Aikido is a non-violent art of self-defense and , unlike other martial arts, has no offensive techniques. Aikido teaches people how to calmly accept and control an attack rather than to react violently to a violent situation. An attack can be looked at as an extension of energy toward a person; an outpouring of a force with violent intent. In Aikido, force is never met with force, but with a gentle blending of our energy with the energy of the attacker.

 

The meaning of the word "Aikido" is a good example of this approach to self-defense. The word Aikido is made up of three characters:


the first character is "AI", which means to blend or to harmonize;

 


the second character is "KI", which is dynamic energy or the energy of nature;

 


and the last character is "DO", which means a way of doing things or a path through life.



Thus, the word Aikido means "a way of life through harmony with nature".

Aikido was founded by Morehei Ueshiba, a renowned martial artist of his time. Master Ueshiba redefined the martial code of budo, which was based on strength and brutality, into a martial way, which is based on the principle of harmony with the Ki of the universe, oneself and the principle of loving protection for all things.

While Aikido is an art of self-defense, we must keep in mind that the main purpose of training Aikido is to carry the principles of harmony and non-violence into our daily life.