A Short Biography of Minoru Kanetsuka Shihan 8th Dan
(Aikikai Foundation, Tokyo/Technical Director BAF)
Born in Tokyo in 1939, Minoru Kanetsuka took up Aikido while at university (1957 – 1961) under Gozo Shioda and Masatake Fujita. In 1964 he travelled to India and then to Nepal, where he spent 6 years during which he taught Aikido to bodyguards attached to the royal household. On leaving Nepal he spent some time in Calcutta, where he taught self-defence at a police training school. In 1971 he moved to Britain, becoming the assistant of Kazuo Chiba, who was at that time the Technical Director of the Aikikai of Great Britain (later to be renamed the British Aikido Federation).
When Chiba Sensei left Britain in 1976 Kanetsuka Sensei became the Technical Director of the British Aikido Federation, and as such was delegated responsibility from the Aikikai Foundation for developing Aikido in the UK.
"There is no doubt that Kanetsuka Sensei’s teaching is highly individual, though this individuality does not stem from a desire to depart from main-line Aikido so much as upon his insistence on mastering basic, orthodox Aikido principles. His emphasis is always on controlling one’s partner (i.e. attacker) with the minimum of physical force, from the very first moment of contact to final submission. For his sensitive Aikido he emphasizes the need for a flexible body and over the years he has acquired a flexibility that is the envy of many students much younger than he".
Written by: Peter Megann