Aikido: martial art and educational method

Nowadays, one of the big problems with children is their over-aggression - over peers, animals, the elderly. The use of weapons for delusional reasons, the fights that plan in a second, the need for someone to physically hurt or, unfortunately, and kill ... make us think. How to educate children, and then how to teach them to be in harsh defense situations, but also never to attack first? Perhaps because of all of this, in Serbia a large number of children are involved in martial arts and skills programs, within which they learn the basics of self-defense. In this issue, we will introduce you with skills called aikido, with the help of Bratislav Stajic - the main instructor, president and founder of the International Aikido Academy and the Serbian Aikido Federation.


AIKIDO - martial art and educational method


Bratislav Stajić says that the basis of this skill is the establishment of harmony without the use of physical strength. That is, within it, it does not contradict the laws of nature. There is no place for a competition, the exercise is without the feeling of victory or defeat. You are always training to perfect yourself, pure heart and mind, in harmony with your partner. It is therefore no coincidence that aikido is called the martial art of harmony. Why do children so much like that skill? First of all, it is interesting to them when they can, almost unreally easily, master the peers who are stronger than them. Of course, this is only possible if they really learn aikido techniques. When they understand this, children are more attentive and more closely following the training, and begin to self-improve. They advance their moves, not comparing themselves with others, but with themselves, acquiring a certificate of their own value. Instead of medals and diplomas, aikido gives the most important - proper physical and spiritual development.


As I met very young children in the clubs, I was interested in the ideal age to begin training. Based on many years of experience, Bratislav Stajic believes that for the earliest beginnings, the best school age is six years or more, but says there are exceptions. In the last few years, there has been an increase in parents' interest in enrollment of children aged four to five, who adjust the program on time. The registration is done primarily on the basis of the child's interest, provided that there is minimal attention at the training. Children love aikido because it is interesting for them, almost unreally easily, to master the peer who is stronger than them


In the group of children under ten, the number of boys and girls is uniform, while at the age of fifteen, the ratio is 70 to 30 percent in favor of boys. As far as the upper limit is concerned, it does not exist, because Aikido is a skill that is practiced for a lifetime. Even new members are included - 60 years old, who easily follow the entire course of the training. Of course, with the intensity of training that suits them. Because, in dealing with this skill, no special physical predispositions are required, and power is not used to a great extent. Along with properly trained training, almost everyone can practice.


In the case of a diseased child, the decision on whether she can train - is left to the doctor, who must give written approval. In one of the clubs, even in addition to the practice shop, there is also a doctor's office, which is continuously available to small and large practitioners - for virtually any health problem, or only control!


Prevention is very important in clubs, and training brings many benefits. Children train bare, which is extremely useful for kids with flat soles. Aikido techniques are quite complex and require great attention and concentration, which has a favorable effect on the development of these properties. Through aikido techniques, children learn to improve balance, and then control their partner with whom they practice. They gradually take control of their body, developing the quality of self-control.


During the training, children are placed in a situation to predict the movement of their body in relation to the movement of others, and on the basis of that they correct their path in real time, which strongly develops the coordination of the body. As there are no competitions - there is no aggression, which aikido makes extremely suitable for proper upbringing of children. It is not the goal to defeat someone else (which in itself causes negative emotions), but to progress through cooperation with a partner and other practitioners. The program of the International Aikido Academy is very gradual and progressive. Until one level is overcome, do not go to the next. The degrees are determined by the numbers: tenth, ninth, eighth, seventh and sixth kj (this is the international mark for the pupil's degree) and, at the same time, the colors of the belts: yellow, orange, green, blue and brown. When children are twelve years old, they pay for the program for the elderly, for the fifth, fourth, third, second and first Ky. If the children have laid for all the previous belts, and have acquired other conditions, when they are fifteen years old, they can take the black belt.


Aikido is a very dynamic martial art. One of its basic characteristics is movement, in fact what we miss most in today's fast-paced life. General mobility is part of everytrenning, all the time, in various forms. Children perform back and forth, left-right, up-down, circularly horizontally and vertically, spirally ... which improves circulation throughout the body. Stretching exercises of all muscles, very useful for children who grow. They strengthen all muscle groups, especially the abdominal and back, which help to achieve better body restraint.


The training begins by giving the command to the children to sit straight in the row, sorted by bands and heights - in silence, focusing on training. Immediately move to the first part, which consists of light exercises for heating and stretching muscles, which lasts about 20 minutes. In the second part, specific aikido movements and the skill of safe falling (about 15 minutes) are practiced. During the third part (about 20 minutes), aikido techniques of self-defense are taught. Training exercises are carried out as modeling exercises, as well as various simple and complex movements, which form proper motor habits and movements. During the last five minutes, children relax through various speed and skill games. If time remains, it is foreseen for ball games. However, there is no indulgence in time because coaches are aware that children need to develop perseverance and sense of discipline. The first trial TRAINING IS FREE.


It takes place twice a year, and only children who have mastered the program are invited to it. This avoids disappointment from the drop in the exam in a child who has not mastered the program. Lunch at the end of the calendar and school year is also a good opportunity for children to organize entertainment programs (mini-parties, even clowns). Occasional trips are organized for the youngest, the trainers lead them to numerous presentations and festivals. In short, they hang out outside of the training.


Coaches are working with children who have undergone many stages of advancement in Aikido: beginners, advanced students, and masters. During this time they helped younger students to progress, so by the time they independently conduct training - they have a lot of experience in learning others. The training level comes from those who started to train because they liked it, and survived for a long time, and advanced to the training level. And, of course, only those who loved aikido. That's why coaches are people who love their job. My interlocutor also brought a large number of his students to the Master's Degree (Black Belt). Bratislav Stajić runs regular trainings for children, adults and aikido trainers, as well as numerous seminars for clubs and federations. In addition, he trained special police and army units at home and abroad. Coordinates work in 25 aikido schools around the world. Space, terms, equipment ... Regardless of the time of the year, clubs use training facilities in sports centers, adapted school and other spaces of sufficient size for training purposes. For children, trainings are usually two to three times a week. If anyone wants to, he always has the opportunity to train much more. Of the equipment, at the beginning, the lower part of the sweatshirt and t-shirts is needed, and later they need to get special training clothes: kimono, which consists of the lower part, the upper part, and the belt. Through aikido techniques, children learn to improve balance, and then control their partner with whom they practice.


For the claim that Bratislav Stajić and his colleagues work great with children and adults in Serbia, confirms the interest of other countries in their method. Clubs that work within the International Aikido Academy, headquartered in Belgrade, are currently located in Serbia, Russia, Kazakhstan and America, but there is great interest and suggestions for cooperation from other countries. In Serbia there are several aikido organizations of similar names, and a large number of aikido clubs. In larger cities there are more, while in small towns, unfortunately, they are insufficient. There are several different aikido organizations in Serbia. In the Serbian Aikido Alliance, they deal with this skill exclusively as a self-defense and education system for young people, without any "mystification." If you do not know why it is so important, go back to the beginning of the text Or, browse through any daily newspapers - about the violence.

The text was taken from Interview with Bratislav Stajić from the magazine MAMA