuan fa.

It's just that he never taught the cool flying tricks to any of his uchideshi.

:D

Just thought I'd liven things up a bit :confused:

P.S.-Confucius say-Watching Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and then posting on Aikiweb is not a very wise move.

:D

RFB3
07-04-2002, 05:34 PM
I think it is pretty settled that it is not now or will ever be settled that O'Sensai took anything away from China. Why would the Chinese even teach anything to him when the kept everything very secret among themselfs.:D

L. Camejo
07-13-2002, 01:09 PM
Hi all,

Check out
http://www.energyarts.com/lores/library/masters/ueshiba.html

Then check out

http://www.shenwu.com/bg4tchnq.htm Koshi nage or sukui nage????

Then there is Donn Dreager's book on Budo and Bujutsu (Vol.2 I think) that speaks about Oshikiuchi, the forerunner of Daito Ryu Aikjujutsu and it's philosophy of Aiki in-yo ho (Harmony of energy based on yin/yang) which came directly from Chinese Taoism.

All together, these things make the argument interesting for a Chinese link to O-Sensei and his aikido.

Hmmmmmmmmm :)

L.C.:ai::ki:

Chris Li
07-13-2002, 05:04 PM
Hi all,

Check out
http://www.energyarts.com/lores/library/masters/ueshiba.html

Nice argument, but I don't buy it. There is very little of a technical nature in Aikido that isn't also present in Daito-ryu, including all the things that he mentioned. I'm still fairly sure that Sokaku Takeda didn't spend much time in China.


Then check out

http://www.shenwu.com/bg4tchnq.htm Koshi nage or sukui nage????


Koshi nage is even more common in Judo - did Jigoro Kano spend time in China studying Ba Gua too?


Then there is Donn Dreager's book on Budo and Bujutsu (Vol.2 I think) that speaks about Oshikiuchi, the forerunner of Daito Ryu Aikjujutsu and it's philosophy of Aiki in-yo ho (Harmony of energy based on yin/yang) which came directly from Chinese Taoism.

There's really no agreement on what Oshikiuchi actually was, and there seems to be some strength to the argument that it was a system of formal etiquette. In any case "in-yo" is a common concept in Japan. Yes, it has its roots in China, as do Kanji and many other things Japanese. That doesn't mean that M. Ueshiba studied Ba Gua.

Best,

Chris

aikidofan
08-17-2004, 01:26 PM
I understand some people like Bruce Frantzis say that Ueshiba learnt some ba gua zhang during the war. Indeed Ueshiba was a professor of martial arts at Kenkoku university in Manchuria for a few years so he must have had exposure to them. Then again some people say that Daito Ryu can be very soft and men like Horikawa were just like Ueshiba so he was not unique in Japan.

I was wondering whether people here think that Ueshiba might have learnt some internal material from the chinese. Certainly his approach is markedly different pre and post WWII and so this is one possible explanation amongst others.

What exactly are these similarities then and how do people think Ueshiba's aikido differs from the chinese internal martial arts

BC
08-17-2004, 01:35 PM
From what I have read, it is highly unlikely that O Sensei learned any CMA. One reason is that relations between the Japanese and Chinese peoples during that time were not good. Also, a great deal of his time in Manchuria was spent hiding and running away from aggressive locals.

An explanation about similarities between Japanese and Chinese (or other countries') martial arts is that the human body will only move in certain ways. As such, there are bound to be similarities.

AsimHanif
08-17-2004, 01:41 PM
I have always thought of aikido as A (not THE) practical application of tai chi. I have made it a point to supplement my aikido training with the Yang Family form. I also thought it was interesting that Tamura Sensei, who spent a great deal of time with O'Sensei, demonstrated tai chi (chi gung) as a warm up during camp.
I think there may be something to the idea that O'Sensei used the principles if not a specific form of Chinese internal arts.
Whether it's tai chi, yoga, or ba gua, having an internal practice is very important in gaining a higher understanding of aikido.

akiy
08-17-2004, 01:46 PM
More previous discussion on this subject iin a "similar thread" (as listed below) here:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2098

-- Jun

paw
08-17-2004, 02:11 PM
I was wondering whether people here think that Ueshiba might have learnt some internal material from the chinese. Certainly his approach is markedly different pre and post WWII and so this is one possible explanation amongst others.

Tetsutaka Sugawara Sensei has a multi-volume work on the connection between aikido and CMA.

Regards,

Paul

Ron Tisdale
08-17-2004, 02:12 PM
This is one of those topics that comes up continually, in spite of the fact that there is no substantiation whatsoever that I have ever seen. AikdoJournal also has threads on it.

