Multiple Descriptions of the Same Technique

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When I first started Aikido, I often had issues trying to understand what my instructors were describing, and even more issues trying to accomplish what they were saying.  Pull with your front foot, extend your arm without moving and body drop, do not always mean the same thing to different people. The vocabulary used to… Read more »

Who I Am

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Identity is a curious thing. We think it was created by ourselves and that we control our identity. Do we really? My experiences with the people I love are what have shaped who I am. It is not limited to Aikido, but some of the people I care about most are in Aikido. The people… Read more »

Teaching Young Aikidoka

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Explaining what I have experienced through teaching Aikido must begin and end respectfully with my deepest gratitude to my own Sensei. I teach what I have learned from her. Every happy success I achieve in teaching is my Sensei’s success. As all great wisdom may be imparted with laughter, my Sensei has shared many laughs… Read more »

Just Take the Fall

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Submitted for Shodan Examination, July 2018 As everyone who practices aikido knows, it quite literally has its ups and downs, and ups and downs. In Tomiki Aikido falling is one of the most important skills to develop. When I first started studying Tomiki Aikido I absolutely hated the falling aspect, mainly because I spent so… Read more »

The Basics

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Dennis Bandiero, Tomiki Aikido Raleigh SHODAN ESSAY “You can always count on Americans to do the right thing – after they’ve tried everything else.” (Winston Churchill) Aikidoka, and really any martial artist, hear the same lexicon of fundamentals repeatedly in their formative years, whether politely suggested, shouted, or served with a side of eye -roll…. Read more »

Professor Tomiki and kenkyuu (research)

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Recently Bob Dziubla Sensei gave me the opportunity to digitize his personal copy of an out of print book Professor Tomiki wrote in 1956. The work is called Judo and Aikido, and it was written as a basic introduction to these two arts from a sport perspective.  From the outset, Professor Tomiki makes it very… Read more »

An Introspective Study of Kuzushi no Ri

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On my journey with Aikido over the past few years I have discovered a structural strength that I never imagined could be reached by a 5’2″ woman who’s a hundred pounds soaking wet. I have developed footwork and speed that emphasizes my natural strength. Even my understanding of the nebulous concept of connection has drastically… Read more »

REPORT: US Nationals, July 26-29

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Mesa College in San Diego, California, played host to the TAA US Nationals this past July. With about forty-five players assembled from across the country, it was three days of workshops, competition and celebration. Thursday night, many of the participants met in the Mesa College gymnasium to lay down tatami and mark out the competition… Read more »