Aikido with Iaido and/or Kendo

Spinedoc

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Hi all,

I'm curious as to others experiences, and what you might be willing to share.

I've been practicing Aikido for about 1.5 years now. Doing well, and advancing with both open hand and weapons (actually getting pretty good at the paired 31 jo kumi). My flexibility has increased dramatically, my balance and movement has been improved, and I am looking to expand my training.

To this end, I am starting the study of Muso Shinden Ryu/Setei Iaido tomorrow (dojo teaches both), and have even contemplated adding Kendo at some point as well.

My question is, for those that have been doing this, and have mixed Aikido with sword arts, what benefits have you found? Did it complement your aikido? Or did it complicate it? I'm legitimately curious as to what you have found in your studies.

Respectfully,

Mike
 

Ken Morgan

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I practice Iaido and Jodo.
My Sensei practices Iaido, Jodo, Niten, Aikido and various other arts, and has for 30 years. He has always said that they are all the same, that they all compliment each other.
 

pgsmith

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Hey Mike,
It has been my experience that aikido and sword arts are quite complimentary. As Ken has said, iaido, jodo, aikido, jujutsu, kendo are all complimentary because they come from the same roots in feudal Japan. I've seen folks that were experienced in other arts such as karate, muai tai, etc ... have issues with the Japanese sword arts because the base movements and core ideas are different.
Once you begin getting better at iaido, you'll have to consciously separate any aikiken you do as the approach is different, and you can hurt your fellow practitioners if you cut in aikiken the same way you do in iaido. That's what I found anyway.
 
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Spinedoc

Spinedoc

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Well, it was only one class, but I definitely can see both substantial similarities and differences.

Similarities: Focus on balance, centering, extension, and form-Kamae, as well as Zanshin.

Differences: Grip, stance-hamni, linear vs circular approach, cuts are different from aiki-ken, mindset-not only zanshin, but a preparedness to either kill or be killed.

For now, I am going to have to keep them completely separate in my brain. Adopt an attitude of Shoshin. I'm excited, and look forward to learning more.

Mike
 

oftheherd1

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I have never studied Aikido, so you should first listen to those who do. But years ago, I was told that Aikido was a very much a defense against the other MA, and many to most techniques started with defense against the sword.
 
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