Sports News

ES Students Attend their First Aikido Seminar in Tokyo!

ES Students Attend their First Aikido Seminar in Tokyo!

Even though Aikido has no matches or competitions, there are plenty of opportunities for aikidoka to challenge themselves, meet other practitioners, and experience different approaches to the art. A major source of such challenge and discovery usually comes under the form of seminars, which are technical masterclasses placed under the direction of one or several teachers. Those can last from half-a-day up to an entire week in the case of resident training.

For the past two year, most aikidoka around the world have had to forego such opportunities, but thanks to the recent ending of the state of emergency, most Aikido clubs of the Greater Tokyo area have resumed their activity to some extent. With the academic year almost over, we decided that it would be wonderful to offer at least one opportunity to our students to experience an Aikido seminar.

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Andrew Sensei and his assistants pair up students so that they get to practice with the largest range of people possible, especially with those of other dojos.

Last Sunday, students from our Elementary School Aikido Club and our Saturday class met the members of Zenten Aikido, the organizers of the course, at Minato Sports Center for a class instructed in English. The two-hour format was a big challenge compared to the usual one-hour classes but the level of focus and enthusiasm remained impressively high throughout.

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Aikido's thorough warm-ups include calisthenics in order to reinforce inner muscles for a safe practice.

Zenten Aikido’s head instructor Andrew Leitch (3rd dan) kicked off the training with a very dynamic and thorough warm up, and then went onto more technical aspects of Aikido’s vast curriculum. Yokohama AikiDojo’s head instructor and Saint Maur Biology teacher Guillaume Erard (5th dan) followed up with some more techniques that called upon the same principles studied earlier. The class finished with a bang – quite literally – at the sound of all instructors slamming on the mat as they were thrown in succession by every student present!

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Attention to details is an important aspect of courses.

After the class, all children were treated with some ice cream courtesy of Andrew Sensei and everybody got the chance to mingle while eating.

This course was a wonderful first opportunity for our students and we look forward to attending and even hosting some next year.

The next big date for our students will be on May 20th, when they take their first ever test, stay tuned!