Is Aikido Effective in a Street Fight for a Self Defense


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If you are training or thinking about training Aikido, you may be wondering, is Aikido effective martial art in a street fight for self-defense? In this article, we will give you an answer to this question.

Aikido is definitely effective in a street fight and for self-defense. It helps you be aware of what’s going on around you, improves your posture and confidence, makes you ready for multiple attackers, and builds your balance, flexibility, and cardio.

That said, Aikido is not an easy or fast martial art to learn for self-defense, and below we will explain why it is so.

What is Aikido?

Aikido is the youngest Japanese martial art. Although Aikido is the youngest Japanese martial art, its roots lie deep in the past of the country from which it comes.

It was invented by Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969), also known among aikido as O-sensei (Great Teacher) from 1930 to 1960.

Technically, much of aikido is based on the Daito-Ryu Aiki-jiu-jitsu school, the school of martial arts jiu-jitsu. Aikido also has a significant spiritual component.

Aikido Training

In Aikido, as well as in most Japanese martial arts, you train both mental and physical aspects of your body. The physical aspect of the training in aikido is diverse, and it covers both general physical fitness and conditioning, as well as specific techniques.

Because a big part of any aikido training consists of throws, beginners learn how to safely fall or roll. The specific techniques for attack include both strikes and grabs; the techniques for defense consist of throws and pins. After basic techniques are learned, students train freestyle defense against multiple opponents, and techniques with weapons.

Even thou, mostly everything in Aikido training gets you ready for street fight and self-defense, some of the most important things are mental training and defense against multiple opponents. Those two things can often be crucial in a street fight.

How effective is Aikido in a Street Fight for a self-defense

We have already told you that Aikido is a good martial art for self-defense in a street fight, but how effective is it really?

As we mentioned above, it builds your posture and confidence, makes you aware of things around you, builds your balance, flexibility, and cardio gets you ready to fight multiple opponents, and prepares you mentally exactly for these kinds of situations.

But, it has its downsides that we haven’t mentioned before. Aikido is preparing you mentally to avoid these kinds of situations, and when you get in them, to know how to deal with them, which is great. Problem is, Aikido also trains you on how to deal with these situations in a way to not hurt your opponent too much if you don’t have to. Even thou this is a very nice cause, it can sometimes get you in unwanted trouble.

We are not promoting here brutality or use of excessive force, but when your life is at stake, overthinking it, and not giving all you have to solve this situation as fast as possible and with as few consequences for yourself, can lead you to additional trouble.

On the other hand, it is also teaching you how to get out of those attacks in a street fight, without fighting at all, even thou you might win. Sometimes just walking away is hard, when one is provoked, or slightly attacked. It can be much useful and better for you, and possibly your attacker, to avoid fighting completely.

Also, there is a possibility that someone close to you gets drunk or something like that, and attacks you, but you don’t really wont to hurt him, just disable him from doing you harm, this is where Aikido is extremely good.

This also applies to police officers or security guards, their job is not to hurt attacker, but to disable him and restrain him, this is where Aikido would be a great use for them.

Are there kicks in Aikido?

Unfortunately, Aikido is not using kicks in their training.

Aikido has a course on one or two techniques to avoid and lock kicks, but they don’t use them at all. They have strike techniques called “atemi“, but don’t use kicks in general, and they avoid them.

Aikido mostly uses the feet and legs for footwork, and don’t want to go into kicks so you wouldn’t lose balance while doing them. In their opinion, kicks would just take time away from footwork.

Once, Aikido was known as Aikibudo, and as such, it used much more of atemi, which includes both punching and kicking.

There are still many schools, that have gone back to an older, more aikibudo training, which incorporates kicks in their modern classes. This mostly depends on the instructor and his background than the Aikido as martial art specifically.

Is Aikido hard to learn?

Aikido has a reputation for being difficult to learn in comparison to other martial arts and requires a longer period of training to attain proficiency.

This is mostly because it requires a certain temperament and philosophical attitude in order to process the system and its philosophical understructure.

Every martial art has its challenges, but that the difficulty you have with those challenges has less to do with the martial art and more with the suitability of that martial art with your own temperament and attitude.

If you want to learn a good martial art for self-defense in a street fight, or just to calm your temper, then Aikido should be one of your first choices. It can be hard at a start but will lead you long way from where you started.

Conclusion – Is Aikido Effective In a Street Fight For a Self Defense

Aikido is very effective in a street fight for self-defense because it trains you all the right things you need for it.

You are training to face multip opponents, getting your posture and confidence improved, makes you aware of your surroundings, builds your balance, flexibility, and cardio, and probably most importantly, makes your mind ready for a fight, and how to avoid a fight.

Only downside is, most of the Aikido classes don’t teach kicks, even thou, as you can read above, there are some that still use them.

So, learning Aikido is not an easy task, but it will definitely get you ready to defend yourself in a street fight.

We also have a list of best martial arts for self-defense, and even thou Aikido is on that list, unfortunately, it is positioned in the last place.

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