Ron

Charles Hill
08-17-2004, 04:24 PM
Abe Sensei said in an interview that M.U. did learn chinese arts when he was there. I considered the whole idea a lot of poo until I read that. I believe that it is at Matuoka Sensei's web site

Charles.

Misogi-no-Gyo
08-17-2004, 07:56 PM
Abe Sensei said in an interview that M.U. did learn chinese arts when he was there. I considered the whole idea a lot of poo until I read that. I believe that it is at Matsuoka Sensei's web site

Charles.


Abe Sensei says many things that which unfortunately few people choose to listen. Much like O-Sensei, in that regard, I guess. In the case to which you are referring, he made the following comments to Stanley Pranin, of Aikido Journal. Interestingly enough, this was only released in the Japanese version of Aiki-News, so wasn't readily available to the masses until the (unfortunately rather unpolished) translation appeared on Matsuoka Sensei's Aikido Doshinokai Dojo website. (http://www.doshinokai.com/aikido_articles.htm)






Abe: When Mr. Deguchi went to Mongolia (year of 1924), he took close aides along with him. He asked O-Sensei to go with him. It looked as if he was taken as a guard. But, in fact, O-Sensei just wanted to study about continental martial arts furthermore after he went through all martial art schools in Japan.

He went there as a warrior. He wanted to study continental martial art, what is now called Tai Chi, from Mongolia and after that, he tried to enhance Aikido more.



--- Do you mean that the trip to Mongolia gave great influence to O-Sensei?



Abe: Yes, it was for martial arts. I think he had foresight. O-Sensei thoroughly studied Tai Chi. There were many Tai Chi schools, and he had chances to see something great in Mongolia.

I followed same path (Laughter). The era was different, though. I have visited Beijing two times. The first time was for studying about Calligraphy. I mainly organized the second trip. Although I wanted to know about martial arts and Tai Chi, everyone else went there for Calligraphy.

When I went there, I said, "I do Calligraphy besides Aikido." and demonstrated Aikido. One of the audiences said to me, "I have studied Tai Chi from my father since I was 2 or 3 years old. As I was very touched your technique, I would like you to see my Tai Chi, please." And he showed it to me. It was completely different from Tai Chi people do at the streets. This was a special technique. It is as same as special technique of Aikido.

I visited with Abe Sensei shortly after this and an earlier article were published. We had previously discussed the ramifications of this and other strongly held misconceptions that continue to be fed to the aikido public by individuals who not only claim some level of "authority" on the subject, but whose same misunderstandings, inaccuracies, opinions or, um lies many unfortunate people take as sermons by disciples elucidating a learned version of the New O-Sensei Gospel, abridged version…. As always, he merely laughed, and made a joke about how back in the day most didn't make the effort to understand what O-Sensei had spent a lifetime pursuing, so it is not surprising to him that people today didn't understand when he himself, repeated it. "No one wanted to listen to the old man babble!" Rather, "Everyone wanted to do Kao-Tsuki Suwari Iriminage ura waza, instead. No matter how much things seem to change they really often stay the same.

Abe Sensei noted that O-Sensei laid out a very clear path through the end of the 60's and he and several other somewhat reclusive individuals have been doing the same thing ever since. He commented specifically about the path that has been artificially narrowed, so much so that in most cases, it precludes much of the core of what O-Sensei demonstrated Aikido to be, and leaves so much of something, well… else. He went on to say quite a bit on quite a few things. Oh, if the flies on the wall had written it all down. How much revenue might no longer finds its way into certain well oiled, machine-like coffers? Empires crumble, peddles head backwards… If you want all the gory details, you'll just have to buy the book! Someday, but not today.

PeterR
08-17-2004, 08:08 PM
Indeed Ueshiba was a professor of martial arts at Kenkoku university in Manchuria for a few years so he must have had exposure to them.
Ueshiba M. visited Tomiki K.for a short time while the latter was teaching martial arts at Kenkuko university.

Chris Li
08-17-2004, 08:21 PM
Abe Sensei says many things that which unfortunately few people choose to listen. Much like O-Sensei, in that regard, I guess. In the case to which you are referring, he made the following comments to Stanley Pranin, of Aikido Journal. Interestingly enough, this was only released in the Japanese version of Aiki-News, so wasn't readily available to the masses until the (unfortunately rather unpolished) translation appeared on Matsuoka Sensei's Aikido Doshinokai Dojo website. (http://www.doshinokai.com/aikido_articles.htm)

I'd note that Abe didn't meet Ueshiba until 1952, so the events he's referring to are one's that he's heard of or been told about, not ones that he experienced first-hand. People who were there at the time have had different things to say.

