How does Aikido correlate with the other Martial Arts? 

The Martials Arts for centuries had the common purpose - to protect people. The aim of the several Martial Arts of the East is to facilitate the Peace and Harmony. Aikido continues this tradition and sees it as it`s main goal.  


If Aikido is not agression, why the throws and armlocks are practiced?

It is not correct to define Aikido as agressive or passive - it is an acquirement and maintaining of the Harmony. The Great Humanist Mahathma Gandhi is reported as saying that "Akhimsa (causing no harm) - is not a negative condition of the harmlessness, but a positive condition of doing good". A throw or an armlock in Aikido has an aim to preserve from the harmful action, not to demonstrate your supremacy.   


Different teachers teach the different way. What way is correct?

Different teachers have the different perception of the Aikido. This creates the difference in teaching - this is an interaction; the external look of the techniques is not important, it is important to find a teacher with whom you will feel the mutual trust. This is the only way to reach the serious results.


What is the correct way to behave in the Dojo?

The Dojo should be stepped in with the open mind, full of respect. The Dojo shpould be cleaned and taken care of. The difference between students should be respected as well as you should fully devote yourself to the practice. There are also the rules of the behavior in the Dojo - "Rayshiki" ( the etiquette of the Martial Arts practitioner ). You should enquire about the content from your instructor accordingly. 


How many power should I put in my attack of the opponent?

When you begin practice it is important to use your body the way not to make harm to the partner and yourself. After the practitioners will increase their experience and trust to each other much effort can be used. The Aikido practitioners at all time should take the abilities of the partners into consideration - in fact it is a training of the sensitivity.     


Can the falls make harm to me?

Having begun practiced Aikido people first learn how to fall and make ukemi. This gives confidence. Both the attacking and the defending learn the movements of Aikido together, there is no struggle between them. In fact - "not move" is the way to absorb the full throw of the opponent`s throw or the armlock. The beginners learn to increase their energy and produce the perfect technique through the movements allowing to take over the opponent using his own power and to secure themselves from the damage.       


What is the "Ki"?

 Ki is the Universal Energy infusing the World. Our personal Ki is a part of the Universal Ki and there is a permanent exchange in between. This is the essence of life. When the Ki flow is strong and unimpeded - we are strong and healthy. Jams and obstacles on it`s way relusts in sickness. Temporary stop of the Ki results in the loss of conciousness. If the Ki flow stops and not reinstates it results in death. That is why the "Ki" term underlies the Aikido concept. Once you can feel the the energy outcoming the hands you can increase the speed and power multiply, what will allow you to tackle any opponent. Once the practice is carried out by the experienced instructor, you will feel Ki from the first practice.


Is it obligatory to take the examinations?

Almost all the budo ( Martial Arst ) schools have the grades, assigned by the Master to the student he had discovered the secrets and found decent. In Aikido the Founder had initially ( in 1931 ) established the Dan grades ( from 1st to 8th ). After the War the highest rank - the 9th Dan - was implemented. The 10th Dan alos exists, but it can only be assigned postmortem. The increasing number of the practitioners had necessitated the implementation of the Kyu student`s grades ( from 5th to 1st for the adults and from 10th to 1st for the children ) for those who had not yet acquired the profficiency according to the Dan mastership grades. This was done, first of all, to allow the practitioners themself to estimate the level of their masterhip reached. Any person, even with a significant lack of talent for the Martial Arts can reach the amazing results. The examinations show the point you are currently are at. The Aikido Examinations are not a competition with a partner, but an overcoming of the own weaknesses and the enforcement of the spirit. Like the alpinists we are climbink the peak of Mastership, helping each other.


How long should I practice to deserve the "black belt"?

There are 5 levels of the student Kyu grades and 9 levels of the Dan "black belt" grades. The first level - 5th Kyu - can be reached after 3-4 month. The promotion from the 5th Kyu to the first gradation of the "black belt" ( called "Shodan" ) may take about 4 or more years - this depends on your diligence. Hovewer the key issue in Aikido is not the grade reached, but the permanent practice continuation targeting the constant self-improvement. The detailed information about the hierarchy of the grades, terms and requirements for the examinations, which may differ depending on the style and organization, can be learned from your Instructor.    

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