Ueshiba Morihei O-Sensei founded Aikido from his training in Daito-ryu Aiki-jujutsu, Tenjin Shin'yo-ryu, Yagyu Shingan-ryu, Kenjitsu and Judo and techniques involving spear (yari) and staff (jo). Ueshiba envisioned Aikido not only as the synthesis of his martial training, but also an expression of his personal philosophy of universal peace and reconciliation.

Aikido is a martial art based on the laws of nature, the order of the universe. As such it provides not only the necessary skills for self defense but also builds self-confidence, character, self-respect, and respect for others. It can be practiced by young and old, male and female alike. Aikido demands honesty, reality, and the kind of fierce determination necessary for self-polishing. This combination of factors sets the stage for an enjoyable study resulting in both practical results and deep intuition.

Mitsugi Saotome Shihan (8th dan) became a special apprentice for Ueshiba Morihei (O Sensei) in 1955 and continued for 15 years until the founder's death in April of 1969. From 1960 until 1975 Master Saotome taught at the World Aikido Headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. Mitsugi Saotome is the chief instructor of the Aikido Shobukan Dojo in Washington, D.C. and supervisory instructor for more than 70 affiliated dojo of the international association, Aikido Schools of Ueshiba.

For additional details see the ASU Handbook, The Principles of Aikido and articles on AikiWeb.