Through the harmony and balance of circular blending movements, Aikido aims to unite the spirit and body of each practitioner. The achievement of this goal can be accomplished only through the accumulation of the experience gained through sincere daily practice. Since aikido has as its base the rigorous strictness of the traditional martial arts of Japan, each technique includes all the elements of offense and defense.
Aikido developed from Japanese Bujutsu (“warrior skills”) which emerged over a thousand years ago. Master Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969), founder of Aikido, studied various bujutsu, including Kito-ryu, Yagyu-ryu and Daito-ryu jujutsu, mastering the secrets of each. He also trained himself under Onisaburo Deguchi, an outstanding religious leader of his time. Known to his followers with reverent affection as O'Sensei, Ueshiba began teaching in a dojo near Kyoto and named his art Aiki Budo. He later moved to Tokyo, establishing what became the Headquarters Dojo.
In 1942, the name of the art was changed to Aikido. After World War II, O'Sensei’s Aikido spread rapidly through the international martial art community, establishing itself in the United States in the early 1960s. When O'Sensei died in 1969, his son Kisshomaru became Doshu (Master) succeeding his father in the traditional Japanese manner. Upon the death of Ueshiba Kisshomaru Sensei in early 1999, his son Moriteru has assumed the title Doshu, becoming the third member of the family to lead the Aikido community.