I’m writing this to address the interesting topic of how we nurture our Junior akidoists in understanding Aikido and competition, with the purpose of my own reason to answering a bugging question that has been burning a hole in my head!

The question one of my students asked me;

“Sempai, can we play the game without winning?”

This little girl has no idea the philosophical implication behind that question. My mind said yes, and of course I reinvented the game a little to not include winning, but that got me thinking deeply on how engrained competition is with in our human nature; is it natural? Is it because of our social conditioning? Is it because of our desperate need for approval from our peers? What about lion cubs? They wrestle in nature but there is no winning or losing there. So many questions ran through my head…

So I decided to try and organize my thoughts through writing this article.

O Sensei the founder of Aikido did not believe in competition.

A famous quote of his “There are no contests in the art of peace. A tru