- Hardcover: 256 pages
- Publisher: Lorenz Books; 1 edition (27 July 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0754817482
- ISBN-13: 978-0754817482
- Product Dimensions: 23.9 x 2.5 x 30.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1 customer review)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,615,058 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
T'ai Chi and Aikido: Learn the Way of Spiritual Harmony with Two Ancient Martial Arts That Develop Mental Focus, Strength, Suppleness and Stamina Hardcover – 27 Jul 2007
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Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
As the title suggests, this book is divided into two nearly equal halves, delving into Tai Chi and Aikido seperately, each treated with reverence by an authoritative expert.
Not knowing a lick about Tai Chi, I found the first half enlightening as far as the wealth of background information. Practicing Tai Chi is dealt with in a holistic manner, teaching a way of living, much more so than teaching a martial way. Everything is touched upon: spirituality, diet, sex, entertainment, meditation, followed by a basic form, which is laid out in painstaking photographic and descriptive detail.
As expected in dealing with the martial arts, the Tai Chi section is heavily invested in large, clear photographs on good paper. Arrows are marked in the photographs denoting movement. Even so, I found it nigh impossible to duplicate the form as outlined. I'm sure this is a capable introduction to Tai Chi, but I found it lacking. I plan to investigate more through other titles.
In reading the Aikido section, I found myself in familiar territory. A brief (and I emphasize brief) introduction is given to the history of Aikido, followed by a great deal of theory, and copious amounts of photographs and individual technique demonstrations.
DO NOT TRY THESE TECHNIQUES WITHOUT AN INSTRUCTOR.
As explained in the book (but not emphasized enough in my opinion), Aikido techniques can break, rupture and otherwise destroy joints and bones if done incorrectly or with excessive force. The Aikido half wraps up with a few demonstrated techniques for self-defense against 'standard' attacks. I saw nothing new or imaginitive in the author's responses to these.
For a good introduction to Aikido I would refer you to Principles of Aikido by Mitsugi Saotome. Don't waste your time with this book.