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Instructor: Chris Kuszmaul, ckuszmaul@pausd.org and Hideki Shiohira
Duration: 6 wks
Date range: June 12 to July 21
Date(s) of the week: Tuesday and Thursday / 6:30–7:30 p.m. -AND- Saturday / 10–11 a.m.
Quarter: Summer 2018
Prerequisite: None
Address: Palo Alto HS Rm 904
Price: $120
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Welcome to Aikido! The Art of Peace—a dynamic art based on harmony.

Enjoy noncompetitive training in a supportive community. Meditation and other practices consistent with the combined study of fine arts, martial arts, and meditation are offered by 6th degree black belt Chris Kuszmaul, with support from 7th degree black belt Hideki Shiohira.

The training in this class encompasses Aikido, meditation, and other training consistent with allowing students to be, and to become who they are.

The Japanese martial art of Aikido is a comprehensive system of throwing, jointlocking, striking and pinning techniques, coupled with training in traditional Japanese weapons such as the sword, staff and knife.

Founded by Morihei Ueshiba early in the twentieth century following his own extensive study of various armed and unarmed martial systems, Aikido represents a potent distillation of centuries of Japanese martial knowledge. It is one of the most widely practiced budo, or martial way, in the world. However, Ueshiba (commonly called O-Sensei, or “venerable teacher”) was determined that his aikido be practiced as more than simply a method of fighting. The Japanese martial arts, influenced by the internal and meditative disciplines inherited from India and China, have often carried with them an emphasis on the development of internal, as well as physical, integrity. Wielding the life-taking sword with compassion and insight, the ideal warrior in Japanese thought is more than a simple killing machine; he is a model of uprightness, courage and loyalty, gladly sacrificing life (but never honor) in the name of principle and duty. Steeped in these traditions, O-Sensei conceived of Aikido as not only a means of vanquishing a foe, but as a means of promoting the positive character of the ideal warrior and ultimately of Aikido is shugyo: an intense physical and spiritual training that reveals who we have been all along.

Meditation consists simply of sitting and breathing, with a small modicum of ritual to punctuate the practice. The less said the better, but we will say that the meditative practice becomes central to the martial practice for advanced students.