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Weapons training enhances our understanding of timing, balance, intuition, body positioning, distancing and the consequences of careless and aggressive behavior. Practicing with weapons also increases concentration, alertness, precision, and decisiveness.
At Newport Beach Aikido, we are very fortunate to have trained under the master swordsman, Seichii Sugano Shihan. The late Sugano Shihan was from a nearly lost generation (only a few are left) of key uchi deshi (live-in-student) who studied daily and directly with the founder of aikido Morihei Ueshiba otherwise known respectfully as O-Sensei to aikidokas worldwide. As part of his training with O-Sensei, Sugano Shihan studied weapons and particularly with the bokken. Unfortunately, O-Sensei never established a systematic way of practicing with the sword. Sugano Shihan was a master swordsman and, like the rest of his aikido technique, known for his power and speed and uncanny sense of timing.
Even as Sugano Shihan worked to create a systematic approach to practice with the sword, his instruction had always remained incredibly dynamic and constantly evolving. Sugano Shihan’s weapons instruction was organic and free from a any kind of formal kata.
At our Shin Do Kan dojo (where Sugano Shihan would teach twice a year), he would pair off the students and have them practice basic sword patterns with the bokken designed to develop correct body positioning (hanmi), timing, and increased awareness of distance.
There five fundamental patterns (icho no ken, ni no ken, san no ken, yon no ken, and go no ken) presented over the course of two volumes (taped several years apart). These fundamental patterns along with endless combinations are taught by Gentil Pennewaert Shihan at Newport Beach Aikido. Pennewaert Shihan has evolved the weapons training to help his students respond naturally with full awareness of timing, distance and direction.
We are proud to offer weapons training at Newport Beach Aikido as part of our learning curriculum every week during the adult classes. Students will find that working with the tanto, jo, and bokken will help them enhance their understanding of aikido and develop their aikido skills with better timing, distance, and direction. (During the Covid period, all classes are weapons based for safe social distancing and we will be focusing primarily on the bokken and jo lessons).
Weapons training is integral to the understanding and development of aikido. We must evolve and continue to improve our timing, distance, and direction as the basics of all weapons training.
“Newport Beach Aikido is a great place to come and learn in a very family friendly environment. The class is very traditional and great for any skill level. My two sons (9 and 7) are in kids class and they also enjoy the learning in well disciplined practice. I personally enjoy Aikido to train my inner-core strength while learning fundamental self-defense skill. Sensei is very kind, patient, and professional. Highly recommended if you are looking for a dojo that offers both high-level spirits and respectful camaraderies!”
“I am so fortunate to have found Newport Beach Aikido-Shin Do Kan Dojo and Sensei Pennewaert both for myself and for my family. The adult classes provide a lot more than mere instruction in the techniques and skills of aikido. For me they also bring harmony and coordination between body and mind and are the source of new energy that always leaves me recharged and looking forward to the next class.”
Sensei Pennewaert does an amazing job! I have been training for my entire adult life and we recently had Sensei out for a seminar and he was truly amazing. His knowledge, teaching style, and through understanding of his art allow him to connect with you and your students. We hope his schedule will allow him to visit us annually. If he is near your town do yourself and your students a favor and get there. It will be time well spent.
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2018 Quail Street , Newport Beach, CA 92660