Shioda Gozo – the Founder of Yoshinkan Aikido

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Shioda Gozo

Soke Shioda Gozo was born in 1915, the son of a renowned medical doctor. From the age of 18 he studied aikido under Morihei Ueshiba Sensei, the founder of Aikido. For a period of eight years he dedicated himself solely to the practice of aikido and as a result developed and eventually mastered the art himself. Even as a student he displayed the clear cut technique and extraordinary vigour he displayed in the latter years of his life.

The tremendous interest shown in aikido since the war probably dates back to 1954 when, under the auspices of the Life Extension Society, an exhibition of Japanese martial arts was organized in Tokyo. Many masters of Japanese budo participated. Soke Shioda Gozo’s outstanding performance resulted in his attaining first prize. The following year, with the support of many sponsors, the first Aikido Yoshinkan was established and Soke Shioda Gozo was placed in charge.

Yoshinkan Aikido was first taught in the Tsukudo Hachiman area of Tokyo and from there spread to Yoyogi, Koganei, and eventually Kamiochiai, Shinjuku where the present Honbu Dojo now stands.

Shioda Gozo with Mike Tyson

Yoshinkan Aikido is taught nationally in the Education Department, Police Department and to the general public. There are approcimately 100 schools throughout Japan. Yoshinkan Aikido is also taught internationally and is firmly based in many countries. Dignitaries who have visited the honbu dojo include Robert Kennedy and his wife in 1962, Princess Alexandra from England in 1962 and Crown Prince Hironomiya of Japan in May 1987. These all met Soke Shioda Gozo and watched his demonstrations.

Shioda Gozo with his students

In 1989 Soke Shioda Gozo, with the assistance of his son Shioda Yasuhisa, Dr. Fred Haynes, Mr. Mark Baker and Mr. Jacques Payet, began to work towards the creation of the International Yoshinkai Aikido Federation (IYAF). There was a direct need for a federation as the hierarchical structure of Yoshinkan in each country was causing a stagnation. Through the creation of the federation the honbu dojo could designate instructors directly. These instructors could have a direct link with the honbu dojo, strengthening the relationship between individuals and the honbu dojo and thus freeing the information flow.

By 1990, the IYAF was fully established by Soke Shioda Gozo.

On the 17th of July, 1994, Soke Shioda Gozo passed away at the age of 78. He gave to all the dynamic art of Yoshinkan Aikido coupled with a clear effective teaching method, which if practiced with the correct spirit, should ensure the continued growth of strong Yoshinkan technique into the future.


Born September 9th 1915 Tokyo, Yotsuya
1932 Began training under Morihei Ueshiba Sensei
1941 Graduated from university. Assigned to an administrative position during WW2. Was posted to China, Taiwan and Borneo.
1946 Returned to Japan
1950 Began teaching Aikido
1954 Entered the All Japan Kobudo demonstration and won prize for the most outstanding demonstration.
1955 Established Aikido Yoshinkan
1957 Developed Senshusei program for The Tokyo Metropolitan Police.
1961 Received 9th dan from Morihei Ueshiba Sensei.
1983 Received the rank of Hanshi from the International Budo Federation
1985 Received 10th dan from the International Budo Federation
1988 Was recognized for service to aikido by the International Budo Federation
1990 Established the International Yoshinkan Aikido Federation (IYAF) together with his son Yasuhisa Shioda.
1990 Established the International Senshusei program to help develop International Yoshinkan Instructors.
2008 Yasuhisa Shioda established the AYF, Aikido Yoshinkai Foundation, to unite the Domestic and International Communities of Yoshinkan Aikido in memory of his father’s dream.
Passed away on July 17th 1994