Riai is a modern association, which strives to be at the forefront and contribute to development on many levels. Not only within aikido, but pedagogically and socially as well. The Association is gender conscious, with the goal of having equal numbers of female and male board members and instructors. We do local annual performances, including Hanami in the Botanical Garden in Gothenburg. We do training camps regularly and have a network of associations with whom we collaborate.
At Riai we do our best to ensure our leaders and members are educated in leadership, sports injuries and sports pedagogy. In addition to SB&K and SISU’s different training programs, Riai has a Young Leadership Training for our youth between 13 and 19 years of age.
Happy Aikido & Physical Literacy (MotoriQ)
Happy Aikido is an educational methodology for children and youth training – developed by Riai Aikido Dojo (Riai) och Aikido Dojo Liljeholmen (ADL). Pia at Riai and Åsa at ADL have published two books together about Happy Aikido. You can read an excerpt here.
The aim is to inspire and motivate children and youth to physical practice and movement with joy, and to find a deeper understanding of what different ages need to find this joy, without competition as motivational factors.
Happy Aikido has much in common with Physical Literacy, an internationally established concept both in research and physical education, which develops exercises and training methodologies, which lifelong strengthen the links between joy and physical exercise.
Professor Dean Kriellaars from Canada is an leading figure of importance in Physical Literacy, who conducts exciting research in Sports Psychology and and Motivational Research. The Swedish Budo and Martial Arts Association uses the MotoriQ in their curriculum when they educate in Physical Literacy. This approach is in line with the 2025 strategy of the Swedish National Sports Association (Riksidrottsförbundet), which Riai is a part of. With the support of The Swedish Budo and Martial Arts Association, Riai arranged a workshop called “Risky Play”, a Physical Literacy concept. The workshop resulted in a movie.
Swing by Happy Aikido.
Budo Kensho – a Budo Constitution
Budo Kensho is a policy document from 1987, formulated by the Japanese budoorganization (Nippon Budo Kyogikai, which has been signed by representatives of all major budo disciplines – judo, karate, aikido, sumo, kendo and others. Budo Kensho constitutes what traditional budo is, and details how budo can contribute to the development of individuals and society. I.e. it states;
- the purpose of budo is to help the student become a good human and a resource to society at large
- to increase understanding that practice is much more than mere technical competence
- competitions and demonstrations are about doing your best and self control
- the training room (dojo) must be safe, clean and secure and the teacher should be a role model with focus on the whole, not the competitive aspects
There is an equivalent budo constitution for children and youth. It emphasizes the importance of taking care of your training peers. Happy Aikido, our newly published training book for children has a section about Budo Kensho.
The Budo Constitution emerged out of many budo disciplines gaining popularity outside of Japan, and focus becoming more about competitions and techical execution at the expense of traditional values. What we see in sports today is exactly the same. We know from current research that you do not get the best athletes by dividing children into an A team and a B team at an early age. Studies show – if joy and fellowship is not an integral part of the training motivation, very few have the strength to continue.
At Riai we safeguard fellowship and joy. And we know technical competence will come, if you keep coming to the dojo.