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Thread: Goju Ryu / Aikido Connection

  1. #1
    Yamantaka Guest

    Question Goju Ryu / Aikido Connection

    Hello, all!

    Recently, I found this question in another list :

    "Subject: Takeda connection to Goju Ryu?
    >
    >An Aikido instructor, who also teaches Goju Ryu, said in class once that
    >just about every technique in Aikido can be found in Goju Ryu kata.
    >I was just read an entry on a web site that said Sokaku Takeda, Sensei to
    >Aikido founder Ueshiba, traveled to Okinawa in the 1870's to study Okinawa
    >Te. It does not say who he studied with.
    >I would like to know if anyone knows of any connection between Kanryo
    >Higaonna and Takeda, or has any other information on the Aikido/Goju
    >connections."

    Does anyone knows anything about that?
    Best

  2. #2
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    I can't answer this question but I studied Goju for years before studing Aikido and found some similarities. My Goju teacher sent all his students, Nidan and above, to study Aikido. You may want to pose this question to Stanly Pranin at Aikido Journal, he is porbably one of the foremost scholars of Daito ryu history in the US. I would be very intereseted to here his comments on your question.
    Derrick I. Wallace
    Head & Neck Surgeon
    Muso Shinden Ryu Iaido

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    Hello,

    Although I know 'I believe'-s, 'in my perception'-s etcetera are not what you are looking for, at this moment I can't give you historical data answering your question. I agree that Stan Pranin probably would be the best source at this time. I have heard several remarks made about the relationship between Ueshiba en Chinese martial arts.
    My aikido-teacher, who has been a student of Goju-ryu's Morio Higaonna for years as well, sometimes relates certain techniques of the both arts to eachother. Kuma Franzis also mentions in one of his books that Ueshiba must have studied Chinese martial arts when he was in Mongolia. When I asked Sugano sensei about this assumed link, he very much doubted it to be true. As the roots of Goju-ryu (White Crane) also are to be found in China, maybe technically some assumptions can be made. Historically, again, I have no clue about Takeda's Okinawan visits.

    Christiaan Zandt

  4. #4
    Yamantaka Guest

    Thumbs up THANK YOU!

    Thank you all for the answers so far. I hope they'll keep coming.
    By the way, I have posted this same question at Aikido Journal Bulletin Board and Pranin Sama, if so he wishes, will answer it.
    Best

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    I was able to ask my aforementioned teacher, who at that that moment was in the middle of a struggle with spaghetti-sauce, if he knew of an Okinawan visit by Takeda. He didn't, but promised to ask Higaonna sensei during their next encounter. Furthermore, he remarked that Okinawan te looked a lot like aikido. At that point I left him alone in his kitchen-battle...

    Greetings!
    Christiaan Zandt

    'Heaven is right where you are standing, and that is the place to train' (Morihei Ueshiba)

  6. #6
    Yamantaka Guest

    Unhappy AIKIDO AND KARATE

    Originally posted by Christiaan
    I was able to ask my aforementioned teacher, who at that that moment was in the middle of a struggle with spaghetti-sauce, if he knew of an Okinawan visit by Takeda. He didn't, but promised to ask Higaonna sensei during their next encounter. Furthermore, he remarked that Okinawan te looked a lot like aikido. At that point I left him alone in his kitchen-battle...

    Greetings!
    YAMANTAKA : Don't forget to remember him his promise...
    I'll be anxiously waiting...
    Best

  7. #7
    Dojorat Guest

    Default Aikido - Goju Ryu Connection

    Greetins,

    One of my "main" influential Aikido teachers also taught Okinawan Goju Ryu so the parallels were noted and comparisons were made quite often.

    On page 11 of his book "Abundant Peace, the Biography of Morihei Uyeshiba, Founder of Aikido" John Stevens Sensei writes...

    "In the meantime, the peripatetic Sokaku was off again making the rounds to sharpen his fighting skills. Around 1877, he was reportedly in Kyushu, perhaps hoping to see action in the revolt...
    After running out of opponents in Kyushu, Sokaku made his way to Okinawa, home of 'empty handed combat' thus adding karate to his list of mastered martial arts."

    This certainly preceded any interaction between Takeda and Uyeshiba which I believe began in 1915.

    Furthermore, on page 29, Stevens recounts a time where...
    "[Uyeshiba]...demonstrated his prowess as the King of Protectors by causing powerfully built Mongol warriors to collapse by merely touching them - the ignorant fighters were unaware that he attacked their vital pressure points - word spread that Morihei was a frightful sorcerer. Morihei gave formal instruction to selected military men and also learned a great deal about continental fighting fighting arts in the process."

    So, if that counts as "studying Chinese martial arts" I guess it's true. I have also read (although my recollection of the exact source fails me at this time) that his Mongolian experience(s) diminished Uyeshiba's impressions of the Chinese martial arts.

    Sometimes, I do remember something I read on these three+ shelves of books.

