Aikido is a Japanese self-defense martial art developed by Morihei Ueshiba that improves physical health and mental flexibility. It rooted mainly from a traditional martial art of Daitō-ryū Aiki-jūjutsu. However, O-Sensei (the great teacher), the founder refered title, began to evolve it as a result of his martial elaborations and life experiences in the late 1920s.
The art of peace, as it is also refered to, is a non-competitive and nonaggressive martial art with Budo (the way of the samurai) tradition which formed of 3 Japanese characters.
“Ai” is harmony, joining
“Ki” is energy, spirit, power
“Do” is way, path
By the meaning of the characters, in terminology aikido means a way or path to harmonize the energy of the universe coordinated with mind, body, and spirit. Fundamentally, aikido is harmonizing with an attacker. In practical term, aikido uses the force of an attack against its aggressor to control the opponent by applying a lock, throw, or pin.
In implementation, aikido is more than just techniques, but it is a martial art tactic and strategy. It describes an idea of oneness with the movement of the opponent, not clashing. When applied judicially, aikido techniques can canalize, divert, and immobilize attacks, rather than damage or create frictions. Thus, aikido techniques are effective, but merciful response in anticipating attacks without inflicting injury.
In application, aikido uses combination of circular movements. By using circular movement pattern, an aikidoka can harmonize and free to lead various attacks, although they are linear or angular. Circular movement can naturally blend in with attacks because it is not blocking or stopping them.
Instead, it directs for effective control.