Aiki budō is Ishi Yama's dynamic approach to aikidō, whose origins date back to north-central Japan in the 10th century. Aikidō's more recent mid-20th century iteration stems from Gozo Shioda, an exemplary individual of the inner circle of modern aikidō’s founder Morihei Ueshiba, whose 'Yoshinkan' style of aikidō became the chosen arrest and control technique of the Tokyo police force.
The practice of aiki budō focuses on proper breathing, specific postures, and active paired training exercises, bringing each person through a process which turns casual movement into an artful expression of dynamic and highly effective personal protection techniques. It develops great conditioning and intuitive perception, providing a path for personal empowerment and development of a rational mind conscious of right thinking followed by right action.
Tai sabaki, or "body movement," consists of a series of basic exercises practiced individually. These exercises focus on breathing, footwork, and the movement of the body as a single, connected unit. They are the first step in understanding how to move dynamically without wasted action and how to direct one's own energy and momentum to facilitate that movement. In Ishi Yama, instruction in tai sabaki is in the form of warm-up exercises conducted prior to engaging in other techniques.
ARREST AND CONTROL TECHNIQUES
Shioda’s famous quote – “Focus all your energy to one point” – serves as a guiding principle for the arrest and control techniques practiced within Ishi Yama. These techniques teach the student how to redirect an opponent, manipulating the momentum of the movement to off-balance the opponent and assume control of the situation by using the "one point" principle. Both partners experience offensive and defensive roles.
In the context of Ishi Yama, randori refers to a form of free sparring, where a designated person defends against multiple opponents coming from multiple directions. The attacks are executed in quick succession, with the defender having to respond to them at a reaction rate. This exercise puts the arrest and control techniques the student has learned into action in a dynamic exchange that simulates the fast pace of a real-life encounter, fine-tuning the response time of the student.