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12-08-2004, 02:21 PM
My sensei recently made a statement that to master aiki breathing itself takes years. At the time, I did not have time to elaborate with my sensei. I wanted to learn more about this concept of aiki breathing. Any information from anyone out there who understands the concept he was speaking of I would appreciate your insight.

12-08-2004, 03:21 PM
Ki Society teaches a breathing exercise--I don't know if this is what your sensei was referring to--called "ki breathing".
It's certainly possible to practice and study this for years before doing it really well. When I was visiting Maui Ki Society I discovered just how far out of my depth I was--ability to sustain long, slow, calm breaths, ability to keep centered while doing so (sensei would test us by surprise), abiilty to sit seiza for a long time, ability to keep the entire body relaxed while slowly suffocating.... It was one of the hardest things I've yet tried in aikido.

Kashiwaya sensei has written an introduction to ki breathing which is easy to find on the Web, and the Maui Ki Society
handbook also has some stuff on it, if I recall correctly.

If your sensei means, more generally, controlling and using your breath while doing aikido--I can well believe that mastering that will take the rest of our lives. I'm still working on the basics, such as breathing out when thrown so that I don't hurt myself on landing. I suspect each throw has a particular breathing pattern that will work best for it; I think my teachers aren't talking about that, not because it isn't true, but because the big physical mistakes have to be corrected first.

Mary Kaye

12-08-2004, 05:53 PM
IMHO, breathe in as you enter and blend. Breathe out as you throw.

12-09-2004, 01:06 PM
Thanks for the replies. I think you guys are on the right track as far as understanding what my sensei was referring to. The other morning, he and I were working out together at 530am and he would make me take 20 techniques from him and by the time I got to 17 I could barely fall without landing on my head because I was so tired and he on the other hand recognized this and when he was playing the role of Uke he would take 40 techniques from me in order to allow me to recover, and when this little Vietnamese sensei of mine came up from his forty he wasn't even breathing hard not even in the slightest. It was amazing. After playing college football and being a professional wrestler for a long time, I have to admit I have never witnessed this kind of conditioning. And he just kept telling me it was Aiki breathing, and I will get it eventually but it will take many years to learn to breath from the center and NOT the chest....

12-09-2004, 10:18 PM
It's the same as what the founder stated he called kokyu-ho the "Twenty year" technique...It'll take you twenty years to master it...this form of breathing that your sensei called "aiki breathing".