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Powerful technique and beautiful ukemi

One of Saito-sensei's closest students Hiroki Nemoto will teach at a seminar in Italy 10-11 of May 2003. I strongly recommend everybody who has the possibility to attend this seminar. Among us younger uchi-deshi in the Iwama-dojo there was always a race to get up and ask him to practice on Saturday evenings. His clear technique and powerful execution was a great inspiration for us all.

He was very close to Saito-sensei. When Saito-sensei was absent or when he had to finish class early due to his cancer treatment Nemoto-sensei filled in for him on many occasions. I recall one evening when Saito-sensei told us all that we no longer should refer to him as "Nemoto-sempai" but as "Nemoto-sensei". It was obvious that Saito-sensei considered Nemoto-sensei as a teacher in the Iwama-dojo.

Nemoto-sensei started Aikido under O-sensei as a child. He has also been a gymnast. That is one reason for his splendid ukemi.

I once asked him to reveal the secret about his graceful tobi-ukemi.

- Just fix your eyes in the ceiling and your body comes naturally, was his reply.

During Nemoto-senseis first visit to Europe in March the Swedish Budo- and Martial Arts Federation's annual meeting prevented me to attend the seminar. From what I've heard it was a great seminar. I have no possibility to attend this time either but I encourage all aikidoka to participate if they have a chance.

Jöran Fagerlund
Gothenburg, Sweden

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