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two individuals partaking in an aikido duel

How Aikido Can Improve Your Life

By | Aikido Classes for Adults, El Paso TX | No Comments

Aikido may not be as popular as karate or tae kwon do but it’s still an incredibly useful martial art style. For starters, it’s a great way to stay in shape and learn vital self-defense skills. But aikido goes far deeper than any simple self-defense class. In fact, aikido practitioners are able to improve both their bodies and minds. If you’re interested in this martial art, visit Aikido of El Paso! We’re the Sun City’s go-to aikido academy and we always welcome new students. Keep reading to learn more about the many benefits aikido has to offer!

Improve Flexibility

As we age, we begin to lose our flexibility. This is often due to living a sedentary lifestyle. Perhaps you sit in an office chair at work, from 8-5, then you drive home to sit on the couch to watch television. We understand that many people live their lives like that and we’re not judging! We’re just pointing out how those habits can cause us to lose our ability to be as flexible as we’d like. Being flexible isn’t just for picking up things from the floor. By being more flexible, you’ll be able to live a happier, healthier life!

Increase Posture, Balance, and Coordination

Building on the flexibility, aikido also helps individuals with their posture, balance, and coordination. Have you ever seen someone with immaculate posture? Perhaps right now you subconsciously adjusted your shoulders so you could stand a little straighter. Aikido can help improve your posture so you won’t have to think about it anymore! Similarly enough, you’ll also be able to improve your balance and coordination. As we age, issues with balance and coordination can lead to injuries. So, by building up your balance and coordination through aikido, you’ll be able to live a safer life.

Increased Self-Awareness, Confidence and Relaxation

Everything that you’ll learn through aikido builds upon itself. Once you make aikido a habit, you’ll be more self-aware. This, in turn, translates to confidence and relaxation. You’ll be more confident because you’ll be exercising regularly, getting your heart rate up and losing weight. By working out your muscles in a thoughtful manner, you’ll also be able to be more relaxed than ever before!

Join Aikido of El Paso, Today!

If you’re ready to improve your life for the better, sign up at Aikido of El Paso! If you’re still curious about what exactly aikido is, visit our academy and take a look at what we have to offer. Before long, you’ll begin to feel the benefits of aikido in your life.

Two aikido practitioners demonstrating a common move in a traditional aikido dojo

What Our Aikido Lessons Have to Offer

By | Aikido Lessons, El Paso TX | No Comments

Two aikido practitioners demonstrating a common move in a traditional aikido dojoAikido is a popular martial art among adults and children alike due to its real-world applications. In addition to being a great form of self-defense, aikido offers mental and emotional balance and fortitude to those who devote their bodies and minds to the art. Unlike other forms of exercise, which may simply exercise the body, aikido provides all-encompassing training that helps practitioners focus their mind and body into becoming the best version of themselves. Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it? If you’re in the El Paso area and you’re looking for a way to enrich your life, visit Aikido of El Paso!

Aikido Lessons: The Path Towards Achieving Inner Peace

Fundamentally, aikido is defined as a martial art that uses the momentum of an assailant to the practitioner’s advantage. As such, it’s much more “peaceful” than other martial arts. As with most martial arts, aikido also focuses on the philosophical and spiritual aspects of training. In fact, these aspects can be seen as more important than the actual, physical manifestations of force and defense. Aikido was established as a form of harmony with nature. Practitioners learn how to focus themselves and the world that surrounds them so, in the instance of an attack, the aikidoka (aikido practitioner) will be able to calmly and safely subdue their enemy or assailant by using the assailant’s own momentum. This can be achieved once the practitioners have reached peace within themselves and with nature. As formidable as this may seem, it’s possible for beginners to reach this degree of peace.

The Physical and Psychological Benefits of Aikido

Perhaps all this talk of “inner peace” may detract from the fact that aikido still serves as a great way to improve flexibility and physical fitness. As with most forms of martial arts or physical training, it’s necessary to devote one’s time and effort in order to grow in their knowledge of aikido. This is why aikido is a perfect option for adults and children. With the help of the instructor, practitioners will be able to work and excel at their own pace. Before long, you’ll notice the health benefits that come about from aikido. That, along with a newfound knowledge of self-defense, will give aikido practitioners a new lease on life. If you’re interested in signing up or simply curious as to what exactly aikido has to offer, give us a call or visit our academy, today!

two individuals practicing aikido as the sun sets in the background

Is Aikido An Effective Form of Exercise for Adults?

