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Thread: Aikido reccomendation

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    Default Aikido reccomendation

    I'm wondering what book you would recommend for one just starting out in aikido? I'm interested in history as well as explaining training and basics. Thanks
    Frank Ferrara
    The mind is like a parachute-it only works when it is open

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    Hello,

    When I started out, I found Westbrook and Ratti's Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere. Then I picked up a copy of Aikido, by Kisshomaru Ueshiba. One of the ukes in the photographs was later my own teacher. Later still I saw a two-volume book written by the present Doshu, Moriteru Ueshiba. I think the English title is Best Aikido, but I read it in Japanese. After you have spent time training, you will probably find books of limited value. One of my teachers, also taught by Morihei Ueshiba himself, asked us, "Why do you need to read books? I am your model." Another book is Aikido and the Harmony of Nature, by Mitsugi Saotome. If your teacher has trained in Iwama, he or she might recommend the multi-volume Traditional Aikido, by Morihiro Saito.

    Best wishes,
    Peter Goldsbury
    Hiroshima, Japan

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    Books are the serpents in the Garden of Eden.

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    Thanks for the info, appreciate it.
    Frank Ferrara
    The mind is like a parachute-it only works when it is open

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    Just a few thoughts:
    Gaku Homma's Aikido For Life is easy to follow and you might even get some exercises out of it that you can do on your own.
    For me at least aikido techniques are harder to follow in a book than say judo or karate.
    John Stevens has some history books but be warned they are definitely from the perspective of almost worshiping OSensei.
    Robert Twigger's Angery White Pajamas is a good read even if your not into aikido, but I hope where he talks about his reaction to Shioda Sensei's death it is just artistic license otherwise I don't think much of Mr. Twigger as a person.
    Tohei's Ki in Daily Life is interesting.
    One of the best sources for history is Chis Li's website.
    He has some books in Japanese for download, I cannot read them but they have some good pictures.
    It all depends on you.
    If you want more depth about your style of aikido ask your teacher about his lineage and select books from that lineage.
    If you want breadth go for other lineages.
    If you use Japanese vocabulary in class books can be extremely helpful both for remembering the terms and to develop more understanding of their nuances.
    Bottom line is there are a huge number of aikido books so as long as you don't read instead of train see what your library has.
    Len McCoy

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