    Cheers,

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    Well let's answer that question! Many people confuse karate as being a harden style. Go(hard) Ju(soft). Softer styles in China which relate more with aikido would be the Chin-na style like tai chi quan. Softer style allow you to blend with your opponent instead of force against force. If you look at the kururunfa kata (Goju Ryu) toward the end of the kata there is an x-block which bares the same similarities as the for corners throw (shiho nage) in aikido. Same as in seiunchin kata has the hand covering the Palm side of the fist implying a wrist lock. Many of the softer styles of martial arts conform together like aikido. I would say study a main style rigorously then when learning another let the idea's and philosophies of that style compliment your original style. Morihei Ueshiba, just like many ancient instructors would compare and share knowledge of different styles to broaden the minds of each other. It would not surprise me that Morihei Ueshiba has met higashionna for Okinawa was a province under the Japanese rule.

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    Don,
    It is a forum rule that all posts contain your FULL NAME.
    At risk of thread necromancy (13 years must be a record!), I would like to add that I read Takeda travelled to Kyushu and had encounters with karate men from Okinawa, but have never heard of Ueshiba learning karate.
    Of course, some of his students also learned karate (Konishi being an example), but my guess is that any similarities between aikido and karate techniques are either coincidental or originate from a common ancestor art or cross-pollination prior to the systems being formalized.
    Andrew Smallacombe

    Aikido Kenshinkai

    JKA Tokorozawa

    Now trotting over a bridge near you!

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    Karate defined as kara(empty) hand(te) hand was the term used to define empty hand fighting hand fighting in which came around the time of the, or during the boxers rebellion. The founder did in fact study some form of karate (empty hand) combat as would have been required when he served in the Japanese Imperial Army, any military force would have required their troops to study empty hand combat just as we do now and even I was required in the Navy. The founder had to have experience in empty hand combat to create such a mystic and beautiful art. I fully and wholeheartedly respect the founder of aikido for he reached a state of enlightenment. In which he has bridged many gaps in any style of karate. And has given many karate practitioners much to ponder upon and allowed people to see karate(empty hand) in a light no one has ever visualized.

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    Hi Don Miguel, and welcome to E-Budo. As was mentioned, all participants on the forums must sign their posts with their full, real name. You can add it as a signature in your profile. Please go to your control panel to edit your profile, and add your full name as a signature. Thank you!
    Cady Goldfield

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    Quote Originally Posted by donmiguelc View Post
    Well let's answer that question! Many people confuse karate as being a harden style. Go(hard) Ju(soft). Softer styles in China which relate more with aikido would be the Chin-na style like tai chi quan. Softer style allow you to blend with your opponent instead of force against force. If you look at the kururunfa kata (Goju Ryu) toward the end of the kata there is an x-block which bares the same similarities as the for corners throw (shiho nage) in aikido. Same as in seiunchin kata has the hand covering the Palm side of the fist implying a wrist lock. Many of the softer styles of martial arts conform together like aikido. I would say study a main style rigorously then when learning another let the idea's and philosophies of that style compliment your original style. Morihei Ueshiba, just like many ancient instructors would compare and share knowledge of different styles to broaden the minds of each other. It would not surprise me that Morihei Ueshiba has met higashionna for Okinawa was a province under the Japanese rule.
    The techniques in Goju Ryu that are sort of quasi similiar to Aikido are not executed like Aikido. However some Goju Ryu people from lines that were not strong on applications may have stole THEIR bunkai from Aikido. Especially here in the West.

    That Goju Ryu Shihonage for example..... tori's arm is wrenched counter clockwise with elbow out totally perpendictular to his body. Tori is not cast out with elbow pointing up in a nice healthy stretch. Uke maintain control and drops Straight down attacking the shoulder joint and maintaining a distance where tori can be pummeled and pounded ... or controlled.
    Ed Boyd

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    I would like to add that karate was not practiced by the Japanese Imperial Army at the time Ueshiba was in service - that would not happen until the 1930s at the Nakano spy school. At that time, the likes of Yabe, Funakoshi and a few others were trying to get it incorporated into the Okinawan school system, or at least out in the open. It would be more than a decade until their demonstration of karate in front of then crown prince Hirohito.
    Unarmed combat in the army would most likely have been boxing and/or judo (or a contemporary jujutsu system)
    Again, there is no reason to believe that Ueshiba was influenced by karate to any degree.
    Andrew Smallacombe

    Aikido Kenshinkai

    JKA Tokorozawa

    Now trotting over a bridge near you!

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    Thanks guys your patience and well detailed information. I sincerely respect aikido and hold great honor and regards to the creator. My instructor Sensei Yosef Mehter of the CNY aikido federation had never explained much about the origins in great detail. Some of the insight I acquired in regards to the history was from learning from others. Thank you again for your patience.

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    Goju ryu as with the other three father styles of karate bear their origins from china. Aikido, judo, etc Japan.

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