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Old 01-24-2001, 04:22 PM   #1
Dojo: Tulsa Aikido & Jujutsu
Location: Tulsa, OK
Join Date: Nov 2000
Posts: 33
i was just wondering what saotome senseis weapons credentials were. is he self taught, or did he study any weapons arts other than aikido? i am wondering because i see him doing iai in some of his books. thanks!

Always be well,
Bobby David
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Old 01-24-2001, 05:22 PM   #2
Chris Li
Chris Li's Avatar
Dojo: Aikido Sangenkai
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 3,307
dainippon99 wrote:
i was just wondering what saotome senseis weapons credentials were. is he self taught, or did he study any weapons arts other than aikido? i am wondering because i see him doing iai in some of his books. thanks!
The bulk of the weapons that he teaches is basically stuff that he's made up himself. So far as I know he's never had any significant weapons training (in a formal environment that is). My Shinto Katori-ryu teacher says that he used to come watch the classes, but he never actually trained there.

I've seen him teach some of the seitai iai kata, but he wasn't all that good at it, I thought. His other weapons work is somewhat different from classical weapons, but it's quite good for Aikido practice in that it's designed to elaborate and clarify his conceptions of Aikido principals.


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Old 02-05-2001, 09:27 AM   #3
Dan Hover
Dojo: Bond Street Dojo/Aikido of Greater Milwaukee
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 132
Yes Saotome's stuff is even self admitted made up. He has said that his Ni to system was made up over the course of years after watching a TV show where the hero demonstrated Ni to techniques. Now one caveat here though, aiki ken is NOT Kenjutsu, aiki ken is there to teach you aikido not ken jutsu per se. In fact Osensei himself has a somewhat spotty record on his Ken training, His name does appear on the Kashima ryu scrolls, but he had hired teachers to come to the Budokan to teach. He observed the classes and had his son show him later what he had learned. Saito's Ken forms the first two are verbatim from kashima ryu but after that...they are not that systemized as Osensei was known not to really organize his style all that well, furthermore Saito himself has changed some of these forms over the years. Saotome's stuff on the other hand shows good use of the concept of Marubashi which is in fact taken from Shinkage ryu Kenjutsu. He uses this predominately in the first 3 kumitachi he has. His style lacks some of the classical elements of traditional Ken styles (i.e. rolling the sword around the wrist instead of the shoulder and lack of post kata zanshin) Nevertheless it is worth a look at, for what it is, aiki-ken and a chance to look study human behavior.

Dan Hover

of course that's my opinion, I could be wrong
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