Aikido is a Budo. All Budo have the same pinnacle, with each having a different, yet similar process or path towards attaining it. Through competition, artificial limitations are provided for instant advancement: rules, weight divisions, age groups, male or female, contact or non-contact and/or point scoring systems are promoted.
Aikido perhaps differs most from other Budo for example Karate-do, Judo and Kendo in that it is non-competitive (has no competitions or point scoring). There are many reasons for this, including that many techniques in Aikido if applied over-zealously, forcefully and/or unmercifully would seriously injure and/or disable an opponent. Basic Aikido immobilisation techniques for example are illegal in modern Judo.
These three characters in Japanese kanji represent the concepts that form Ai-Ki-Do.
- a non-competitive, Japanese martial art
- popular with men and women of all ages
- an avenue to better health, fitness and well-being
- developing technique, mind and body
- not reliant on strength
- based on circular and free-flowing movements
- breathing development and stress relief
- regular exercise
- good discipline
- improved flexibility
- perspective development
- improved posture and deportment
- improved coordination and balance