In any case, this issue has been covered in some detail in other threads, and Ron's right - there's been no substantive evidence revealed for a Chinese influence. There have also been a number of fairly convincing arguments for the other side, and negative testaments from such figures as Morihiro Saito and Kisshomaru Ueshiba.

Best,

Chris

PeterR
08-17-2004, 08:41 PM
Kenji Tomiki joined Ueshiba M. about 2 years after the Mongolian fiasco and was Ueshiba M.'s host during his trips to Manchuko. From this end I have not heard of Ueshiba M. studying Chinese MA although I am sure that he had an interest and did see some demonstrations especially in the 1940s.

Statements like O-Sensei thoroughly studied Tai Chi and after he went through all martial art schools in Japan (translation inaccuracies aside) are matters of interpretation.

I tend to be very careful using terms like lies.

BC
08-23-2004, 12:58 PM
To state that someone ""thoroughly studied tia chi chuan" implies at least several years of study, since tai chi chuan is as or possibly more complex and difficult to gain proficiency in than aikido. I know this because I studied tai chi chuan for over twelve years before I took up aikido. However, YMMV.

JessePasley
08-26-2004, 09:35 AM
I'm not all too knowledgeable about the history surrounding this debate, but I do have a somewhat funny aside that is related:

During my last trip to China for gongfu training, my teacher asked me to demonstrate some aikido techniques. After doing a few I could muster up under pressure, he gave a reply that I had heard before in China: "Ah yes! That is Baquazhang! Nice job Jesse!" Similarly, everyday when practicing basic techniques, my coaches would crack jokes about my "baquazhang." Of course, they stopped cracking jokes after I had snapped one of them down with ushiro-ate (and a lot of luck) during free wrestling. So, instead of telling people in China that I practice heqidao (aikido in Chinese), which usually instigates some discussion on Sino-Japanese relations, I have given up and will from now on just tell them that I practice baquazhang. Meh.

PeterR
08-26-2004, 07:46 PM
Of course, they stopped cracking jokes after I had snapped one of them down with ushiro-ate
That makes me all tingly just thinking about it. Great technique what?

Mark Balogh
09-01-2004, 04:45 AM
Hi everyone,

In the other thread (2098) Christopher Li says this...

Nice argument, but I don't buy it. There is very little of a technical nature in Aikido that isn't also present in Daito-ryu, including all the things that he mentioned. I'm still fairly sure that Sokaku Takeda didn't spend much time in China.

I'd like to say that I have done very little Bagua, but I have done some at least. I have also studied a reasonable amount of Daito Ryu. From what I can tell, all movement in Daito Ryu was originally COMPLETELY linear and Okabayashi Shogen is a massive advocator of this. The dragon walking in Bagua has what I could describe as "little tenkan's" in. Whatever arguement there is about history, IMHO it is clear that Bagua has at least had a significant influence on Aikido footwork.

O'sensei also has done things in demonstrations that I have not seen other japanese martial artists do, at least not the same way. Their is a common technique in Yoshinkan Aikido where the uke runs in and makes contact with tori's shoulders from the front. Gozo Shioda can be seen in many demo's projecting the person away very impressively!!! However, when I have seen O'sensei do this, it looks very different, softer in a way. My friend showed his Chi Gung teacher the video of O'sensei and he said that it was a common Chi Gung method of using your breath and body like a balloon.

I think in the case of O'sensei and the influence of Chinese Martial Arts upon Aikido, I feel that there is never this much smoke without any fire. :)

Chris Li
09-01-2004, 11:44 AM
I'd like to say that I have done very little Bagua, but I have done some at least. I have also studied a reasonable amount of Daito Ryu. From what I can tell, all movement in Daito Ryu was originally COMPLETELY linear and Okabayashi Shogen is a massive advocator of this. The dragon walking in Bagua has what I could describe as "little tenkan's" in. Whatever arguement there is about history, IMHO it is clear that Bagua has at least had a significant influence on Aikido footwork.

Somewhere there's a post by Ellis Amdur explaining why, despite some surface similarities, it is not clear at all. In any case, I think that it's hard to make an firm conclusion based on the "looks like" line or reasoning.

Circle's are generally, but not always, smaller in Daito-ryu - but it's not uncommon to see circular movement indistinguishable from Aikido even in the "orthodox" Daito-ryu schools.

O'sensei also has done things in demonstrations that I have not seen other japanese martial artists do, at least not the same way. Their is a common technique in Yoshinkan Aikido where the uke runs in and makes contact with tori's shoulders from the front. Gozo Shioda can be seen in many demo's projecting the person away very impressively!!! However, when I have seen O'sensei do this, it looks very different, softer in a way. My friend showed his Chi Gung teacher the video of O'sensei and he said that it was a common Chi Gung method of using your breath and body like a balloon.

