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Old 05-29-2008, 09:02 AM   #1
Chris Farnham
Dojo: Aikido of Champlain Valley/Hamamatsu Aikidokai/Aikido Shidokai
Location: Hamamatsu, Japan
Join Date: Aug 2007
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Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

I will be in Hamamatsu City for a year starting in August, and wonder if anyone who either lives there, or has been there and trained can suggest a dojo. I have found a of Dojos couple online, but have very little information on any of them. I have been training for 5 years at a USAF dojo, with a teacher who has a lot of influence from Chiba Sensei( He was a long time student of Paul Sylvain, and one of Chiba Sensei's Kenshusei in the mid 90's), so an Aikikai dojo would be great, but I am really looking for the best teacher, regardless of style and affiliation in the Hamamatsu area. Any information, and or personal experiences would be great!
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Old 05-29-2008, 07:41 PM   #2
Carl Thompson
 
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Hello Chris,

Congratulations on an excellent placement. Are you a JET?

I lived in Hamamatsu for a year, so you should definitely get in touch with me (send me a PM). I'm afraid I didn't have much luck finding Aikikai dojos first time around, although I know of a few now. The Aikido scene is dominated by Seifukai style (Yoseikan Budo), so I ended up mainly doing that for the duration. They practiced in the city Budokan and Toyoda-cho. I found a Tesshinkan (style of aiki based on the wakizashi) dojo at the Shizudai campus and I had some friends doing Shodokan.

The airforce base has an Aikikai dojo, but I got surrounded by guys with machine guns when I tried to enter. They gave me some forms to fill in to get permission, but it was going to take a couple of months. I found a dojo in Kakegawa that shares with a karate club but I was leaving Japan by that point. I later found an Aikikai group connected to the university training in the city, plus Hamakita, Iwata and Kakegawa. There's also a fourth dan teaching in nearby Fukuroi and there's a dojo just over the prefectural border in Toyohashi.

I might check out one of these dojos myself soon, since I go back to visit every now and again, so I'll keep you posted.



Carl

Last edited by Carl Thompson : 05-29-2008 at 07:43 PM. Reason: word spacing
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Old 06-01-2008, 04:52 PM   #3
David Orange
Dojo: Aozora Dojo
Location: Birmingham, AL
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
I lived in Hamamatsu for a year, so you should definitely get in touch with me (send me a PM). I'm afraid I didn't have much luck finding Aikikai dojos first time around, although I know of a few now. The Aikido scene is dominated by Seifukai style (Yoseikan Budo), so I ended up mainly doing that for the duration. They practiced in the city Budokan and Toyoda-cho.
Interesting, Carl. Who was the teacher you trained with in Hamamatsu? I used to go there from time to time when I was at the yoseikan hombu in Shizuoka. The folks I knew best in Hamamatsu were from the jr. college there but they had a "genki taiki" once or twice a year and everyone would go down for that. Did you ever meet a guy named Wakabayashi? He was very small, but excellent. He was a tandai student and I met his teacher a few times but can't remember his name.

Best wishes.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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Old 06-01-2008, 08:05 PM   #4
Carl Thompson
 
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Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka Prefecture?

Quote:
David Orange wrote: View Post
Who was the teacher you trained with in Hamamatsu? I used to go there from time to time when I was at the yoseikan hombu in Shizuoka.
Hello David. Were they Yoseikan students you trained with or Seifukai? It's just I got the impression that they were separate organisations. I trained under Namiki Sensei in the Seifukai for one year, about five years ago. I'm afraid I can't remember any Wakabayashi but I only trained once or twice a week, usually during the quiet daytime classes because of my schedule. There was a huge Brazilian guy named George I'll never forget! I was pretty much always in the Budokan or Toyoda-cho dojo.

BTW: Thanks for the PM Chris. I'll send you my email.
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Old 06-04-2008, 07:25 PM   #5
David Orange
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Re: Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka Prefecture?

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Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
Hello David. Were they Yoseikan students you trained with or Seifukai? It's just I got the impression that they were separate organisations.
They're separate organizations now, but when I was there (1990-1995), the Shizuoka City dojo, where Minoru Mochizuki lived and taught was called yoseikan budo. The sign beside the door said "yoseikan budo kokusai hombu dojo" (yoseikan budo international headquarters dojo). Seifukai was formed after Mochizuki Sensei moved to France to live out his last few years with his son, Hiroo, now world head of yoseikan budo.

But in those days, we were all yoseikan budo. Seifukai was formed by the top shihan who served Mochizuki Sensei from the early 1970s until he left Japan in about 1999.

All those shihan, by the way, received menkyo kaiden certificates in yoseikan budo from Minoru Mochizuki. Among them was Patrick Auge, who does essentially the same thing as the Seifukai but continues to call his art yoseikan budo. The thread you linked has some good information but a lot of misinformation as well, delivered third-hand.