By | Aikido Classes for Adults, El Paso TX | No Comments

As we age, we begin to get stagnant. Perhaps the routine of your professional life has caused you to calcify or maybe there aren’t enough hours in the day to devote to your personal training. Maybe you signed up for a gym but you haven’t gone in weeks. We understand the difficulty of devoting time out of your busy schedule to health and exercise. In order to achieve the health you deserve, you need to build up healthy habits. We’ve outlined three important reasons why you should choose aikido as the “exercise” portion of your diet and exercise routine.

1) Relieve Stress and Center Your Mind While Exercising

If you’re like most adults, you’ve heard the age-old adage of “diet and exercise.” It sounds so easy, to simply change your habits and then all of a sudden you’re fit and energetic! For many people, however, breaking these habits is very difficult. This is where martial arts come into play. Unlike going to the gym or jogging around your neighborhood throughout the week, you can gain valuable knowledge and insight with martial arts training. When you partake in aikido, you’ll work out your body and mind. Vocalizing is a big part of martial arts so you’ll be able to grunt and yell as you practice. This can help you relieve the stress you’ve accumulated throughout the day or week all while preparing you for what lies ahead!

2) Don’t Worry, This Is a Total Body Workout

Some may have preconceived notions of martial arts; perhaps martial arts don’t seem like a true workout. Well, you don’t have to worry because when you partake in aikido, you’ll experience a total body workout that will help you burn more calories in less time, build more muscle, and increase strength. Aikido is also highly aerobic so you’ll increase your flexibility and balance while burning calories. The bottom line is, aikido training can provide a plethora of benefits for adults who don’t have a lot of free time to devote to exercise.

3) Learn Something That Will Benefit You In Real Life

Martial arts are, at their core, a way of using your body as a weapon. Although aikido is a defensive martial art, you can still use what you’ve learned as self-defense. Building muscle by lifting weights may make you look chiseled but it won’t show you how to use the strength you’ve built up if you ever face an adversary. When you practice aikido, you’ll be able to be more flexible, have faster reflexes, and know what to do to defend yourself from attackers. Curious about aikido classes for adults in the El Paso area? Contact Aikido of El Paso today to learn more about how aikido can benefit you!

a woman practicing self defense at an aikido academy

Center Yourself in the Fast-Paced World with Self Defense Classes

By | El Paso TX, Self Defense Classes | No Comments

Although El Paso constantly ranks as one of the safest cities in the nation, bad things still happen to good people. By partaking in self defense classes, you’ll be able to have the knowledge and skills necessary to fend for yourself if the situation requires it. Aikido of El Paso proudly provides self defense classes to anyone who’s interested. Not only does self defense training boost your overall awareness and physical conditioning, but it also allows you to develop self-discipline while building up your confidence. It’s never too late to start!

The Physical Aspect of Self Defense Training

Self defense training is built upon a foundation of physical conditioning. As a martial art, aikido focuses on grappling and softness which means it redirects the momentum of the opponent’s attack, throwing the opponent off balance. Unlike other styles of martial arts, aikido is meant to protect both the practitioner and the attacker from injury. This differs aikido from other forms of martial arts as the physical training aspect requires mastery of controlled relaxation as well as correct movements of joints. Aikido has more of a focus on flexibility and endurance than in strength. This is because the force in the training comes from the attacker, never from the practitioner. Although there may not be an emphasis on strength training, practitioners still develop physical conditioning. But aikido goes far deeper than the surface; it penetrates the soul of the practitioner, guiding them on the correct path.

Centering Yourself in a Fast-Paced World

People partake in self defense classes in order to be able to protect themselves if the situation requires it. Although other styles of self defense may show you how to defeat an attacker, they also create violent intentions and aggressive thoughts. When it comes to self defense, it’s crucial for you to be able to center yourself. This way, you’ll be able to make the right decision on a split second. Self defense training from Aikido of El Paso will lead to more confidence and overall awareness. With enough training, you’ll be able to stay aware of any potential hazards in your immediate vicinity. As they say, the best offense is a good defense. This is exactly what aikido training has to offer. If you’re curious about aikido training, give Aikido of El Paso a call. We’re taking on new students regularly. Before long, you’ll have the knowledge and skill to defend yourself.

