Aikido Kenkyu Kai International (AKI) means 'Aikido Research Group' and is an international network of like-minded aikidoka (Aikido practitioners) inspired by the teachings of Shihan Yoshinobu Takeda, 8th Dan. AKI members are part of the Aikikai Foundation (Aikido World Headquarters), and all dan grades (black belts) are awarded from the Aikikai Japan Hombu Dojo.
Takeda Shihan is a contemporary master of the art who continues the development and inspiration of Aikido through his own intuitive and powerful style. Takeda Shihan received his Aikido instruction from Seigo Yamaguchi Shihan, 9th Dan, who was one of the longest serving students of O'Sensei and trained with O'Sensei until O'Sensei passed away. Yamaguchi Shihan passed away in 1996.
Takeda Shihan is President of Aikido Kenkyukai International and a member of the Aikikai Board. Takeda Shihan has a number of dojos in Japan, with his own dojo in Kamakura near Tokyo. There are clubs in the USA, Canada, New Zealand, South America and throughout Australia. Takeda Shihan's leading Senseis often travel around the world to run training camps. The following picture shows the Senior Senseis.
Back row (L to R): Takayoshi Seino Sensei 7th dan, Koji Yamamoto San, S. Takahashi Sensei 7th dan, Takeshi Suzuki Sensei 7th dan, Daiyu Takeda Sensei 6th dan.
Front row (L to R): Mrs Takeda, Yoshinobu Takeda Shihan 8th dan, Satoshi Takeda Sensei 7th dan, Hideo Numata Sensei 7th dan, Yasuyuki Suzuki Sensei 7th dan.
Aikido Kenkyu Kai in Australia
Aikido Kenkyu Kai began in Australia in 1980, when Takeda Shihan agreed to help Aikido students in Canberra. This was the first AKI dojo outside of Japan. Since then the movement has spread to NSW, Queensland, Victoria and South Australia, and internationally to Canada, USA, New Zealand, Germany, Chile and Uruguay.
Australian Dojos and regions are quite autonomous, and classes are taught by qualified instructors, who receive training from Senior Australian Instructors. Special training camps are lead by Japanese senseis, who often visit Australia, or Senior Australian or International Instructors.
AKI in the ACT Region
Operationally, the ACT Region consists of ACT dojos and Tengoku dojo on the Captains Flat road. The Chief Instructors of ACT Region are Bruce Lowes and Mike MacGregor, 5th Dans, who oversee overall instruction.
Administratively, the ACT dojos operate under an ACT Incorporated body status, while Tengoku dojo operates under a NSW Incorporated body. ACT Region dojos coordinate through an ACT Incorporated body committee. The ACT Incorporated body must, by law, hold annual elections for the following positions:
- President: the role of the president is to ensure that the club continues to grow, become strong, and that issues such as safety, facilities and AKI Australia activities are managed.
- Vice-President: ensures that the President is supported and co-ordinates major activities and promotions.
- Secretary: is responsible for communications to members and to entities outside the club. The Secretary also takes minutes of meetings and manages correspondence.
- Treasurer: manages all monies and ensures AKI Australia gets paid on time.
- 3 Committee members: to help and assist the executive.
- Public Officer: reports audited club accounts to ACT Government