How to Choose your Bokken – Case Studies & Advice

The choice of the Bokken

And how it influences the Aikido practice

A few month ago, I spoke about wooden weapons from the perspective of traditional craftsmanship. The Bokken will still take the center of this article, but this time, I would like to change the angle and talk about how the choice of the Bokken influences the practice itself. However, I do not presume to give any advice whatsoever. I myself am just an ordinary practitioner and made my own choice that I stand by. I simply want to share with you some observations based on experience of practice, but above this, on a large experience regarding the weapons themselves. The advice and choice of your teacher however, are indisputable and my observations reflect only my personal view, based on my personal experience. There is just one thing I would like to clarify: I practiced at least a few hours with all the Bokken that I mention in this article.

Koryu Bokken

From top to bottom: Keishi Ryu, Iwama Ryu, Jiki Shinkage Ryu

Read more…

Rahel Bünzli November 4, 2016 4 comments Aikido, Comparison (how to choose), Equipment

Embroideries on Martial Arts Equipment

Embroideries on Martial Arts Equipment

Embroidery Workshop & Translation Practices at Seido

Having one’s training’s cloths embroidered is the most common thing in Japan. However, westerners often know just little about this topic and some struggle with making the right choice. That is why in this article we are going to talk about embroidery content, show some common mistakes and give advice on how to avoid them and last but not least, explain how we make them at Seido.

Aikido equipment Embroidery

Embroidery on martial arts equipment

Read more…

How to choose your Hakama

Comparison: How to choose your Hakama

For all Aikidoka, Kendoka and Iaidoka!

Choosing ones Hakama is often a complex decision. Is this your first Hakama or do you have some experience already? Which fabric corresponds best? What kind of finish? What quality at what price? We will try to answer these questions in this article by presenting the different types of fabric, the different finishes, how to choose your size and discussing the price range for each model.

Cotton Indigo Hakama

Seido Aizome Cotton Hakama

Read more…

Seido’s Story – Who are we ? Where are we coming from ?

Our Story – Who are we ? Where are we coming from ?

And where are we going to ?

Our story began in the summer of 2005, when the founder of BudoExport and Seido, Jordy, arrived in Japan. 19 years of age at the time and without university degree, he devoted one year to intensive Aikido practice before enrolling in a three year study course focusing on Japanese and Japanese culture in France and Japan. During those years, he continued to spend much of his time in different Dojos, also getting into Kendo and Judo.

The whole team, summer 2015

The whole team, summer 2015

Read more…

Jordy Delage February 13, 2016 5 comments Non classé

The Questionable Origin of the Majority of Martial Arts Clothing

The Questionable Origin of the Majority of Martial Arts Clothing

Moral Arrangements We All Make When Facing this Sad Truth

As Budoka, most of us feel having moral values superior to those only practicing “sports”, we like to believe that we are better. Are you—as Budoka—more concerned by human conditions and human rights? Are you concerned with the origin of the products you buy and wear? Take your Dogi, your belt and have a look at the label. Pakistan? Bangladesh? China? Japan? Let us examine under what conditions your equipment is manufactured.

Travail enfant bangladesh

Child labor in a textile factory in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Source :

Read more…

Iaito – Origin & Manufacture of the Japanese Sword Replica

The origin and manufacture of the Iaito, replica of the Japanese sword, the Katana

Visits to the workshops Minosaka and Jisei

The origin of the Iaito does not date back very far, to the 60s or so. The creation of this tool for practice was primarily driven by new laws and regulations, enacted after World War ll. Since then, with the experience of many trades in the manufacture of the Nihonto (Japanese sword), some Japanese craftsmen have developed an expertise, still unparalleled outside the archipelago.
We went to the region called Gifu to visit the workshops Minosaka and Nihon Token (Jisei), two of the most famous in Japan. Familiar with this topic for some years, we had many questions to ask – which we are summarizing here.

Iaito Minosaka

Read more…

Rahel Bünzli December 17, 2015 2 comments Craftsmanship Tags: , , , ,

How to choose your Aikido belt

How to choose your Aikido belt

A short guide

Many practitioners choose their Aikido belt by chance, one takes what one finds. This may work out, at least for a certain time. However, white belts usually start falling apart after one or two years of practice, black belts are often too thick and uncomfortable under a Hakama. So how to choose one’s belt? Here is the answer to this question.

White and Black Belt Seido - Soft

Soft belt Seido, available in black and white.

Read more…

Rahel Bünzli December 4, 2015 Post Comment Aikido, Comparison (how to choose), Equipment Tags:

The Sashiko fabric – Aikido Gi Traditional manufacturing

Traditional manufacturing: The Sashiko fabric

The core of the Keikogi manufacturing

The Sashiko fabric, also called “rice grain” fabric in the west is the core of the Keikogi (Kimono) manufacturing and is worn in Aikido, Judo and also Kendo. Although there are many prestigious designers worldwide, there are only a few artisans who are capable of weaving a high quality Sashiko fabric. In this article we will open the doors to Seido’s partner workshops, the only two workshops in the world to master the entire production line from weaving to sewing, to show you how your Keikogi is made.

Old loom (60s ) still in use.

Old loom (60s ) still in use.

Read more…

Jordy Delage July 27, 2015 Post Comment Equipment

How to choose your Aikido Gi (Kimono for Aikido) – Comparative

Comparative: How to choose your Aikido Gi (Kimono)

The different Seido models

Choosing a Dogi is not a simple task, especially if you are a beginner. Light-, standard-, heavy-weight, traditional cut, modern cut, original cut: There are many models and choosing the one that best suits you does not only depend on the thickness of the fabric! Here we will discuss the different Seido models, fully representative of all the existing “Made in Japan” Aikido Gi. However, low-end Dogi made outside of Japan are not to be part of the topic.

Seido Super High End Aikidogi WA800

Read more…

Rahel Bünzli July 3, 2015 4 comments Equipment

Handmade Bokken, Jo & Tanto – At the Aramaki Workshop

Handmade Bokken, Jo, Tanto, …

At the workshop Aramaki Bokuto Mokojo

Enjoying the quiet summer months, we travelled across Japan to visit the officially recognized workshops manufacturing wooden weapons in Japan: “Aramaki Budogu Mokojo”, “Nidome Bokuto Seisakujo“, “Horinouchi Noboru Seisakujo” and “Matsuzashi Bokuto Seisakujo”. These last four companies fabricating wooden weapons are all located in “Miyakonojo”, a small town on the peninsula of Kyushu (southern Japan), enclosed by two mountain ranges. In this article we will show all the steps of the making of a Bokken, guided through by an artisan of the workshop Aramaki Bokuto Mojojo, led by master Aramaki Yasuo, the 3rd.

Workshop Aramaki, manufacture of Bokken Jo Tanto

Read more…

Jordy Delage June 26, 2015 Post Comment Craftsmanship, Equipment Tags: ,
1 2 3