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Morito Suganuma

We’ve met Morito Suganuma Shihan earlier on the site in a post with the warm-ups but he really deserves more… He was born on July 27, 1942, in Fukushima, Japan. He knew about the Aikido from an early age and heard about O-Sensei a few times but only at Asia University in Tokyo, he was able to join a Nobuyoshi Tamura‘s Aikido class. He continued at the Hombu Dojo, where future Sensei was surrounded by the greats with the Morihei Ueshiba as in charge.

Morito Suganuma and the O-Sensei on the railway station

In 1965, after graduating from the University, Morito joined Hombu Dojo as an uchi-deshi. Masatake Fujita, Seishiro Endo and others were in as students. O-Sensei was 84 years old but, from the words of Morito, he was still a lot to learn from despite his old body.

After the O-Sensei’s passing Morito Suganuma was sent to Fukuoka where he founded Aikido Shoheijuku. It’s a network with 70 dojos and more than 4000 students now. They say that Suganuma is considered as the west while the Yasuo Kobayashi is the east of the Aikido in Japan regarding the big networks of schools in a country. The video above (and a second part) shows you a great model of classic Aikido not only with the moves and techniques but with the philosophy and talking about the basic and very important Aikido mind setups.

Morito Suganuma Shihan gives seminars around the world. Canada, Norway, Israel, Netherlands, China. On 1:05 Bjorn Eirik Olsen is taking ukemi for the Suganuma Sensei. Bjorn is one of the high ranked students of the Shihan and a father of the Aikido in Norway.

You may have noticed from the videos that Suganuma Sensei is stretched very well. He makes yoga, practices zen meditation and also he’s a Shodo master where Shodo is a form of calligraphy or artistic writing of the Japanese language.

Shihan is fully active and, while he’s 77 years old, doing his best on the All-Japan Aikido Demonstrations from year to year.

Morito Suganuma is an 8th Dan Aikido Aikikai Shihan. Here’s a site of Shoheijuku Aikido and facebook page if you want to learn more about how things work there.

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