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We recommend you initially try viewing the QuickTime clips below.
The AVI- and MPEG4-format clips are somewhat larger and of lower quality.

QuickTime Player: Macintosh | Windows
Windows Media Player: Win/Mac


Aikido practice is cooperative — you practice with various partners during a class, each person alternating as the person initiating the movement (the uke), and the person receiving the movement (the nage). Typically, an instructor will demonstrate a technique to the class, and then the students will practice until the instructor is ready to demonstrate again or do another technique.

instructor clip
Instructor Clip
katatetori ikkyo
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  practice clip
Practice Clip
katatetori ikkyo
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI

Most aikido dojos integrate weapons practice into their classes. A wooden sword (bokken) and and staff (jo) are most frequently used. Weapons are used as training aids, to increase awareness of distance and movement.

tanto clip
(knife technique)
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  jo clip
(staff technique)
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  bokken clip
(sword technique)
(Sakamoto Sensei)
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI

Open-hand techniques, i.e., using no weapons, are what you'll most often see practiced in the dojo. We practice with weapons to better understand the movements and interactions of open-hand techniques.

kotegaeshi clip
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  shihonage clip
Shiho nage
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  kaiten clip
Kaiten nage
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
koshi clip
Koshi nage
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  kokyunage clip
Kokyu nage
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  iriminage clip
Irimi nage
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI

It has been said that randori is "true" aikido, the essence of the art. When we practice, we seek to train our minds and bodies to react properly to unexpected situations. The founder of our art said that aikido is spontaneous and creative, and multiple-person attacks are the test of this.

During randori there is rarely time to do "techniques". Rather we seek to use the basic principles of irimi and tenkan — entering and turning — to neutralize each attack.

The clips below illustrate how we train for and hope to react to such a situation. The video is from a 1986 seminar by Takeguchi sensei at Mt. Pleasant Aikido, in Charleston, SC.

randori1 clip
Randori Practice
(Takeguchi Sensei)
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI
  randori2 clip
(Takeguchi Sensei)
QuickTime | MP4 | AVI

Many aikido dojos and organizations hold seminars during the year, to give their students exposure to other sensei and students, and other ways of practicing aikido. Students also are encouraged to go to seminars at other dojos. Current seminar information is always available at our Seminars, Testing and Events page.

seminar clip   Capital Aikikai 25th Anniversary
For our 25th anniversary we held a three-day seminar and brought in guest instructors and friends from all over the country. This clip shows some of the instructors and what it's like to practice at a large seminar. Most seminars are much smaller, with about 40 or so people in attendance.
Play clip: QuickTime | MP4 | AVI