Category Archives: News

SAITO Hitohira sensei – seminar in Murmansk – 2016.

murmansk 1

The world-famous master, Hitohira Saito Shihan, head of the Traditional Aikido school in Japan – visited Murmansk to instruct a seminar.

Sensei was invited by the Zapolyarniy fans of martial arts. This seminar was to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the first aikido clubs in the region.

It was the first time that Saito Hitohira Sensei came to Murmansk. The Russian masters recognized and appreciated his high level of training.

According to Saito Hitohira Sensei, the purpose of those who decide to study Aikido, is to achieve internal, spiritual purification.

For this seminar, there was a participation of Aikido lovers from different Russian cities: Moscow, Saint-Petersburg. Ivanovo, Apatity and Murmansk.
During this seminar, we practiced a variety or techniques, such as, Taijutsu: Morote dori – kokyu ho;
Ikkyo, nikyo and sankyo (osae waza, nage waza);
Shiho nage; yokomenuchi – irimi nage, kotegaesi. Ninin dori and sannindori – kokyu nage; Bukiwaza:
Ken suburi;
Ken awase, 1-7,
Kumi tachi 1,2,3,4, with variations;
Jo suburi – 1-21;
31 no kata;
13 no kata and 13 kata awasе; We also practiced kumi jo – 1,2,4,5,6,7,8,9 For the special keiko, we trained Ken tai jo – 1,2,3,4

After the seminar, Sensei visited the aquarium with sea animals and an aboriginal settlement in Murmanska- Pomerania.

Thank you Sensei, for this wonderful seminar.

Alexandr Kravchuk

SAITO Hitohira sensei – International seminar in Rennes. France – Nov.2016.

Stage Saito group pic1

120 participants joined this fourth international seminar in Rennes. It has been a real pleasure to welcome Sensei and people from many various countries. People from Italy, Germany, Iran, Portugal, Morocco, Belgium, England, Switzerland, United States, Japan and of course France joined this seminar.

The visit of Sensei in Rennes, started on Thursday with a great moment as we meet up with a professional sculptor. Sensei was invited to make a “performance” by sculpting a bloc of clay with a theme of his choice. So that the sculptor and Sensei worked on different bloc of clay with a common theme. Sensei realized for his first experience a beautiful sculpture of a Dragon’s head. We all were amazed by how Sensei felt the sense of it and how he gave to the clay the shape of a dragon’s head. We shared a great moment.
Seminar started on Friday. Sensei had very kind regards on each one of us and was really involved in making adjustments to people’s moves and explaining us the sense of the techniques. He lays the emphasis upon his research on Ô sensei’s Aikido and gave many explanations upon how Aikido spread around the world in different ways. He also focuses on the importance to improve ourselves in our daily practice by using different key exercises.

After training, we had on Saturday a user-friendly party with sensei at the dojo.
The atmosphere was really close to an uchi-deshi party in Iwama and thanks to sensei, the represented dojos performed a specific song… So we had a very chilled out atmosphere and we all enjoyed this particular and privileged time.

Saito hitohira ken Rennes nov2016

This seminar really reinforced the strong links between the different Dojo and Aïkidoka. SAITO Hitohira sensei really rallied everybody under his incredible Aikido and showed us the importance of being all together to practice and feel such powerful instant. Sensei showed us beyond doubt that Aikido unifies people. During this seminar we felt very close to that old saying of Ô sensei:
“The Art of Peace begins with you. Work on yourself and your appointed task in the Art of Peace. Everyone has a spirit that can be refined, a body that can be trained in some manner, a suitable path to follow. You are here for no other purpose than to realize your inner divinity and manifest your inner enlightenment. Foster peace in your own life and then apply the Art to all that you encounter.”
Arigatou gozaimashita, sensei.

Olivier Eberhardt
Rennes – France.




Saito Sensei in the USA – 2016


In keeping with the long tradition of Iwama Aikido in Sonoma County, Dennis Tatoian and Takemusu Aikido of Sonoma (TAOS dojo group) were proud to host Hitohira Saito Soke for another great seminar in late October marking the third annual International Seminar for Aikidoka of all ages and skill levels from around the globe and United States.