Start the New School Year with Aikido Youth Classes

By | Aikido Youth Classes, El Paso TX | No Comments

As we enter the month of September, students all across the El Paso area are quickly settling into the flow of things. The stress of school, homework, extracurricular activities, and friendship can wear down on the mind and spirit of students of all ages. This is where aikido youth classes come into play. By participating in aikido lessons specially designed for the youth, your child will be able to find focus while working out mind and body. Aikido can be seen as both a philosophy and martial art. Unlike karate or taekwondo, aikido is completely defensive. Students learn to use the force of their aggressors to defend themselves while protecting the aggressor from serious injury. Continue reading to find out how aikido can benefit your child’s life!

After School Aikido Youth Classes to Improve Academics

Many studies have shown that after-school sports can lead to better grades and more positive academic standing. Aikido, unlike soccer, football, basketball, or tennis, is a martial art that combines physical training with philosophy. The main tenant of aikido is non-resistance making it less about competition and more about finding internal balance and peace. One can see other sports as incredibly competitive and upsetting (if the child’s team were to lose, the child might feel responsible for not scoring the winning goal. This can lead to negative ramifications in the child’s life). But when it comes to aikido youth lessons, practitioners (also known as aikidoka) seek the path of non-resistance and thus avoid becoming bogged down in competition. Instead of being trained to beat others, aikidoka are trained to learn the perceive the correct path. This can assist students of aikido in academics, as well.

Learning Self-Defense from a Young Age

Aikidoka are able to learn a positive style of self-defense. Bullying is still rampant in schools across the world. If your child is facing issues at school, aikido can provide a form of self-defense that won’t result in any injuries to your child or the attacker. Through aikido, the practitioner makes use of the active attack that’s directed towards him or her. When a child partakes in aikido youth classes, she will learn self-defense without becoming overly aggressive. Aikido is a way of peace, self-discipline, and self-respect. If you’d like to learn more about what Aikido of El Paso has to offer, give us a call!

two aikido practitioners

Aikido Lessons for Beginners: Strengthen Your Mind, Body, and Spirit

By | Aikido Lessons for Beginners, El Paso TX | No Comments

Martial arts are named that because they truly are an art form. Much like a painting or interpretive dance, martial arts make use of naturality to create something beautiful. In many cases, this beauty can be used as a force for protection or defense. Aikido, for instance, can be seen as the perfect form of self-defense. Instead of imparting negativity and violence into the world, aikido teaches the student to use outside energy to defend oneself. Aikido is often seen as the most effortless martial art form. But achieving that weightlessness takes time, practice, and precision. If you’re looking for aikido lessons for beginners in the Southwest, Aikido of El Paso can help.

The Foundation of Aikido

Aikido is much more than a form of self-defense. It is a budo which is a term used to denote a way of life or, more profoundly, the way of the universe itself. For this reason, aikido training is meant to train both the body and the spirit. It is a philosophically enlightening artform that enhances the mind of the practitioner while empowering the body.  Aikido is not meant to be seen as a competition where the strongest prevails. It’s meant to be a chance for practitioners to better themselves while overcoming the enemies that reside within the spirit.

What To Expect from Aikido Lessons for Beginners

Aikido is very different from other martial art forms. For one, aikido is inherently defensive. Through aikido, practitioners use the negative energy from an outside force (or attacker) in order to defend themselves and the attacker as well. By learning the tenants of exerting expansive power and balance, practitioners will be able to generate energy that can then be used to deter attacks.

Watching aikidōka (aikido practitioners) may look a bit odd at first. One individual comes at the other and then they get flipped upside down or roll over on their backs. It may look more like an interpretive dance than self-defense. The flowing, artful vision of aikido may appear simple on the surface. It does, however, take time and persistence to achieve this level of mastery.

Take Your First Steps

If you’re ready to achieve enlightenment through aikido, contact Aikido of El Paso. This martial art form is excellent for children and adults alike. We offer aikido lessons for beginners and experts alike throughout the week. Give us a call today to learn more about how aikido training can benefit your life!