The "looks like" argument again. Does it matter that they do this technique in Daito-ryu as well?

Best,

Chris

Ron Tisdale
09-01-2004, 12:43 PM
The "looks like" argument again. Does it matter that they do this technique in Daito-ryu as well?

Unfortunately, probably not. Sloppy thinking leads to sloppy results. No offense, yada yada yada...

Ron

Mark Balogh
09-02-2004, 04:08 AM
I enjoyed reading your reply Christopher, you obviously have something to bring to the table. From what I understand, circular footwork came into Daito Ryu AFTER Sokaku Takeda. His son did not practice circular footwork either. Is it possible that Ueshiba brought this into Daito Ryu? :confused:

Somewhere there's a post by Ellis Amdur explaining why, despite some surface similarities, it is not clear at all.

Can anyone please find a link to this article, I would be interested in reading it. Thanks. :)

ChristianBoddum
09-02-2004, 08:37 AM
Hi !

The other day training with a fellow doka ,he told me that at seminar during break he was doing
some Tai Chi form , it must have been a couple of years ago ,Nishio sensei and his danish translater
came into the hall,and Nishio sensei lit up by seing that ,the translater told him that Nishio sensei
had accompanied O´sensei on travels in China and O´sensei had been very enthusiastic about Tai Chi. Since Nishio sensei started his Aikido training in 1952 ,this probably happened some years later.

Unfortunately that is all I can add.

yours - Chr:B.

L. Camejo
09-02-2004, 10:15 AM
Interesting concepts.

This reminds me of something Bruce Lee said in an interview regarding all human beings having 2 arms and 2 legs, so movements will be similar regardless of what martial art one is doing as long as they are trying to achieve a similar objective from a particular principle of movement. I tihnk this sort of helped his idea of having no structure as structure.

In studying a bit of Taiji Qin Na I have found some very similar movements to Aikido's kansetsu waza (joint technique) mainly. Of course my Taiji instructor said the Aikido movements I was doing were the same as Taijiquan and he also indicated that there was some historical link between the Chinese arts and Aikido. The same thing happened when I studied Qi Gong under a Chinese master. When I showed him some of my Aikido he said, Aikido is Qi Gong.

On the reverse side I have attended a Shaolin Qin Na workshop and at one point the guy proceeded to show a variation of Rear Naked Stranglehold Tenkai Kotehineri (Sankyo) with an atemi to the groin and called it an "Aikido" technique. Again, this was an attempt to show the "common foundations" of the different arts.

On another note, the Judo principles used for kuzushi and many of the throws are the same for many Aikido technique, except that the distance used is different.

Personally, I have gone from believing there is a historical Chinese link between all of these arts (even going wayyy back to the study of Aiki In Yo Ho by the Aizu monks and its roots in Taoism and Tai Chi), to seeing it as common principles expressed via a common medium of expression. If the human body is supposed to apply circles and straight lines to achieve certain tactical advantages in unarmed combat, then because of the similarities in the concepts/principles used and the general sameness of the medium involved (i.e. the human body in a vertical plane), there will be overlap.

But this is because of the limitations of the human body and the similarity in principles. Its sort of why a bubble is spherical in shape and so is a planet. The same laws of physics (generally) apply to both things, with the spherical shape being the most efficient form to be used to achieve a similar purpose. Martial arts are also based on the principles of efficiency in achieveing certain tactical objectives in combat.

Its the same way we see similarities in Graeco-Roman wrestling, Judo, BJJ and other forms of floor grappling. Similar principles, same medium of expression.

Just my thoughts on the thing.
LC:ai::ki:

Mark Balogh
09-02-2004, 10:30 AM
This is turning out to be a very constructive thread! :)

The question that this really leads me to is, are there training methods or skills within chinese internal arts that could help develop our Aikido? Something similar to Tohei believing that Ki training was required? Having seen the abilities of some of these Chinese martial artists I would say yes, although I think if they saw Tada Sensei even their jaws would drop!!!!!!!!!! :D

AsimHanif
09-02-2004, 11:11 AM
Having done both Ki Aikido and Tai Chi, I came to believe that the desired results were the same- unification of the mind and body. I found the moving meditation of Tai Chi more to my liking but the principles of moving from your center, staying relaxed, dropping your breath (weight underside), and flowing (ki is extended) were the same.
I think you can also achieve this from pure yoga, pilates, chi gung, or meditation.

Chris Li
09-02-2004, 02:59 PM
Hi !

