About Aikido

Some of the exercises and principles in my workshops are borrowed from the peaceful martial art of Aikido – the “way of harmony.” These exercises help us to get centered, reconnect with our bodies, and relate to conflict and circumstances in a more relaxed, positive, constructive way. Aikido is non-competitive and non-violent. Training partners work together cooperatively. The underlying philosophy is to flow with what’s actually happening so we can find a harmonious outcome for all involved.

Linda Eskin throwing her partner in an Aikido technique called jo nage - a throw using a wooden staff.

Aikido practitioners worldwide work to promote peace, teach non-violent conflict resolution, and help people discover and develop themselves. You can learn more about some of these programs at Aiki-Extensions.

Falling & Rolling for Fitness

Learning to get to the ground safely, roll, and get back up again is not only fun (and a good idea), it’s also a great workout! In bodyweight training on the mat you’ll learn the graceful front and back rolls from Aikido, crawling, rocking, and other groundwork. It’s a blast to do, great cardio, and surprisingly solid core workout.

“It comes down to efficiency, or lack of it. You see, fat-loss exercise has to be inefficient.

There’s a simple way to rediscover the joys and sorrows of inefficiency, and it’s literally at your feet: the ground. If you get on the ground and then get off the ground, you’ll stimulate a lot of fat loss. It’s really quite surprising.”

~ Dan John, Strength Coach, from “Before We Go – An Ongoing Philosophy of Lifting, Living, and Learning.”

Fall Recovery Skills

In special workshops you will learn not just to fall avoidance, but also skills needed to get down onto the floor and up again. These programs incorporate experiences designed to help participants become more comfortable with the idea of being on the ground. You will also learn to develop core strength, balance, and practical strategies to avoid falls – a common source of major injuries among seniors. If you are a senior, or are hoping to be one someday, these skills are good ones to develop and practice.

“… if Phil Maffetone is correct and 28,000 Americans a year die from falls or fall-related injuries, we should stop being so paranoid about peanut butter and focus more on tumbling.”

~ Dan John, Strength Coach, from “Before We Go – An Ongoing Philosophy of Lifting, Living, and Learning.”

Practicing Aikido

Although aspects of Aikido are included in my fitness work, I do not offer Aikido classes or martial arts training. If you are  interested in training in Aikido you can visit a local dojo (training hall) to observe a class and speak with the teacher and students about whether Aikido is right for you. Most dojos welcome observers. A phone call beforehand is usually appreciated.

If you are in Aikido in the San Diego area I highly recommend Aikido of San Diego, where I train. Aikido of San Diego is a long-standing community of dedicated students led by teacher Dave Goldberg Sensei, 5th Dan (5th degree black belt).

If you’re in another city, you can use this online dojo search tool on AikiWeb – a popular international Aikido discussion forum – to find Aikido dojos anywhere in the world.


Photo: Linda Eskin throwing her partner in an Aikido technique called jo nage – a throw using a wooden staff. Photo by C.K. of http://distant-ocean.net/ © 2014

 

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