In my experience, Aikido can help students in several ways no matter their age. At least the following apply:


For School-age Children

Aikido practice reduces fear. This applies to interaction with family, problematic fellow students, and with the challenges of deadlines, testing, and concern for the future. If you face the future with martial intensity but a dedication to nonviolence, then option multiply and you are in balance and ready to respond when opportunities arise.

Aikido raises expectations. It can help to focus their learning process when students borrow martial ideas and pratices and apply them to their education. Aikido is learned in a dojo, which is an ordered environment entirely dedicated to one purpose--martial development. If the student approaches their learning in the classroom as though they were in a dojo, with special time set aside, rituals of beginning and ending, as though their future is at stake, then their learning process will shift in the direction of dedication and measurable increases in not only knowledge but also the ability to learn. In this way their interest in school grows with their skill, and they learn to shape their enviroment in order to support the particular learning they need.

Aikido turns a clear learning process into a habit. When you watch an art form done well, and then attempt to repeat what you have seen, and then bear responsibility for passing it on to others, you expect these phases in each future learning experience and help make the process happen. This deepens your understanding and refines your learning.


For young-adults in high school and at university


University of California - Berkeley


University of Chicago


University of Texas


Stanford University


For seniors and those with health concerns


Hisateru Ishikawa, a Free Aiki Dojo student who began training with us at 68 years of age, suggests that he studies aikido "to learn to walk with good balance; to fall and not be injured; to learn how to learn again and again and keep the mind quick."