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11-12-2004, 12:27 PM
Hiya! My name is Jay. I am currently a student at the University of Utah. I started in MA at about 8 in a system called Bushi-Ban Karate Do. I've done that for about 11 years and had to stop attending classes because I moved to away for school. Well up here there are many Aikido studios and I have not yet gotten to the point where I can attend regularly, what with a crazy school schedule and all. So I haven't actually taken any aikido but I constantly read about it and get all the books I can (I know I know, nothing compares to actually training, but it's the best I can do right now) I have found one school I am interested in taking from. However I am a little confused. It's called Utah Aikikai. On 3638 S. Highland Dr. Salt Lake City, Ut. Has anyone heard anything about it? Anywayyyz. Why I am confused. Is Aikikai the same as Aikido just with a little bit different name? I am looking for a school that has a good back ground in the physical aspect as well as the philosophical. You know kind of a 50/50 thing. I think this is one. Well I am happy I have found a web site with so many faithful Aikidoka. I hope I get to know many of you well! L8r.

11-12-2004, 12:33 PM
Welcome, Jay!

And welcome to the art.

Aikikai is one branch of aikido - the largest branch, if i am not mistaken. There are others, too (kokikai, tomiki, ki society, etc.). Sometimes this gets confusing because an organization might be quite large but actually still be a part of these branches. That being said, there is considerable difference from school to school even within the same organization and definitely within the same branch of aikido. You really have to check the school out - meet the people, visit, watch a class, talk with the instructor, etc. - to know if it has what you are looking for.

FWIW, I train in an aikikai dojo (of the AAA organization), and I find a good balance between the physical and the philosophical, so I would suggest giving this place you describe a chance.

Best of luck!