It is acknowledge that first Aikido dojo*2 in Japan was established in Shingu in 1928. The founder visited Shingu whenever the opportunity arose. Before his death, he instructed and guided the head of the Kumano Juku Dojo, Mr. Michio Hikitsuchi who in return devoted himself wholeheartedly to Ueshiba Sensei and took him to pray at Hongu Grand Shrine well over a hundred times. The Founder initiated the Michio Hikitsuchi into the secret mysteries of Aikido, and in the year of his death in 1969 Mr. Hikitsuchi received the rank of tenth dan*3 in his capacity as a direct disciple under the Founder Morihei Ueshiba.
Thousands of practitioners from around the globe come to study under Hikitsuchi Sensei at the Aikido Kumano Juku Dojo, some for only a day, and others for over 10 years. The french translator of KFM, Thierry Le Gall was first introduced to Aikido and started practicing after arriving in Shingu. After practicing Aikido for six years he has come to believe that he was guided here with the purpose to study Aikido.
If you would like to come to watch or experience the practice here, don't hesitate to contact the Kumano Juku Dojo to make arrangements.
*1 Sensei: An honorary title placed after the name of a teacher
*2 Dojo: A building or gym where martial arts are practiced
*3 Dan: A ranking over the black belt level. A tenth degree black belt.
Aikido Kumano Juku Dojo/Motokaji machi 1-5-1/Shingu shi /Wakayama ken/Japan§647-0005
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