The other day training with a fellow doka ,he told me that at seminar during break he was doing
some Tai Chi form , it must have been a couple of years ago ,Nishio sensei and his danish translater
came into the hall,and Nishio sensei lit up by seing that ,the translater told him that Nishio sensei
had accompanied O´sensei on travels in China and O´sensei had been very enthusiastic about Tai Chi. Since Nishio sensei started his Aikido training in 1952 ,this probably happened some years later.

Unfortunately that is all I can add.

yours - Chr:B.

Quite likely a mistake by the translator - AFAIK, Morihei Ueshiba made no trips to China after the war.

Best,

Chris

Chris Li
09-02-2004, 03:03 PM
I enjoyed reading your reply Christopher, you obviously have something to bring to the table. From what I understand, circular footwork came into Daito Ryu AFTER Sokaku Takeda. His son did not practice circular footwork either. Is it possible that Ueshiba brought this into Daito Ryu? :confused:

For a number of reasons, I think that is highly unlikely.


Can anyone please find a link to this article, I would be interested in reading it. Thanks. :)


Here's a reposting from the Aikido Journal thread:

To return to the original subject, I think K. Frantzis' assertion is extremely dubious for a number of reasons.

1. Bagua is perhaps the most dificult Chinese martial art to learn, particularly in terms of application. The circular walking, with the particular "wringing" tension through the spine takes many thousands of hours to master - and quite a bit of meticulous instruction and correction. Despite what Mr. Frantzis states, (and notwithstanding his own skill in Bagua), I think the similarities are only superficial - yes, Bagua and aikido have some throws and locks that are similar, but Ueshiba shows none of the very specific qualities of movement that well-trained practitioners of Bagua display. His knees aren't bent, the torso and feet are never "twisted in opposite directions" in the wringing manner I refer to, and aikido, unlike bagua, is straightforward - uke attacks and nage throws. Bagua includes strikes with every unique parameters, and often a dynamic reciprocal exchange with both people attacking and defending in very subtle ways.

2. Ueshiba K. has been asked this question directly, and he stated that his father showed no interest in Chinese martial arts. (Perhaps, one will say, this is more politics, but none of the uchi-deshi, all of whom had to get up in the middle of the night to attend to Ueshiba and/or train with him in aiki, in weapons, etc., ever recalls him walking the circle. Note too, that in the 1950's. and early 1960's, Japan was so ignorant of Chinese martial arts that in a set of law suits between Sato Kimbei (a pioneer of bringing genuine Chinese martial arts to Japan) and the Shorinji Kempo organization, the latter, in attacking Sato, accused him of making up the existence of Bagua and Hsingi, claiming that neither existed any longer in China. Other than t'ai chi and the mythical shaolin (shorinji), almost no one in Japan had heard of the variety of Chinese martial arts. Wang Shu Chin, Sato's first major teacher, was always referred to as a t'ai chi teacher, even though he used that art to teach beginners - he was a hsingi, bagua instructor.

Ueshiba, in the 20's, 30's, 40's and 50's could easily have "walked the circle" and done the palm changes and when his students asked what he was doing, could have said he learned it from the Tengu and no one would have been the wiser.

3. In most of Ueshiba's known trips to China, he was a dignitary. Where could he have found the privacy to have taken lessons in such an esoteric art - I've travelled with Japanese teachers in "official trips" and it's very hard to ever be alone. Remember, Ueshiba is not known to have spoken Chinese. He would have somehow had to a) sneak out, find a Bagua master or be found by one and with no language in common, be taught b) do it publicly, which defeats the thesis.

4. Ueshiba is, however, known to have observed Chinese martial arts. There is (perhaps deceased now) a man by the name of Takeda, who in the 1930's lived in Beijing, and studied a soft-style martial art called Tom Bei Ch'uan ("Thru the back" boxing), a style of pugilism which makes the "center" between the shoulder blades, and does rapid trapping and slapping, but at a crouch and longer range than, say, Wing Chun. This art, though once again popular in China, (taught in Japan - teacher is named Tsunematsu, a returned war-orphan from N. China), was almost extinct in China at the time. Takeda wrote a textbook of the art - and he posed for the photos. The book is still sold in China, I believe. Anyway, Takeda stated in an interview in the mid-1980's that in 1936, during one of the get-togethers he had at his house in Beijing among martial artists, he was visited by some high ranking Japanese, among them Ueshiba Morihei.

Sorry - long-winded nit-picking. In sum, Ueshiba surely saw some Chinese martial arts. There is no evidence in his personal history, and no particular evidence in his movements that he studied any.