Why Aikido Lessons Are Great for Children in the El Paso Area

By | Aikido Lessons, El Paso TX | No Comments

Group of children in kimono sitting on tatami on martial arts training seminar. Selective focusAlthough summer is winding down, there’s still time to partake in aikido lessons at Aikido of El Paso. Aikido is known as the “way of harmony with the force of nature,” separating it from other martial arts. It is fully defensive, making it the perfect way to practice self-defense. If you have a child who’s been driving you crazy during this summer vacation, consider setting her up with our youth aikido lessons!

How Children Can Benefit from Aikido Lessons

Summer is synonymous with free time. Although this might be exciting for children who are out of school, parents all across the El Paso area may get more and more tired of having children at home at all hours of the day. This is why summer camps are so popular. But if you’re looking for a way for your child to get exercise and gain valuable life skills, consider aikido lessons. Unlike other martial arts such as karate or taekwondo, aikido focuses on self defense. It’s still a workout, however. It just doesn’t involve any offensive strikes. This is why it’s such a great summer pastime. Aikido can help children in the following ways:

  • Build strength and endurance
  • Encourage cooperative behaviors
  • Increase flexibility
  • Gain confidence and awareness

What Happens Once Summer is Over?

Once summer draws to a close, your child can continue partaking in aikido lessons throughout the year. As your child ages and gains more insight into the art of aikido, she can partake in more advanced classes. In fact, due to aikido’s defensive nature, individuals of all ages can partake in the martial art. This means your child can be a student of aikido as a teenager, young adult, and even as an elderly person! Aikido of El Paso offers plenty of aikido classes all throughout the week. This way, your child can have the perfect way to release all that pent up summer energy. All while gaining valuable insight and knowledge on how to defend oneself, both physically and mentally.

Aikido of El Paso is Here to Help

Aikido of El Paso has provided high-quality training to students in the Southwest area. If your child needs something to do, consider aikido lessons from the masters! Contact us today to learn more about the benefits of aikido.

The Tradition of Japanese Warrior Arts

By | El Paso TX, Japanese Warrior Arts | No Comments

Martial arts karate fighters, master and his disciples in white kimono and black belts hone their skills, fight training in action, workout in gymAikido is a Japanese martial art that has as its central aim the notion of weaponless self defense. The practice aims to keep the attacker injury free. This martial art involves a lot of joint locks and re-direction of the opponent’s momentum. By simply redirecting momentum, you are able to successfully protect yourself without having to generate a tremendous amount of force. At Aikido of El Paso we focus on these basic principles, while instilling some of the ancient warrior virtues.

Brief History of Japanese Warriors

A samurai is a Japanese warrior. This tradition dates back centuries. Samurai’s were trained warriors that were part of an elite military caste. The word samurai translates to “those who serve,” as the early samurais were armed supporters of wealthy landowners. Throughout the centuries the traditions and honor codes of the samurai have carried over and become an important part of the Japanese culture.

Samurais were known for their sober behavior and strict codes. Their behavior was dictated by strongly instilled ideas of honor, loyalty, bravery, and honor. Many of these were held above one’s life, so that soldiers who dishonored the code often preferred to die by suicide than have to live dishonorably.

The Japanese warrior code became known as bushido. The word translates as “the way of the warrior” and gave way to generations of great military men that fought to the death.

Tenets of the Code

The Samurai code developed over years as the art of war developed and ideas about the ideal warrior came to be.

Self-Control: These soldiers were taught to show no fear and exhibit absolute self-control and grace in the battlefield.

Authority: All warriors tended to have a deep respect for hierarchy and authority. They took orders and followed them, as they believed it held together an important structure.

Loyalty: A deep rooted philosophical belief in the loyalty towards country and family, which often discounted individualism. That is, a soldier was  fighting not for himself, but for a greater cause. His own interests came second.

Honor: The elite warrior would not allow himself to feel fear or to disgrace the cause. He was always to operate with grace and to bring honor to his family or country, or else expire by one’s own hand.

We owe a lot to the Japanese when it comes to traditions of martial arts and combat. Aikido places great emphasis in the spiritual and mental aspects of combat. In Aikido, size doesn’t matter, for true strength is in control and technique.  We like to honor this tradition in Aikido of El Paso, where we study this unique martial art, while respecting the history of all Japanese warrior arts.

