The paradox of Aikido is that while remaining a very potent style of combat, it stresses non-violence. Less concerned with winning or losing, we seek to end conflict and remain undefeated. Knowledge and skill in Aikido build self-confidence and self-respect without causing egotistical behavior. When you feel more secure, you are less inclined to show off. You are less inclined to over- or under-react. This calm proficiency seems to emanate from you. It has a quieting effect on your personality and on those around you. Because you are not provocative, others are not either. A less selfish, more harmonious, and balanced pattern of behavior develops.
There is also an emphasis on positive thinking and a concentration of energy. Your total being (mind, body, and spirit) is made to work in the most efficient and effective manner possible. This focus on total mind/body coordination allows us to overcome size, age, and strength limitations. It is also a major factor in reducing stress – particularly when under verbal or physical attack.
We Aikido practitioners are seeking self-improvement and self-perfection. We know it is an impossible task, but the challenge intrigues us. You have to make the journey yourself to understand what we do.