Ellis Amdur

Mark Balogh
09-03-2004, 04:36 AM
Quite likely a mistake by the translator - AFAIK, Morihei Ueshiba made no trips to China after the war.

Best,

Chris

That doesn't sound very likely Chris. :rolleyes:

I am sure I read something the other day about O'sensei going out to China regularly to visit someone. It may have been Tomiki according to this Fujita Sensei interview in Aikido Journal #120.

AJ: I understand your father learned aikido from Ueshiba Sensei in Manchuria.
Fujita: Yes, he was originally a judo man and he continued to practice judo during his work posting in Manchuria. There was a group called the Manchuria Budo Society (Manshu Budokai) whose members got together to practice not only judo, but kendo, sumo and other arts as well. My father was one of those involved in running this group and so he knew quite a few of the people practicing other martial arts. It was through that connection that he learned aikido when Morihei Ueshiba was invited to Manchuria. He trained with people like Kenji Tomiki (1900-1979), who was a professor at Manchuria's Kenkoku University, and sumo wrestler Saburo Wakuta (1903-1989, also known as Tenryu, a well-known wrestler who began learning aikido after being impressed by the techniques of Morihei Ueshiba).

The article is here...

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=103 :)

PeterR
09-03-2004, 04:57 AM
Mark - trips to visit Kenji Tomiki in Manchuria were done before the war ended. After the war of course the Japanese were booted out of Manchuria with several, including Kenji Tomiki, imprisoned by the Russians.

It was quite a few years before Japanese started to make trips back to China.

Mark Balogh
09-03-2004, 05:01 AM
Thanks Peter, my mistake.

I know that I can't show sources, but I would speculate that it is pretty likely O'sensei went back after this time. Does anyone know for sure? :)

Peter Goldsbury
09-03-2004, 07:34 AM
Thanks Peter, my mistake.

I know that I can't show sources, but I would speculate that it is pretty likely O'sensei went back after this time. Does anyone know for sure? :)

Hello,

I think that if Morihei Ueshiba visited China after the war, the aikido world would have known about it. He was cloistered in Iwama until around 1956.

It is clear that he visited Hawaii after WWII, but I think it highly unlikely that he would have made a secret postwar visit to China, unknown to anyone else in the aikido world, and also studied Chinese martial arts.

Where is the evidence?

Best wishes,

Chris Li
09-03-2004, 03:32 PM
That doesn't sound very likely Chris. :rolleyes:

I am sure I read something the other day about O'sensei going out to China regularly to visit someone. It may have been Tomiki according to this Fujita Sensei interview in Aikido Journal #120.

AJ: I understand your father learned aikido from Ueshiba Sensei in Manchuria.
Fujita: Yes, he was originally a judo man and he continued to practice judo during his work posting in Manchuria. There was a group called the Manchuria Budo Society (Manshu Budokai) whose members got together to practice not only judo, but kendo, sumo and other arts as well. My father was one of those involved in running this group and so he knew quite a few of the people practicing other martial arts. It was through that connection that he learned aikido when Morihei Ueshiba was invited to Manchuria. He trained with people like Kenji Tomiki (1900-1979), who was a professor at Manchuria's Kenkoku University, and sumo wrestler Saburo Wakuta (1903-1989, also known as Tenryu, a well-known wrestler who began learning aikido after being impressed by the techniques of Morihei Ueshiba).

The article is here...

http://www.aikidojournal.com/article.php?articleID=103 :)

Everything the article is talking about is pre-war (and pre-Nishio) trips to occupied China. Those are well documented. In order to have gone with Nishio he would have had to make post-war trips, and there is no record of that.

Best,

Chris

Pankration90
10-29-2004, 03:21 PM
Maybe taoist orientated but I don't think its taoist derived. Similarly, it might be reasonable to say that Japanese martial arts derived its ancestry from Chinese martial arts, in particular through the same route as had the Chinese martial arts derived its ancestry from India; the shaolin monks.

Kung Fu as you know it, was taught to the chinese monks by an indian monk so as to facilitate their rigorous training and meditation.
That's a common claim among many martial artists, but I have yet to see any evidence of Damo actually teaching the Shaolin monks. I have seen evidence against it.

Either way, Shaolin was not the source of all Chinese martial arts. The Chinese had their own methods of fighting (such as shuai chiao) long before the "Shaolin" styles were formed.

People with no training can fight, so how much imagination does it take to consider the possibility that civilizations can find out how to fight on their own and develop their own methods? ;)

I'm not saying that styles haven't influenced eachother, but martial arts did not spring from any one source.

