At MIT School, teaching aikido is part of the compulsory curriculum. In this section you will learn more about this ancient art thanks to our Aikido teacher, Antonio Quero:


What is aikido?

Aikido is a system derived from the martial traditions of Japan, based on communication and creativity. It gives paramount importance to the spiritual development of the individual and to the social responsibility.


The Japanese warrior, the samurai, used to follow a training program involving a code of ethics: Bushidô (the Way of the Knight). In combat, the ethical level can be summarized in four levels:


  • 1st level: A skilled fighter, without provocation, attacks and kills another. Ethically is the lowest level.

  • 2nd level: A warrior tempts another so that they fight, but having the first a higher technical background, he annihilates it. There is an incitement to cause aggression and perhaps, to justify the action, arguing that he was attacked first. Ethically, there is little difference with the first.

  • 3rd level: A warrior is attacked without he attacking first or provoking the attack; he defends himself and kills or seriously wound his adversary. Ethically, this is a more defensible action than the previous two; however, his own defense ends with the destruction of another man. In the first three levels the result is the same: a man gets killed.

  • 4th level: Without attacking or provoking an attack, a samurai defendes with such skill and control that the attacker is not dead and not even seriously injured.

This last, and highest ethical level, is the goal of all aikido self-defense techniques. Reaching this self-control requires technical skills, but it takes more than that. Ethical intention is required. A man should want to sincerely defend himself without hurting others, looking for an integration of mind, body and ethical reasons.

Is it possible to get hurt while practicing aikido?

Aikido teaches us to take care of all our partners to lower the level of each and to require no more than they can give, nor give more than they can receive.Thus, in the practice of Aikido, the percentage of injury is minimal, being in much higher in other sports, like football.

  It is normal in a fall, a dislocation or a projection to feel some initial pain or discomfort, but being released by fellow dissipates this discomfort. For this there are rules in which the opposite (uke) can call, with a clap, to the one who makes the technique (tori) in order to making him stop: the partner is released then.   It is necessary, first, to respect the partner; also, to follow precisely the advice of the Professor and implement the fundamental “confidence”, essential for practice, as there are moments when the partner leaves “his body” with whole “trust” to the opponent for him to practice and experience; afterwards, it will be the opposite.   If instead of being relaxed, the student is tight and strong, if instead of practicing with his partner he tries to be measured, showing resistance in the execution of the technique, surely there is a higher chance of injury. Therefore, the etiquette, respect and courtesy and the rules of the Dojo are not empty formalities, but are used to create prerequisites for a good workout.


Students are an aikido teacher’s priority. He watches over their welfare and provides a link with other teachers. Part of the work of Aikido is therapeutic, in its different contexts. Aikido lays in the physical line (technical) and spiritual (religion, philosophy, energy, etc.). Aikido teaches to be alert to the various challenges of life, to face them and even to find a better way to help others.

Aikido goals

  • Learn
  • Have self esteem
  • Be stronger
  • Acquire great skills
  • Dominate events
  • Fluent attitude decision
  • Prevent eventualities
  • Understand the interior and the exterior
  • Control the situation
  • Power…
  • But, what’s the goal of power?
  • The goal of power is power.
  • Then, let’s sum up this all:
  • The aim of practice… is practice.

  Written by F.Noel, 7th Dan Aikikai

Age to practice Aikido

Aikido is recommended for children from four years old. In this age, the concepts of inner peace, relaxation or defense do not make much sense, so the objectives we work in classes are those that are geared to provide spaces through various situations, within a fun and dynamic climate, to explore and develop their full potential physically, mentally and socially. It’s like raising a foundation or pillars to build a building, if the pillars are good and firm will build a good, beautiful building, strong and durable.

Why Aikido?

Aikido is a combat sport for some, for others is mystical. Its ambitious purpose proposes nothing less than a way of settling disputes eradicating violence, and for this very reason, suggests an angle of approach and communication with others and the world. Its strength comes probably from the rigor of its principles and is based on a coherent and structured method, being both extension and rupture with other martial arts. Many contact sports and competition have lost some of its essence.


There are traditional martial arts like taekwondo, which, by becoming competitive and Olympic, have lost some of its traditional principles. In addition, many of them require significant physical prowess, so when the person grows, they feel they can not practice it. However, Aikido can be practiced by anyone, regardless of age, sex or physical condition, even with some physical disability. Anyway, the other martial arts are also very interesting and in fact there are many similarities with Judo and karate: they are interrelated.

Relationship trainer-student in Aikido

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