Keiko this year focused on Bukiwaza and emphasized the importance of serious practice and the fundamental basics of the Aikiken and Aikijo curriculum of O’Sensei’s weapons practice that was codified into a uniform system of training by the great Morihiro Saito Shihan.

Sensei was quite gracious in his demeanor and spirits were high on the mat, which was full of many good friends who were all happy to train together and receive instruction from one of the world’s foremost practitioners of Aikido.

Many thanks to all our friends from local and far away dojo as well as cross-country and international travelers who made the long journey to wine country. We all eagerly look forward to next year’s seminar Octorber 13-15, 2017. Mark your calendars and join us!!!

Julian Shay




Sensei at Modena International Seminar – 2016

Sensei Modena 2016

On the 21st of September, Sensei arrived Wednesday evening, at 10:10 pm at Bologna Airport. Waiting for Him there were 3 persons: Fabio Luppi, the host, Alice, his daughter and Alessandro Tittarelli.
In one hour and half we got to Serramazzoni (MO), a nice Town, 800 meters height in the Apennines Modenese.
We checked in at “Scuola Alberghiera e di Ristorazione di Serramazzoni”( ), school famous throughout Italy for the excellent training of personnel Hospitality: Food and first class service.

22 September 2016:
Thursday morning, Fabio Luppi, Sensei and Alessandro Tittarelli, visited a big shopping center of Modena, the Grand Emilia ( where Sensei was able to see and even buy some local specialties. Lunch was at the Serramazzoni School. After lunch we relaxed, walked through the village and visit the Municipal Gym where the preparation for the koshukai [placing of the Tatami and the “Shomen”] was taking place. At around 6 pm teachers from Switzerland and Germany joined the group and we went for dinner at a local restaurant (Antica Trattoria Cacciatori)to eat venison (tortellini in broth, pappardelle, deer, wild boar etc … ).

23 September 2016
On Friday morning after breakfast the group went to visit a farm about 20 kilometers from Serramazzoni, in the land of Pavullo nel Frignano, where the owners (former students of hotel school) have built the ‘Agriturismo Casa Minelli ( Here Sensei, himself a farmer too, could see how the local Bio flour of ancient grains is produced also and especially how to produce balsamic vinegar older than 50 years.
Lunch was at the School in Serramazzoni.
We were ready for the koshukai!

About 100 people joined the koshukai and they came from the USA, UK, France, Macedonia, Romania, Germany, Switzerland, Iran, Slovakia and Italy. Some important teachers also attended the koshukai such as Alessandro Tittarelli, (8th Dan), Alberto Boglio (6th Dan), Stephan Kurilla (6th Dan) and Akimasa Watanabe (6th Dan).
The training was fantastic and everybody simply loved it: Tachi Dori, Tanken Dori, Taijutsu (Kote Gaeshi, Irimi Nage…), Jo Dori, Jo Kata, Kumi Jo, Kumi Tachi and Kumi Tachi no Henka. The “Special Keiko” was on Nikyo and Sankyo Henka but also Kaeshi Waza from Nikyo (Sankyo and Ago Oshi) and Shiho Nage (Sutemi Waza).
A lot to study now that we are back home!!!

At the end of the koshukai, Francesca, Tittarelli sensei’s daughter, who is like a member of the Saito family, visited Sensei with her son Melquiades and husband Alain. Danilo di Teodoro, an old timer from Italy was with them. It was a wonderful family reunion during lunch time, on Sunday.
Sensei departed on monday morning back to Japan, where he arrived safely.

thank you very much for Your patience and teaching! It was a superb koshukai!

Thanks so much for the organization, the host Fabio Luppi with his students, and to Tittarelli shihan who is always on the back of every koshukai making it run smoothly.
Also thanks to the photographers Eric Savalli, Thomas Podzelny and Mirca Mazzavillani.

sensei teaching modena 2016