There are currently openings for Adult and Children students. Interested candidates are invited to observe a class. The dojo is co-located with the Toledo Zen Center at 6537 Angola Road Holland, OH 43558

Aikido is a non-competitive martial art that can be practiced by almost anyone. Aikido techniques do not rely on physical strength but rather develops relaxed power through the focus of intention and Ki. The result is a creative method of non-destructive conflict resolution.

Aikido is practiced on many levels. The first level is includes the development of stamina, flexibility, and learning how to focus one's intention. The second level is built on the first and stresses self-defense techniques that teach the natural order of movement. In this process the students also become adept at ukemi, the art of rolling, falling and protecting oneself. Aikido provides the opportunity for the development of the entire person. It is a workout of the entire body and mind and results in increased strength, overall physically fitness, flexibility and centeredness.

At the third level students are gradually introduced to the secrets of receiving and harnessing the power of ki, they also develop spatial awareness and learn to judge proper timing and distance. During this training the goal is to establish and maintain an energetic connection to your partner and to lead them off balance. This eliminates the need for more destructive means of resolving situations.

The highest level of aikido is mind over matter. This involves the use of visualization techniques, the power of intention and ki, breath control and meditation. Aikido is truly a spiritual martial art that explores themind - body - spirit connection. This advanced level of training at Shobu Aikido reaches a level not easily found elsewhere. The student learns how to manifest power and effectiveness by the focusing of intention alone. This level depends on and can only be reached through the refinement of technique and the students own deepest feeling. For this reason it alternates between the physical and the spiritual.

In the process of practicing aikido, students inevitably find themselves less stressed and more energetic, better equipped to manage life's many conflicts with calm control. Aikido is great for adults and kids alike because practice encourages respect for self and others, self control, cooperation and responsibility.

Gasshuku or weekend long intensive seminars with William Gleason Sensei are available seasonally.

Children's aikido classes provide a friendly, non-competitive environment for students to become more physically fit, agile, flexible, aware, focused, and relaxed. They learn how to safely fall, roll and perform a variety of self-defense techniques in a supportive, comfortable setting, and parents like Aikido because kids learn how to be powerful without becoming destructive.

My Martial Journey

Hey All,

Tonight’s class was led by Danny Kline Sempai. It was an examination of kokyu nage (breath throws). It is interesting as the season changes outside comes a different feeling in the body when working on kihon (basic technics) in class. Kokyu nage depends so much on bringing in Uke’s ki and getting uke’s ki to rise. This is easier said than done which I continued to discover tonight. I was also examining how to redirect uke’s energy with a ryote tori (two hand) grab. Sempai did a good job in showing where kokyu shows up in various technics.

Kokyu nage for me, as far as the physical side of Aikido goes, seems the most esoteric and difficult aspect of the art to examine. There is always such a narrow channel of movement that needs to be traversed for the technic to work. What it has developed or should I say continues to develop in me is timing, a sensitivity to uke’s intent and ki sensitivity. But to achieve this awareness I have to remain relaxed, calm and that is not always easy if someone is coming to get you with a lot of energy. Also, so much of kokyu has to do with expansion and ki extension. Sempai was saying one should visualize extending the ki two or 3 feet beyond your arms and hands. That REALLY helped me to understand the dynamic aspect of kokyu throws. There needs to be a dynamic quality to the throw. Collapsing the body is what you absolutely do not want to do when an attack or conflict is coming your way. You meet it, digest it, and then move. Kokyu technics can be found in all Aikido technics and I think that is what I most got out of class tonight. It goes back to an earlier entry where I talked about the difficulty of unbalancing uke. If this unbalancing aspect is not in place then kokyu nage will be ineffective. The kokyu challenge is that nage (receiver) really gets one chance at that initial moment of connection to make this unbalancing happen. However, with Aikido if the unbalancing does not happen one can transition into another technic.

It was a good class. I speak for my fellow Aikidoka at Shobu Aikido in saying that our thoughts and prayers are with Isabella, Jay Sensei, and Karen during this time of transition.


The Maestro

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