If that myth is true (that Damo/Boddidharma brought martial arts from India to China and then it spread to Korea and Japan), then what about Greek martial arts (wrestling, boxing, and pankration)? Were those the predecessors of Indian martial arts?

jennifer paige smith
04-13-2007, 12:01 PM
Aikido is very Taoist-oriented, especially when it comes to the principle of non-resistance.

The Tao is symbolically expressed as :triangle: :circle: :square: .

Nature, the eventual object and inpiration of O'Sensei's teachings, does not recognize cultural or political borders; nor does it express human territorial distinctions. Aikido is Nature; the practice of :triangle: :circle: :square:

Wherever nature runs abundant you will find the source.

Cady Goldfield
04-13-2007, 12:20 PM
I'd suggest that Chis Gee's (the thread starter) original comments are not quite accurate when he states that Daito-ryu was "not the only" art that contributed to Aikido, and then goes on to point out the internal Chinese arts of Xingyi and Bagua as other contributers.

Ueshiba got his internal skills only from Daito-ryu, as subsequent discussions on Aikido history have pointed out. However, those discussions also stated that it is very likely that DR and other Japanese arts with internal skills in turn received those internal aspects from Chinese sources that also provided the internal skills that became part of Xingyi and Bagua. In other words, all of these arts got their internal components from an earlier Chinese source. But Xingyi and Bagua themselves as discrete styles/systems did not in themselves contribute directly to Aikido.

Sorry, for the aside, Jennifer, but you did dredge up this old thread. ;)

dbotari
04-13-2007, 01:53 PM
Wherever nature runs abundant you will find the source.

Then we are also the source.

gdandscompserv
04-13-2007, 04:57 PM
Then we are also the source.
Of course we are!
You don't see dogs practicing aikido do you?
:D

Rupert Atkinson
04-14-2007, 01:51 AM
These similar threads keep poppoing up and I think I wrote something likeswise before, but here goes.

In 1990 I met Mr. So in Tokyo - he taught Taichi, Ba-gwa, and Hsing-I. It was at the time I was leaving so I could not really join. I trained only once and went back to watch several more times. What he did had me mesmerised. Hsing-I was pure irimi, Ba-gwa was pure tenkan, and when he put it together with a man in front of him it was instant Jujutsu. His strikes, trips, reaps, and throws were superb but not choreographed at all, totally spontaneous. He arrived at the destination of 'Jujutsu' without its form. He practised 'movement' in separate blocks and his 'essence of change' allowed him to piece the bits together to make superb technique in the moment. What I saw has changed the way I do things ever since, though I know I could never reach what that man had. Now, I break everything down and practise the parts - reverse engineering if you like, and I find it works very well for me.

As for it influencing Aikido, I doubt it. The similarity is remarkable, perhaps, but Ueshiba went to China after extensive training. He might have picked up a few things but it would not have altered what he did too much. If it had, others would have noticed and it would be documented in some way. His way of doing things is totally Japanese, in my opinion.

dps
08-17-2009, 09:26 PM
Here is an interesting excerpt (http://books.google.com/books?id=8cU3iwsCCM4C&pg=PA118&lpg=PA118&dq=influence+opponent%27s+chi&source=bl&ots=iUOsNHOEwd&sig=r1wZ_SAUKA07-sTntQ45hBI3a4U&hl=en&ei=Rw2KSqnaHI7kNfC7-b0P&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2#v=onepage&q=&f=false) from a book by Bruce Frantzis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Frantzis)

Does anyone know the author.

What do you think about his idea that the physical techniques of Aikido are Daito-Ryu but the ability to use ki (aiki ?)is from ba gua?

David

gdandscompserv
08-17-2009, 09:54 PM
Great balls of ki David. Do you realize what this thread will become?:eek:

Rabih Shanshiry
08-17-2009, 10:24 PM
Pure speculation on the part of BK Frantzis. Others have commented on the topic:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2098
http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6259

dps
08-17-2009, 11:41 PM
Thanks for the links Ricky.

The threads seem to talk more about technique which Bruce Frantzis states they came from DR.

What about what Mr. Frantizis indicates about ki coming from ba qua. With what O'Sensei learned about ki in his DR training, would he need much training to learn the way chi is trained in ba gua?

David

Larry Feldman
08-18-2009, 11:50 AM
I tend to go with the 'no historical evidence' to support the Chinese arts influenced Ueshiba.

The body is only built one way, good systems with similar philosophies will find similar ways to attack the vulnerabilities.

If you have interest in the similarities, which there are many - go study with someone who has trained in both. My current teacher has 30+ years of Aikido, and a similar amount of time in the Chinese arts including Tai Chi, Chinese Boxing, and some others. He regularly points out the similarities, when in town for a seminar. I find it interesting and helpful in understanding Aikido, or at least the Chinese view of what we are trying to do.

