Aikikai Northern Territory Incorporated

Richard Barnes Sensei, Teaching Continuously for 50 Years


Train in the three patterns of triangle, circle and square and it will generate light, heat and power. It will give you power that is irresistible. Those with such irresistible power will be able to grasp the natural, absolute love of heaven and earth and always display the warmth of goodness and love.


Morihei Ueshiba

Aikido History from Japan to Darwin in the Northern Territory


Modern Aikido, was created by Morihei Ueshiba sensei when he made a significant change to Aiki Jujutsu

This ancient, formerly secret Japanese Martial Art, has a noble past going back at least a thousand years.  The change made by O Sensei transformed a violent Fighting Art, appropriate for its time, into a beautiful peaceful art appropriate for ours.

The ancient techniques arose out of a need for a Samurai, who had either broken or lost his weapon in battle, to defend himself using empty hand techniques.

These techniques were modified over time by various practitioners, within the same family, according to their experience of what worked in self defence and  what did not.


It is believed by some Historians that modern Aikido evolved from Aiki Jujutsu and this self defence art had its beginning with  Prince Teijun  a son of Emperor Seiwa, (850-880 AD).

Prince Tiejun  while developing empty hand techniques, to enable him to take control of an attacker, noticed the vulnerability of the hands of a Samurai in armour and the gaps in his armour.

These observations led him to design techniques to take advantage of those weaknesses, particularly if he broke or lost his own weapons. These techniques included bending and twisting the arms and wrists of the attacker or taking hold of the armour to throw the attacker to the ground where he could  control him.

Other techniques were further developed by Prince Teijun’s son, Tsunemoto and one of these developed from studying the different distances he needed to place himself away from an attacker, according to the length of the weapon being used.  He called this technique Ma-ai and it made the defence more effective and is still used and referred to as Ma-ai in modern Aikido.

The secret art of Aiki-Jujutsu was passed down through successive family members who changed the name of the school from time to time in accordance with a change in family name or as they moved from one area to another. 

With some additions and minor changes the art continued down through succeeding generations of the Minamoto clan reaching Yoshimitsu in the 12th century who developed the art further and changed the name of the art to Daito-ryu Aiki-Jujutsu.

Yoshimitsu’s son, Yoshikiyo developed the art further and it was during his lifetime the family took on the name, Takeda, and it was late in the 19th century that a descendant of that family Sogaku Takeda inherited the Aiki-Jujutsu school.


Takeda Sensei,  decided, in the late 19th century, to teach Aiki-Jujutsu to select students outside of the Nobility and one of these was Morihei Ueshiba.  Ueshiba Sensei already had considerable knowledge of a number of Japanese Martial Arts and he rapidly acquired skill in Aiki-Jujutsu which he later taught along with other skills such as sword and spear patterns and defence.

This all changed when the violence of the second world war led Ueshiba Sensei to believe there must be a better way to deal with violence than fighting back and he thought about what religious leaders were saying about meeting violence with non violence.

This led O Sensei to change the focus and method of applying  Aiki -Jujutsu movements into movements which enabled him to merge his movement with that of his attacker, which then enabled  him to take control of the movement and turn it back to his attacker thereby neutralising the attack. He called this new art Aikido.

It seems that not all of O Sensei's students  understood his new philosophical approach to this new Art and this was confirmed by some of his early Aikido Graduates who confessed they did not understand what O Sensei was saying in class.

There are now different styles of Aikido being taught throughout the world and some of them are heavily influenced by the older Aiki-Jujutsu style which Ueshiba Sensei taught before he created modern Aikido.

In contrast to the above,  O Sensei's descendants manage and teach OSensei's Aikido at the Hombu (Aikido Headquarters ) in Japan and travel throughout the world teaching at Aikido schools registered with the Hombu. They teach only basic techniques which is the core of Aikido.


Aikido techniques have an ancient Martial foundation in Aiki JuJutsu.

These techniques were obviously modified by O Sensei to become non aggressive self-defence techniques which have a Nobel Spiritual aspect in their application.

This raises these questions - if an Aikido School is not teaching and training with the fore mentioned goals in mind are they really doing Aikido? Or, are they just teaching a modern form of Aiki JuJutsu?

With a probable 2 million Aikido practitioners world wide the answers to these questions are uncertain, hopefully the majority are following O Sensei's Aikido.

Dates, names and time-lines have been sourced from:-
History of Aikido by Hiroshi Takeuchi

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