Author: Dan James

Dan has been studying aikidō since his graduate student days. He considers his aikidō journey as a holistic practice of eastern traditions, drawing on insights from the western sciences to better understand the art. He is a long time supporter of Aikido in Sydney.
Fiddler Dan Violins and Workshop

Aiki insights: learning an instrument

I’ve enjoyed learning aikidō for over 25 years so far. It’s a fascinating art, filled with intellectual and experiential joy. I continue to be intrigued by the subtle nuances, the quest for perfection and the creative space afforded by taninzūgake (free practice with one or more training partners). Lately I’ve returned to the violin, which I played as a younger man. As I… Read more →

Keyboard warrior

I’m currently learning to type and realising it’s a great analog for learning in the dojo. I’ve been typing for a long time, mostly with two fingers, and wanted to take my skills to the next level. It’s been tough because there is so much unlearning to do. Daily activities involve lots of repetitive mechanical drills to bed in a… Read more →

No-touch aikido, yes it’s real!

This month Sensei is focusing on the kokyu (breath power) techniques of aikido. These are techniques that, at the highest levels, do not require physical contact with your training partner (or assailant). Kokyunage, one of the six pillars of aikido, is one of the more famous categories of aikido techniques and comes under intense scrutiny, particularly from other martial arts.… Read more →

A question of Style

There are today almost as many styles of aikido as there are other martial arts. And the variation between styles can seem quite large, so much so that many ask: what is the real aikido? It seems every dojo you visit claims to be doing the most authentic aikido. It all came about because the founder of aikido developed his art… Read more →