Skip navigation


Kawaraban No. 18


Questions to the Tendokan office

Which persons will actually be called uchideshi ?

Within the world of budo and the arts originally this word indicates people, who are trained to take over a teacher’s techniques and his spirit. They are living in the dojo or in the teacher’s house, are at his side, look after his well being, and do not miss any actions of the teacher, which is meant as training for mind and body. Shimizu sensei, who came indeed from judo (4. dan), became uchideshi of aikido master Ueshiba, when he was asked for it. During his uchideshi time Shimizu sensei lived in the dojo and took care of all of his teacher’s matters. On one hand side he was master Ueshiba`s uke during practice, on the other hand he was teaching the beginners.

Early in the morning he also had to take care of the office works, because the office clerk was not yet in. From early morning to late in the evening he was constantly busy having no free time. On top of that, after a couple of years external lessons have been added – at the aikido departments of universities and companies. One of these locations was the aikido club of the parliament in Nagatacho, where he was teaching the classes as a teacher of the first generation. Sonoda, the foreign minister of those days, was head of parliament of the first generation and later a supporter of Shimizu sensei.

Presently Kotaro Nagai is the uchideshi of Tendokan.

© Translation by Birgit Lauenstein 10/2002