The aikido we do is the most original and widely practised style which is called Aikikai Aikido. This style was spread all over the world by the students of the founder of aikido. Subsequently, aikido has been developed further by a second generation of students.
One of these students, who eventually became a member of the technical committee in Japan, is Masatomi Ikeda shihan. He developed a didactic system to teach and learn Aikikai Aikido. His system is called Sanshinkai Aikido and is – as you might have guessed it – used at Sanshinkai Aikido Utrecht.
Freely translated, Sanshinkai means the unification of three hearts. In this system different disciplines are joined to in three pillars. The first and most import pillar is Aikikai Aikido. The second pillar the hojo kata. This is part of the 500 year old Japanese sword fighting tradition Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryū.
The third pillar is called genkikai and encompasses a selection of health exercises from five disciplines such as yoga and meditation. Some exercises are more than 2,500 years old while others have been recently developed.
The system is constructed in such way that all parts are based on the same principles. The hojo kata is very appropriate to develop amongt other things correct posture, concentration, breathing, balance and timing. Genkikai is mainly to recover from intensive training and inner reflection. Aikido has become richer by the addition of these exercises and the practioner unfolds step by step deeper insights in his or her aikido.
For almost 40 years, Masatomi Ikeda shihan thought aikido in Europa aikido and is now retired in Japan. His students such as Michele Quaranta and Francesco Marrella – meanwhile each 7th dan and shihan – continue his work. We work additionally with fourth generation teachers such as Eric Graf from Switzerland and Miroslav Šmíd from the Czech Republic who both hold the 5th dan.
Sanshinkai Aikdo Utrecht is currently the only group in the Netherlands who teaches the system of Sanshinkai Aikido integrally. Sanshinkai Aikido is not a certain style but a broader approach to Aikikai Aikido. All exams and promotions in Sanshinkai Aikido have been awarded and registered by the headquarters of the international Aikikai Aikido organisation in Tokyo.