Development Of Aikido
The Founder envisaged 4 elements to training to aid development .
The first of these is Kon No Keiko (魂 の稽古, spirited practice) this is the diamond element characterised by solid practice and strong grips. It represents the bodies bones.
Second is Ju No Keiko (柔 の稽古, gentle practice) this is the willow element characterised by flexibility and movement, this practice is soft and reasonably compliant. It represents the bodies flesh.
Third is Ryu No Keiko (流 の稽古, flowing practice) this is the stream element characterised by fluid practice similar to water this is often done with rapid movement and requires good ukemi. It represents the bodies blood.
Finally there is Ki No Keiko (気 の稽古, energy practice) this is the air element characterised by energetic practice which has no fixed form. It represents the bodies breath.
O Sensei said the ultimate form of aikido and budo is what he called Takemusu Aiki (武産合氣) the birth of martial technique through harmonizing energy. “the spontaneous generation of technique through blending movements”. Ideally all waza are exercises to help achieve this.