As was announced before, the first professional seminar of the only traditional and unique style of aikido “Iwama Aikido” in Iran takes place with the presence of “Alessandro Tittarelli Shihan” from Italy. He has a 8th Dan which is the most one can achieve in this traditional system (this is because of the importance of number eight in the base principle of this system.). He is also senior master of Iwama Aikido in Italy and one of the leading masters of traditional Aikido in Europe, US, Africa and even some parts of Asia after chief master of Iwama organization “Hitohiro Saito Kaicho”. This event takes place from 15th – 20th of August 2016 with the goal of improving techniques and developing the technical and skills and knowledge of students of aikido school.
1- Monday, 15th of August 2016. The first international test for Iwama Aikido in Iran
At first Tittarelli Shihan corrected practice strokes of Ken and Jo (Buki Waza), then pair techniques (Tai Jutsu) which was mostly for 1st Dan. He corrected the techniques and discussed them part by parts. This class was ended at 22:00.
2- Tuesday, 16th of August 2016. Special Keiko
This day Keikos was especially for senior students and instructors. Class started at 6pm with Tittarelli Shihan discussing the right way to do free hand techniques (Kihon No Dosa). Then the students practiced them in pair with Shihan correcting their techniques. In the second part, pair techniques with change in the body position (Tai No Henka) and free hand techniques (Tai Jutsu) was discussed and after correction the class finished at 21:00.
3- Wednesday, 17th of August 2016. Keiko
This day was dedicated to all of the students of all levels. Class started at6pm with Tittarelli Shihan reviewed basic movements (Kihon No Dosa) and after that teach some basic pair techniques which students practiced them. In the second part, different positions of basic techniques in pair (Nikyo) were taught by Shihan and practiced by the students. The class finished at 21:00.
4- Thursday 18 of August, the first day of seminar.
There were going to be 5 different Keikos in morning and afternoon, two in the morning and three in the afternoon. In the morning after sign up session and checking all the student tickets, class started at 9am. Tittarelli shihan taught some basic sword techniques (Ken No Suburi). In the second part, shihan discuss about pair sword techniques (Ken No Awase) and some sword disarmament techniques (Ken Dori). After that students practiced the techniques with Shihan’s guidance. At the 11:45 am and after the class it was photo session were all the students and senior students take pictures with both Arabsorkhi sensei and Tittarelli shihan.
In the afternoon, after having lunch, saying prayers and rest, the first class was held for senior students which especially were about teaching and correcting the partnered techniques focused on the Jo (Kumi Jo) that Shihan carefully checked and corrected all of the mistakes that all the students had. This class last about an hour. After a 15min break-In the second part- shihan first taught the basic Jo strikes (Jo No Suburi), then 6 count form of Jo (Roku No Jo) and some Jo disarmament (Jo Dori). Then students practiced them with Shihan’s guidance. At last, to summer up the first day of seminar, 4 basic techniques and some others from free hand techniques (Tai Jutsu) were taught by shihan and practiced by students. The class was ended at 8pm.
5- Friday 19 of August, second day of seminar.
The first morning class started at 9am. Shihan started by teaching knife disarmament techniques (Tanto Dori). In the second class, shihan discussed about throwing techniques with Jo (Jo Nage) and before the end of morning part of seminar, he asked each kid in the seminar to perform one technique on the senior students with was so interesting for them.
In the last part of this seminar, shihan taught about free style attack and defense that is done one on one (Jiyu Waza). Then he watched as the students practiced them in groups and corrected their mistakes. The 7 class seminar finished in 17:15.
6- Friday 19 of August, Performance (Enbukai)
This event started officially with playing national anthem of both Iran and Italy. First, the host of this event asked Arabsorkhi sensei for an introduction speech. He welcomed all the guests and families of students and gave brief information about this international seminar with Alessandro Tittarelli shihan. Then all the students perform some basic weapon techniques (Buki Waza) and free hand techniques (Tai Jutsu) at the same time.
After that, Research manager of the academy talked about the evolution process of traditional aikido. Then, some students show the weapons and equipment of Iwama Aikido. On next two of the senior students performed some disarmament techniques (Buki Dori). And then there was the performance of aikido school’s kids.
Then, it was time for Arabsorkhi Sensei’s performance. First he performed some short techniques with his two years old daughter which is the youngest student of Aikido school. Second, he performed sword Kata technique (Ken No Awase), 31 no Jo no Kata, San Ju Ichi No Kumi Jo and seated (Suwari) and standing (Tachi) basic pair techniques. After that, host asked Tittarelli shihan for a speech. He first talks briefly about Arabsorkhi sensei background and his first meeting with him. And thank him for organizing this good event. Then, he talked about traditional aikido style “Iwama”. Next, he performed some pair techniques with Jo(Kumi Jo), pair techniques with sword (Kumi Tachi), Jo disarmament (Jo Dori), sword disarmament (Tachi Dori), knife disarmament (Tanto Dori) and free style attack and defense that is done one on one (Jiyu Waza).
At last, Tittarelli shihan announced that two Senpais that he tested on Monday past for the first dan in Iwama. And Tittarelli shihan gave some acknowledgments to some special guests for helping and supporting Iran Iwama aikido. Then some photos were taken. And the event ended at 19:45.
7- Friday 19 of August, Dinner party
The party started at 20:30 and in the middle of having dinner students asked about Shihans religious beliefs. They also asked some questions about aikido. The party ended by surprise as students presented a birthday cake for both shihan and sensei as their birthday were close. And students gave some presents to them.
8- Saturday 21 of August, special Keiko
The last day of Shihans stay in Iran was planned for a special Keiko with few students from 10:30 to 12:30. In this class Shihan focused on teaching and correcting four seated pair technique (Suwari).
At last after a week stay, Tittarelli Shihan left Iran on Sunday 22 of August.
His presence was a source of inspiration to all of us and we all hope to see him soon.