The Benefits of Enrolling Your Child in Martial Arts

By | El Paso TX, Martial Arts | No Comments

Aikido boy fighting position in white kimono isolated on whiteChildren are adventurous creatures who deserve outlets where they can release all of their pent-up energy and creativity.  Martial arts is a great activity for children to be involved in. Not only can it help them stay in shape and maintain good health, it’s also a great way for them to channel their energy into something positive. Here are some of the benefits martial arts, such as aikido, can have on your children.

Benefit #1: Better Behavior

Kids are sweet, sweet angels—except when they’re not. Children are amazing, but sometimes they throw temper tantrums so crazy, you’re just not sure what to do. Because children are ripe with emotions and a tad on the unpredictable side, giving them a place, like an aikido class, to channel these emotions and energy is a great way to help them behave more without having to enforce punishments and strict rules.

Benefit #2: A Good Night’s Sleep Every Night

Martial arts can be quite tiring, but this is a good thing. It can help your little ones sleep better at night, sleeping through the night and falling asleep more easily at bedtime. Plus, sleeping well and feeling well-rested will help them perform better in school and feel happier.

Benefit #3: Staying Occupied

A little bit of boredom is good for a child’s imagination, but too much boredom can be a recipe for disaster. With a martial arts class in their schedule, your children can stay occupied, create goals for themselves, make new friends, and spend multiple hours a week doing something they enjoy.

Benefit #4: Learning Self Defense

A great thing about attending a martial arts class is that a child will also learn how to defend his or herself. While it hopefully doesn’t come to this, it can come in handy in tricky situations. For one, as a child grows both in mind and in a martial arts class, they will be able to discern the difference between a foe and friend. This combined with knowledge of self defense can help them in dangerous situations.

Call Aikido of El Paso Today!

If you’re looking for a great way to get your child active and to have a place where they can channel their energy, Aikido of El Paso is the place to call. We offer Aikido classes for children ages 6 to 14. Call us today to learn more about our programs!

What Differentiates Japanese Martial Arts from Other Combat Forms

By | El Paso TX, Japanese Martial Arts | No Comments

When discussing the topic of  Japanese martial arts, you may picture individuals in robes striking each other while shouting loudly. It’s important to understand that Japanese martial arts encompass a wide range of styles and techniques, some make use of weapons while others solely rely on the practitioner’s own body and strength. Aikido is one such martial art. It stands apart from other art forms because aikido focuses solely on self defense. If you’re in the El Paso area and you’d like to learn a highly useful form of self defense, visit Aikido of El Paso!

Why Japanese Martial Arts Matter

What differentiates Japanese martial arts from other forms of combat from around the world is the intrinsic philosophy that permeates through every form of martial art. From those that make use of weapons (kendo and kyudo) to those that only require the practitioner’s own body (karate, aikido), the world of martial arts offers a wide variety of choice for all. Japanese martial arts are known as “budo.” This term is used to describe modern martial arts and it translates literally to “the way of war.” Although this literal translation may seem very violentand aggressive, budo is essentially a way of training both the mind and spirit to reach an internal peace. In fact, modern martial arts have no enemy. The only enemy is the one within the practitioner. This “ego” is that which must be fought.

Understanding Aikido

Many types of budo require the practitioner to instill physical injury upon their attacker. This substantial aggression can lead to negative emotions which may manifest in the life of the practitioner. Morihei Ueshiba, aikido’s founder, decided to create a budo that implemented his own martial studies, philosophy and religious beliefs. The term “aikido” loosely translates to the way of harmonious spirit.” In essence, Ueshiba set out to create a budo wherein the practitioner could defend his or herself while protecting the attacker from injury. This may sound counterintuitive, especially from a Western perspective. Regardless, by keeping both the practitioner and the attacker free from harm, aikido is able to impart positive energy into the environment that surrounds the practitioner.

Practice Aikido in the El Paso Area

This is where Japanese martial arts differ from other forms of physical combat or training. Since budo combines philosophy with physical training, the practitioner’s mind and body are reinforced through practice. If you’d like to take your first steps towards enhancing your life, both mentally and physically, then visit Aikido of El Paso! We offer classes to students of all ages, all throughout the week. Contact us today to learn more about our schedule and classes!