He threatened to author some books on the subject, before the books mentioned were published - but he prefers practice...

dps
08-18-2009, 12:23 PM
So we can safely say that O'Sensei's Aikido was mainly from what his sensei taught him and that his development was aided by his connection with a religion where he found deeper meaning to his training. As he grew older he developed his ideas and ability from his training in his Aikido and his study of his religious beliefs.

Would this be a fair assessment?

David

David Orange
08-18-2009, 12:52 PM
O'Sensei went to China on 2 major occations once as a solider and also as a body guard. During this time he pitted himself against many chinese martial artists. There are no records of these duals.

How do you know he fought anyone if there are no records of those duels?

DH
08-18-2009, 04:19 PM
Ueshiba's life was pretty well documented and his whereabuts and coming and goings have been checked and cross checked.

This is a repeat

Aikiweb Interview with Stan Pranin

Quote:
AW: O-sensei also reportedly studied a lot of other koryu arts outside of Daito-ryu.
SP: I would say that that's not true.
If you look at it historically, he went up to Tokyo in 1901 and spent about a year there. During this stay in Tokyo when he was training to become a merchant, he did a little bit of Tenjin Shinryo-ryu jujutsu. It was probably a "machi" dojo, in other words a small dojo in the Asakusa area of Tokyo. He would go there at night, but it was probably about three or four months total since he got very ill with beriberi and had to leave Tokyo and return to Tanabe. He was doing it while working very hard during the day and it was a very brief period of only a few months. It would be difficult to imagine that that had a strong, technical influence.
By the same token when he was in the army, he also began studying Yagyu-ryu jujutsu. There are some questions about what the actual name of the art was. O-sensei referred to it as Yagyu-ryu jujutsu, while [Kisshomaru Ueshiba] Doshu did some research and said it was Goto-ha Yagyu Shingan-ryu or similar name.
He was in the army at the time and also was sent to Manchuria for a part of the time. It was hard for me to imagine him going regularly while being in the army, so I don't know if his training was on the weekends or what. He apparently was enthusiastic about his training but there just weren't the circumstances to allow a detailed study.
He did, however, continue to study a little bit of Yagyu-ryu after he got out of the army, but he was in Tanabe which was a couple of hundred miles away and he had to go up by ferry! Again, maybe he went up three, four, or a half a dozen times, but it wasn't the sort of thing of an intensive study with someone year after year.
Now, he did have a makimono (scroll) as well -- however, it bears no seal. One can only speculate what that meant. Sometimes what happens is that a person would be told to prepare a makimono or have someone prepare it and, for whatever circumstance or reason, the teacher never gets around to signing it. Therefore, the scroll cannot be considered official.
So, it would appear that he did study this Yagyu-ryu form more than the Tenjin Shinryo-ryu jujutsu, but probably at the most he did a year or two.
The other art that he studied, but again not in very much depth, would have been judo. The first description of the teacher who was sent down from the Kodokan to Tanabe by O-sensei's father to teach Morihei and various relatives and friends gave the impression that this judo teacher was somewhat of an expert. It turns out he was 17 years old. I met his wife back in the 1980s and she told me this directly. He could have been a shodan, maximum. Also, O-sensei was involved with other things in this transition phase of his life trying to figure out what he was going to be doing as a career. One of the reasons, according to Doshu, that this judo person was brought in was to help him focus and channel his energies. But O-sensei ended up going to Hokkaido.
So, you have
a. this very brief stint in Tenjin Shinryo Ryu,
b. some training in Yagyu Ryu jujutsu while in the army,
c. a smattering of judo,
d. (20+years) In Daito-ryu.
That's it. The impression that he studied many different arts other than Daito-ryu and mastered them is completely false.

Stan was pretty clear
I always look at these debates and ask a simple question.
Q: Had he studied all these arts, why was it, on that auspicious day:
1. when he was ready to hang a shingle
2. when it came time to make his mark
3. Why did he open the door and choose to teach and hand out scrolls in......
Daito ryu?
And that for approx. 16 years. You know all those Pre-war deshi supposedly doing Aikido up to 1938? They were all ranked in Daito ryu by the old man himself. Why? Because it was all he really knew.

And when he completed further research later on and arrived at the end of all things in his life the old man never waivered, and never changed from his first roots in aiki. He still only referred to his power as Aiki.
Why?
Ueshiba was an aiki man through and through. He said it himself. "Takeda opened my eyes to true budo."And he, like all of Takeda's men before and after him- was still an Aiki-man through and through at the end of their careers.
As a group; all five of them were living legends.
Cheers
Dan