Mamoru Okada Sensei (岡田主), 1921-2014 This is another of a type of essay that I really enjoy reading – memories of meeting and training with Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba from the perspective of ordinary students. In this essay Mamoru Okada recounts his memories of meeting Morihei Ueshiba in Osaka in 1949, after seeing him at a public demonstration held for members of the Nishi Health System. Interestingly, it … Continue reading Mamoru Okada – Training with Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba
Katsuzo Nishi – Founder of the Nishi Health System
In 1927 Katsuzo Nishi created a system of health exercises called the Nishi Health System (Nishi Shiki).
His theories are characterized by the idea that the human bone structure and positioning of the internal organs are basically the same as those evolved for the mammalian species that ambulate on four legs, but human beings have adopted an upright two-legged life style that places unnatural structural strains on the human bone structure. This results in problems like obstruction of the flow of food through the intestines (constipation) due to the unnatural (vertical) positioning of the organs. As methods to compensate for these structural defects, Nishi conceived and encouraged the use of treatment through exercises such as the goldfish movement spinal column exercise and the lateral vibration exercise known as the “Haifuku Undo”.
It so happens that Nishi was himself a student of Aikido Founder Morihei Ueshiba, and the Nishikai (the organization formed around the Nishi Health System) was instrumental in inviting Koichi Tohei to Hawaii in 1953.In 1961 the students of Hawaii dedicated the opening of the "Honolulu Aiki Dojo", the first Aikido dojo constructed outside of Japan. Morihei Ueshiba O-Sensei came from Japan, his one and only trip to the United States, to dedicate the opening of the dojo.