Aikido and its relations to Judo

I should admit: I know Aikido much less then I would like to. I included some of its techniques in my training, but I never had formal instructions on it. The links, included on this page , will let you to start exploring on you own.

But saying so, I would like to address some very special properties of Aikido that set this art apart from the rest of fighting and martial arts: its philosophy .

Martial art philosophy is not something I spend a lot of time on - what is philosophical about a fist fight after all? But case of Aikido is different – its build on Ômoto-kyô religious philosophy bases as much as on technical moves of Daito-ryu aiki-jujutsu .

In relation to Judo, I would like to address several points:

 Aikido departed from old jujutsu the same way (essentially on the footsteps) as Judo by introduction something more then just fighting techniques: the mental shift. In case of Judo, Dr. Kano introduced Western pedagogical and sporting principals. In case of Aikido, O’Sensei Morihei Ueshiba introduced Japanese Ômoto-kyô philosophy. This is underline by the identical art name change from “jusu” to “do”.

 While starting essentially from the same technical background (and even sharing early students) Judo and Aikido parted in the way they practiced: Aikido retained the notion of asymmetric warfare and not adapted competitive randory as a form of training.

 Teachings of O’Sensei Morihei Ueshiba emphasize notion of cooperative actions for Uke and Tory and removed any “first move” attacking techniques from Daito-ryu aiki-jujutsu arsenal.

Having said this, I want to emphasize that those differences apply not evenly to different Aikido styles (witch in some cases can be seen as different arts: look for discussions on old jujutsu and Judo-SAMBO relationships ).

Tomiki Aikido (founded by Dr. Kano’s student Kenji Tomiki who started with Aikido training with Morihei Ueshiba on Kano’s advise) sharing a lot more with Judo by including competitive element and even been presented in Kodokan itself and at time seen as a branch of Judo (however, this statement seems too starchy – official randory rules description of the correct rubber knife techniques directed toward allowing good defense vs. permitting realistic attack ).

Yoshinkan Aikido of Gozo Shioda preserving more of the technical properties of old Daito-ryu aiki-jujutsu then some formal jujutsu schools, claiming to be direct descendants, but also using principals of asymmetric warfare and Uke-Tory cooperation.

I would leave history and training in Aikido to Aikido experts. From Judo perspective Aikido technical arsenal is vary valuable (as seen by the fact of Kenji Tomiki commissioning by Dr. Kano to study it) and should be seen as integral part of Judo’s self-defense arsenal.


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