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Old 11-17-2004, 05:05 AM   #1
Michael Cardwell
Dojo: Snake River Aikido
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 78
O-sensei's training

I have always been somewhat interested in the history of Aikido, and specifically in O-sensei's martial training. Everything I had read and heard up until now said that O-sensei trained in lots of different martial arts before he developed Aikido. So I was surprised when I read the article that Stan Pranin wrote that is posted on this site, that says:

"So, you have this very brief stint in Tenjin Shinryo Ryu, some training in Yagyu Ryu jujutsu while in the army, a smattering of judo, and then Daito-ryu. That's it. The impression that he studied many different arts other than Daito-ryu and mastered them is completely false."

However I read in one of John Stevens books that O-sensei himself said that he had studied over thirty martial arts. Now even though O-sensei said he only studied some of these arts for a month at a time, I am curious as to why there is such a discrepancy between what O-sensei supposedly said and what Mr.Pranin is saying. That is like over 26 martial arts unaccounted for. Anybody have any ideas?
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Old 11-17-2004, 05:47 AM   #2
Dojo: Aikido of Midland
Location: Midland Texas
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,652
Re: O-sensei's training

I would look at what Kisshomaru said he studied in his book on aikido.
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Old 11-17-2004, 06:11 AM   #3
Mark Balogh
Dojo: Mushinkan Dojo, Guildford
Location: Surrey, UK
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 106
Re: O-sensei's training

I think Koichi Tohei talks a bit about this in his first book "Aikido: Co-ordination of Mind and Body for Self Defence". IIRC, he says something about O'sensei spending his inheritance going around studying everything he could, many martials arts etc. including modern gymnastics.
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Old 11-17-2004, 02:15 PM   #4
Dojo: Messores Sensei (Largo, Fl.)
Location: Florida
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 1,267
Re: O-sensei's training

John Riggs wrote:
I would look at what Kisshomaru said he studied in his book on aikido.
Kisshomaru was certainly in the thick of things, but I think he had an agenda and what he said needs to be cross-referenced with other, more objective opinions.

Don J. Modesto
St. Petersburg, Florida
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Old 11-17-2004, 10:51 PM   #5
Charles Hill
Dojo: Numazu Aikikai/Aikikai Honbu Dojo
Location: Three Lakes WI/ Mishima Japan
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 837
Re: O-sensei's training

I read somewhere he had a license in the Yagyu. Also, there were kendoka in his family on his mother`s side. There is then the local sumo that almost all Japanese boys still take part in. Apparently Ueshiba was good at that and likely practiced a lot. I don`t see such a huge discrepency. Mr. Pranin`s strong emphasis of Daito ryu, imho, was partly fueled by the strong denial of it he ran into at Honbu.

Charles Hill
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