Seifu was the "pen name" Mochizuki Sensei used for his philosophical writings. He even published a little periodical newsletter called Seifu, in which he expounded his views on various subjects. The people who formed Seifukai were with him daily over thirty or more years. The meijin of Seifukai, Kyoichi Murai, was Mochizuki Sensei's highest-ranked student, from the early 1950s. He was an incredible martial artist and would now be about 93 years old. What Seifukai represented was the art that Minoru Mochizuki developed and practiced from the early 1970s on. Those men are featured in all his technical books and they were the ones who taught and trained with the countless international visitors to the Shizuoka City dojo.

It is true that Mochizuki Sensei designated his son, Hiroo, as the world head of yoseikan budo upon his own retirement, but he did leave 20 men with menkyo kaiden, qualifying them to make their own judgments.

The seifukai point of view is that Hiroo Sensei divided yoseikan budo into several divisions, including aikido, karate, judo, etc. The masters of the old hombu dojo asked him to include a division for the art that his father had created and taught in Shizuoka. Hiroo Sensei, for his own reasons, chose not to do that. He also denied the old Shizuoka masters the right to teach that art as yoseikan budo. So they formed the seifukai (society of Seifu) to teach the art that Minoru Mochizuki (Seifu) created and taught, and in which they each held menkyo kaiden.

So when I was there, it was yoseikan budo. When you were there, it was the art I learned as yosekan budo, taught under a different name.

So that's what that is.

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
I trained under Namiki Sensei in the Seifukai for one year, about five years ago. I'm afraid I can't remember any Wakabayashi but I only trained once or twice a week, usually during the quiet daytime classes because of my schedule.
I didn't know Namiki Sensei. Too bad you didn't meet Wakabayashi. He was a great talent for such a young man and he got a lot of instruction from Mochizuki Sensei. I would really like to see him again.

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
There was a huge Brazilian guy named George I'll never forget! I was pretty much always in the Budokan or Toyoda-cho dojo.
I fought a Brazilian/Japanese guy for my judo black belt in Hamamatsu. Did you ever meet the judo sensei Mizushima in Hamamatsu? He was great.

Best to you.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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Old 06-04-2008, 07:56 PM   #6
Carl Thompson
 
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Hi David,

Thank you very much for a very informative post! All these years I've been embarrassingly in the dark about something I practiced for a whole year. All I've had to go on have been random things I found on the internet like the post I linked to and what little I can recall of conversations I had in poor Japanese. You have shed a lot of light on what I was doing and I am most grateful!

While looking for dojos with Chris, I came across this video on YouTube. George (or Jorge) is about three and a half minutes in, grabbing the girl's throat. I think Namiki sensei is sitting on the right as it starts up but it's not a clear shot. If I ever met Mizushima Sensei, I didn't learn his name, or at least not well enough for it to stick. This vid really brings back memories. 懐かしい

Thanks again for the information!

Carl

Last edited by Carl Thompson : 06-04-2008 at 07:59 PM.
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Old 06-04-2008, 08:55 PM   #7
David Orange
Dojo: Aozora Dojo
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Quote:
Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
While looking for dojos with Chris, I came across this video on YouTube. George (or Jorge) is about three and a half minutes in, grabbing the girl's throat. I think Namiki sensei is sitting on the right as it starts up but it's not a clear shot.
Carl,

Talk about memories! The guy talking at the first and leading a lot of the practice is Sugiyama Sensei ("big" Sugiyama), one of the scariest people I met in Shizuoka. Once at a demo, he threw a guy completely off the stage. He was tough but a very good man. His brother was superlative in sword (also Sugiyama Sensei, but I thought of him as "little Sugiyama" because he was more slender than "big Sugiyama," who has a kind of gorilla physique. It's great to see him again in action. That video also showed a lot of the folks I knew very well, but I couldn't be sure of all of them on a quick viewing. I did see Wakabayashi in there and Kitagawa, two guys I practiced with a lot. Here they are doing hyori no kata:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2iYlo5TUfbM

I believe this was at a daitoryu anniversary celebration where Tezuka and Washizu demonstrated sword-taking techniques. In the clip above, Wakabayashi is the one with the tall hair. Kitagawa is the one with the short hair. They were both very good.

Here's another clip that I'm on:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZKrk...eature=related

I show up in the randori demo from 2:04 on, uke in all cases. Wakabayashi is in there also. Tori for the first part is Aoki, who was very good. Then it shifts to show Washizu as tori. He also shows up a few times in the clip you linked as uke.

Those were great people. I'll review your clip again more closely to see what else I see there. I will say it was good to see them working with so many children. There were always a lot of kids at the old hombu--especially Saturday and Sunday mornings for judo. The aikido training was mostly way too dangerous for them.

