Opening of Manseikan Aikido

The Aikido opening to public for first time in Kumamoto was by a demonstration of Aikido by the current founder of Manseikan Aikido, Kanshu Sunadomari - grand master at Shinbukan, Tetori Honcho in November 1953, after the heavy flood and the wounds of the disaster were still festering. At that time, the sensei seemed to have a goal of only opening training sessions and had no hope to promote the Aikido in Kumamoto. But “Kumamoto Aikikai” renting the dojo room from Ankiro Seiyaku (pharmaceutical company) came into being by the strong wish of Mr. Yoshiaki Nakashima, Manseikan Aikido chairperson and other persons the next year on January. This is the birth of Manseikan Aikido and history up to the present day.

Looking back on my past, nobody knew about the Aikido except the sensei and there was only one person who had experience of training in Aikido at a dojo in pre-war Tokyo. I remember that we dedicated ourselves to the morning and evening training as the descendants of the same starting line with no superior-inferior relations and we were filled with wonder everyday. Today, the Aikido is widely spread here, but it was the very long and difficult going and it is not possible to talk about the Aikido without the hard work of the people who laid groundwork for spreading the Aikido in Kumamoto. We should not forget these people.
It is better to ask the experts to explain about the Aikido, but I would like to show you the part of the training scene at the time.

After fascinated with the beautiful Tai sabaki (repositioning) and the Waza of the sensei, I could not start sliding my legs on the pair training. The sensei said to relax my body and follow the move of my partner, but my muscles stiffened up more and more. This was the first experience and I hesitated to receive and believe the Waza from my partner. I was thinking that I should fight back in martial arts, and both I and my partner had the same idea, so the sensei was very busy in the Aikido coaching. The training session was already over when I felt it was interesting. Because of the rental dojo, I could not extend the training session. We could not use the dojo when the pharmaceutical company was using it, so the chairperson, Mr. Yoshiaki Nakashima and board members had to scramble to finding an alternative dojo. During this time, we had training sessions on different area both in the morning and evening, and we sometimes had no evening training session. We used to use the former Kaikosha (now NHK - Japan Broadcasting Corporation) and Shinbukan. After this history, the specialized dojo of Manseikan Aikido was constructed by the support of many people on October 1955.

It is no exaggeration to say that embracing a great number of Dan ranks and we can see the flowering of this dojo is because Kanshu Sunadomari - grand master grasped what the Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba really meant and devoted himself to uncover the essence of the meaning with a great personality and dedicated to his descendants.

Joined on January 15, 1954
Manseikan Aikido 7 Dan rank Hitoshi Itokawa