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Monday, December 18, 2017

The Shodokan Style

shodokan logo largeShodokan Aikido is a style developed by Kenji Tomiki and in reference to him often also referred to as Tomiki Aikido. Unlike most other styles it includes a competition element, because Tomiki believed that competing would more than anything else provide feedback about how well their techniques actually work.

Sensei Tomiki selected 17 techniques which he considered effective as well as safe in competition. These are the core techniques of Shodokan Aikido. Other techniques are part of various advanced kata, like Koryu Goshin no Kata (Old stream self defense kata) or Goshin Ho (this kata is part of the curriculum for 4th Dan) and are usually practiced at higher levels.

There are three kinds of competition in Shodokan Aikido:

Tanto randori

This style has a designated attacker using a tanto (knife) and an empty-handed defender. The attacker tries to stab the defender with the tanto (of course a rubber or stuffed training knife is used to avoid injuries) and the defender tries to appy any of the 17 basic techniques. Successfully applied techniques attract points as do successful stabs to the torso of the defender. After a defined time roles are reversed and the scores from both roles are added up to the final score which determines who wins the match.

Toshu randori

In this form both competitors are empty handed and there are no designated roles. Techniques are limited to the 17 basic techniques. Unlike in Judo, wrestling without at least a visible attempt to apply one of the 17 basic techniques results in a penalty (points given to the opponent).

Embu

This is a competition of form and style and unlike the two other styles is not a fight between two opponents. Rather pairs of competitors perform katas and are awarded points for how well the techniques are demonstrated.

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Dojo Address:
North Ryde RSL Youth Club
Cnr Magdala Rd & Pittwater Rd
North Ryde
NSW 2113

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