Again, thanks and best wishes.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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Old 06-05-2008, 12:17 AM   #8
Carl Thompson
 
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Quote:
David Orange wrote: View Post
Talk about memories! The guy talking at the first and leading a lot of the practice is Sugiyama Sensei ("big" Sugiyama), one of the scariest people I met in Shizuoka.
Yep, I remember him. I can barely remember anyone's names and I got Namiki sensei almost every time but I remembered Sugiyama sensei's face at least when I saw the video. I think I only ever got personally corrected off him a couple of times, but the feeling of power lingers in my brain. I was a complete beginner in this kind of aikido when I arrived. I only had a couple of years and a 5th kyu in Aikikai-esque (but independent) aikido from my uni club previously and I went down to 10th kyu when I started Seifukai. Unfortunately, I never graded the whole time I was there, since they were always on weekends which I had to work. I had some good times though even if I got a bit confused with all the differences.

I hadn't searched for ages but I just found they have a new website.

http://www.hama-aikido.com/site/loadPage/6

This is Namiki Sensei:



There are plenty of other familiar faces in there too, but I think you'll be able to better put names to faces than me. I trained a lot with the slim, dark Brazilian guy but could barely talk to him in Japanese, let alone Portuguese.

Carl
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Old 06-06-2008, 10:55 AM   #9
David Orange
Dojo: Aozora Dojo
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Carl,

Thanks for the picture. I remember Namiki Sensei's face, but never knew his name. He came around the hombu dojo from time to time but he wasn't one of the regulars there.

Best to you.

David

"That which has no substance can enter where there is no room."
Lao Tzu

"Eternity forever!"

www.davidorangejr.com
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Old 08-12-2008, 09:16 PM   #10
Massao/Seifukai
Dojo: Seifukai
Location: Hamamatsu
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Hi!!!!Look this videos
http://jp.youtube.com/watch?v=ASJ4DasnvPs
http://jp.youtube.com/watch?v=X7tH6P...eature=related
http://jp.youtube.com/watch?v=cLudLs...eature=related
http://jp.youtube.com/watch?v=dJh9zc...eature=related
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Old 11-10-2008, 05:02 PM   #11
Luca Idolazzi
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Sorry for the bad news, but just today this fact was reported to us by our Master, a close friend of Tezuka sensei

Yesterday Tezuka Akira sensei passed away. He was one of the faithful uchi deshi of Mochizuki Minoru sensei and practised with energy at the old Yoseikan Dojo in Shizuoka. He strongly believed in Budo and tradition and preserved them through the years with his everyday practise. He continued Master Mochizuki's work in Shizuoka Yoseikan dojo with the Budo Seifukai. He left a big gap in Yoseikan tradition
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Old 01-27-2009, 10:12 AM   #12
lezard39
Dojo: Académie Yoseikan de Montréal
Location: Montréal
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Interesting video of Sensei Murai teaching...

http://b.hatena.ne.jp/entry/7466922
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Old 05-01-2009, 07:19 AM   #13
Chris Knapp
Dojo: Seifukai/Hamamatsu
Location: Hamamatsu
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

>>>I trained a lot with the slim, dark Brazilian guy but could barely talk to him in Japanese, let alone Portuguese.

That sounds like YAMAUCHI Masao, who posted to this thread with links to current Seifukai video. Another skilled Japanese Brazillian of Yoseikan and then Seifukai is KAWANISHI Isao, 3dan, who recently returned to Brazil. Pictured here are Namiki sensei, Sugiyama sensei, and Kawanishi about a month ago at Kawanishi's sayonara party.
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Old 05-01-2009, 07:18 PM   #14
Carl Thompson
 
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Re: Anyone have any Dojo suggestions in Hamamatsu City, Shizouka Prefecture?

Hello Chris!

Thanks for the info. I ended up transferring back to Hamamatsu and have been training with Chris Farnham who started this thread. We tried a few local Aikikai dojos of varying quality and finally ended up with a group of "Aiki-Ronin" near Shizudai. I'm afraid I haven't had time to do that and fit in restarting Seifukai.

I actually called by Hamamatsu Budokan a couple of months ago and briefly spoke to you while I was talking with Namiki sensei (Sugiyama sensei was teaching the class). I remembered you as my occasional "English life-line" and I think I owe you some thanks for the help you gave me about six years ago. If you ever want to catch up, just send me a PM. It was actually quite strange and very satisfying to have my first proper conversation ever with Namiki Sensei whom I could now understand. I also met the big Brazilian Jorge in my local supermarket a while back and he was giving me big slaps on the back and congratulating me on my newfound ability to communicate.

I'm afraid I will be leaving Hamamatsu again once my contract ends in a couple of months, so I'm unlikely to restart Seifukai. Is there any option to just train once or twice as a visitor rather than becoming a full member?

Kind regards

Carl

PS: If you're staying in town for Golden Week, have a great time at Hamamatsu Matsuri!
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