Here’s the National Geographic Special about aikido.
The show is about a woman’s trip to Japan to get a deeper understanding of budo — the way of the warrior. She had been training in aikido for about 25 years when she went to Japan.
There’s really not that much aikido in this show. But there are some thing of interest that can make watching it worthwhile. She visits Iwama, the home of Saito Sensei, and learns some etiquette lessons. Saito Sensei is depicted as quite the taskmaster. Being a live-in student there (uchideshi) is portrayed as harsh. This is not at all the feeling at the dojos where I’ve trained, particularly Aikido’Ka.
The woman visits Shingu, where Hikitsuchi Sensei (10th dan) taught. Hikitsuchi Sensei died in 2004. Anno Sensei is chief instructor there now, I believe. Jack Wada Sensei, Linda Holliday Sensei and Mary Heiny Sensei all trained there together. I will soon post an interview I did with Jack Wada Sensei.
She also visits Hombu Dojo, the aikido’s worldwide headquarters. She meets and gets to train with Doshu, the founder’s grandson. Doshu is the leader of aikido worldwide.
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