About Aikido


Aikido is a martial art and spiritual discipline created by Morihei Ueshiba, O Sensei (1883-1969). After years of martial arts study O Sensei devoted himself to the creation of a new art, one based on nonviolence. Aikido (The Way of Harmony) was the result. The school founded by O Sensei still exists in Japan and his students and the students of his students have since spread the art world wide.


Aikido differs from many other martial arts in that all techniques are designed to protect without escalating the conflict. There is no study of attacks and there are no competitions. The main goal is to connect with the energy of an attack and redirect it in such a way as to prevent harm to both the attacker and the defender.


Although there are obvious applications of Aikido to physical self-defense, defense is not the primary reason that most who practice Aikido continue to study the art. The physical experience of Aikido provides tremendous insight into both self and others and is easily adaptable to verbal attacks, which are the most common class of conflict for most people.


People of all ages and body types can participate in Aikido. While practice involves falling and joint immobilization, there is a strong focus on safety and on allowing each student to progress at a rate that is comfortable both physically and psychologically. Adaptations for disabilities or physical limitations due to age can easily be made. With progress, Aikido practice can increase in pace to give aerobic benefits.

Mary Heiny Sensei (6th Dan)