History of the Martial Art

Histoire Aikido

Morihei Ueshiba, founder of the aikido, was born in 1883 in a small town in Japan. Very young, the budo arouses its interest. He studied jûjutsu and kenjutsu (fencing with the Japanese saber). Curious, it is not limited to technique alone, but also to the philosophical aspect of these disciplines. Despite its small size (1 m 54), it becomes physically superior to the average.

An anecdote tells that an imperial naval officer, impressed by the notoriety of Morihei Ueshiba, provoked him to a duel. To his surprise, not once did he manage to touch him. Morihei explained that he felt his attacks before they even took place. He saw, or felt, a flash of light even before the attack took shape.

It was at this time that Ueshiba realized that the real essence of budo was not in the use of force but in the quest for peace and serenity for the sake of individual fulfillment. The budo should lead to harmony between the temporal and the spiritual. It was this research that was initiated by the aikibudo, the name given at that time to the aikido which was not called until after the Second World War. (Ai = harmony, coordination, union, ki = inner power, spirit, energy, dô = study, research, path).

Morihei Ueshiba continued to promote his art through many writings and demonstrations until his death in 1969.

History of the Section

The aikido section of our club is currently led by Gildo Mezzo, 7th dan of Aikikai. Gildo started his apprenticeship in Aikido in 1967. After three years of practice in Geneva, he traveled to Japan to attend intensive training sessions at the Hombu Dôjô in Tokyo (World Aikido Center). He stayed there for five years and got his first dan.

Upon his return to Switzerland in 1975, he began teaching aikido at the SDK. He then had only a few pupils, the old aikido section of the SDK having divided itself between those who had decided to follow the Mochizuki style, the yoseikan budo, and the others who preferred the Ueshiba style and who Were waiting for a teacher. With one course per week, the section gradually grew and grew. Today it includes about 120 practitioners (adults and children) with about thirty students regularly on tatami. The number of courses increased to 4 weekly classes for adults under the direction of Gildo Mezzo, and two courses per week for children given by two to three advanced students.

The section is very active. Eight courses each year and the visit of many masters of this discipline, among others: formerly, Me Kitaura, Me Chiba, and the late Me Yamaguchi, Me Fujimoto, Me Tamura, and Me Merit, today Me Tissier, Me Gouttard , Mr. Orban, Mr. Bachraty ...

With the constant efforts of Gildo Mezzo, the section currently has around thirty black belts that participate regularly in training and motivate less experienced practitioners.
Histoire Aikido Genève