01-28-2003, 10:55 AM
A new review has been posted in the AikiWeb Book database (http://www.aikiweb.com/books/):
Book Title: Aikido Shugyo (http://www.aikiweb.com/books/detail.html?book_id=144)
Book Author: Shioda, Gozo
Review author: Ian Dodkins (email@example.com)
Rating given: 5 (out of 5)
All those stories you've heard about Gozo Shioda and his life and maybe took with a pinch of salt - they're all in here. Though I'd heard alot of this stuff before, it was only word of mouth; this puts some authority behind it and fills in the gaps.
This is not a technique book, nor is it really a method manual. Some of the stories may make you think of Gozo Shioda as a ruthless and violent man - no doubt he would have been without aikido. There is a non-violence message, but I'm not sure he really lived it himself. However this is a must have book if you are training in aikido as a self-defence. For me it illustrated why competition, and even practise in the dojo, can be unrealistic and underlined the importance of basics such as timing, distance and balance.
I would be wary of lending this book to a new student; not because it is difficult in any way, but because it provides an impression of aikido I'm not sure I agree with. However it is invaluable; especially for those who feel they need to reassess their approach to realistic aikido training.
Gozo Shioda was truly an aikido master. This book has historical importance (for the stories) and his insights will help to invigorate your own training.