Respiratory practice ~ Aikido // Katsugen Undo


Workshops Aikido / Katsugen Undo in Amsterdam by Romaric Rifleu
Calendar 2024/2025

11 - 13  OCTOBER  2024

24 - 26  JANUARY  2025

4 - 6  APRIL  2025

For more information please click here

Katsugen Kai Amsterdam

Katsugen Kai
alligraphy by Itsuo Tsuda Sensei

Regular practice




Respiratory practice ~ Aikido

Katsugen Undo


Respiratory practice ~ Aikido



Respiratory practice ~ Aikido

Katsugen Undo



Respiratory practice ~ Aikido

Katsugen Undo

Monthly contribution

Aikido: €35,00

Katsugen Undo: €25,00
Regular Katsugen Undo practice is only possible after attending a workshop in one of the dojos of the Itsuo Tsuda School.

Aikido + Katsugen Undo: €50,00
(bundle discount)

First Aikido session is free.
First Aikido month is discounted ~ discovery fee €25,00

Okido Yoga Dojo
van Ostadestraat 387, 1074 VX Amsterdam [map]

email: [click here]


Workshops Aikido and K.U. by Régis Soavi Sensei
Calendar 2024/2025


27 - 29 September 2024 

13 - 15 December 2024 

7 - 9 March 2025 

16 - 18 May 2024


13 - 15 September 2024 

22 - 24 November 2024 

7 - 9 February 2025 

11 - 13 April 2025

"Yuki Hō"

25 - 27 October 2024 

10 - 12 January 2025 

21 - 23 March 2025 

6 - 8 June 2025


11 - 13 October 2024

- Summer seminar -
(Mas d'Azil)

14 - 27 July 2024

13 - 26 July 2025


For more information please contact the dojos.

Itsuo Tsuda Sensei

Itsuo Tsuda was born in 1914. At 16, he rebelled against his father's wish that he take up the family business (being the older son); he left his family in search of freedom of thought. Later, reconciled with his father, he came to France in 1934 and studied under Marcel Granet and Marcel Mauss until 1940, when he returned to Japan . After 1950, he became interested in Japanese culture, studying the recitation of "Noh" with Master Hosada, the "Seitai" with Master Noguchi, and Aikido with Master Ueshiba. Itsuo Tsuda came back to Europe in 1970 to disseminate the practice of "Regenerating Movement" and his ideas about the "Ki". He died in 1984.


Regis Soavi Sensei

Régis Soavi Sensei begins to practice a traditional and supple type of judo around the age of twelve. In the 1970s, he starts training in aïkido with Nocquet, Tamura and Noro, later becoming an instructor in the schools of those three Masters. In the same period he also teaches within the French Aïkikaï Federation. In 1973 he encounters Master Itsuo Tsuda in Paris and begins to follow his teaching, practising with him Aïkido and Katsugen Undo ( the Regenerating Movement) for ten years, until Master Tsuda’s death. Parallel to that, Tatsuzawa Sensei introduces him to the arts of his school, the Bushûden Kiraku-ryu: Iaïdo (the sword), Kenjutsu and Jujitsu. During the same decade, still taking part in a number of seminars and courses, he has the opportunity of meeting several Masters among whom Kisshomaru Ueshiba, Yamaguchi, Kobayashi as well as Shirata for example.
About 1980, he turns away for good from this official vision of Aïkido, as Master Tsuda’s teaching is much more deeply in accordance with the path he wants to follow: the practice of the “Non-Doing” through Aïkido and Katsugen Undo. As a matter of fact, one of the distinctive elements of this teaching is the link established by Itsuo Tsuda himself between the understanding of Aïkido he developed throughout the years he spent with the founder Ô Sensei Ueshiba on the one hand, and the practice of Katsugen Undo he had already discovered with Master Noguchi, the founder of Seitai, on the other hand. With Master Tsuda these two practices become so to speak complementary.
In 1982, having met his Master’s approval to do so, Régis Soavi decides to dedicate himself, as a professional, solely to Aïkido and Katsugen Undo ( he had already been teaching Aïkido since 1975). In the following years, he founds his first dojo in Toulouse, in the south of France, and starts holding seminars in Paris, Toulouse and Milano.
At present, he teaches at the dojo Tenshin and still conducts seminars regularly at the dojos in Milano, Paris and Toulouse, and more occasionally in Rome, Amsterdam and Jerusalem.

Respiratory practice
of Master Tsuda

Kokyu Nage

  "The word Kokyu may be translated into English by respiration, since Ko is equivalent to breathing out, and Kyu to breathing in. It's the union of these two phenomena which engenders respiration. But for Tsuda Sensei, the word "Kokyu" has an unsuspected scope extending far beyond the biochemical or gymnastic conception of respiration. He often said that, through respiration, "Aïkido is an art of becoming children again... without being childish”.

    How should one understand this statement from a technical point of view? It's simple. When someone stronger than yourself seizes you round the waist from behind so that you cannot sit down, what should you do? Throw the person forward so that you're free to sit down? As he is heavier than you are, you cannot do that. What then? Tsuda Sensei answers : " become a child ". I see a wonderful shell lying on the beach and I bend forward to pick it up. I forget about whoever is still holding me tight from behind. The ki flows out from myself towards the shell, whereas before, it was blocked at the thought of the opponent who is holding me so strongly. He then becomes light and tumbles over my shoulders...

The idea of throwing someone forward induces resistance. In the action of the child, there is the joy of picking up the shell, and that's what makes one forget the presence of the opponent.

To forget the opponent, although still aware that he is there : that isn't a very easy thing to do. The more one tries to forget, the more one thinks about it. It's the joyful flow of ki which makes one forget everything...

The practise of Aïkido implies, therefore, that you adopt the principle of non-resistance, in the sense that one neither pushes nor pulls the opponent ; one avoids acting in a way likely to arouse an antagonistic force. Another implication is the principle of the non-opponent. For as soon as we think about the opponent, our ki is absorbed by him, our respiration/attention is blocked. But in order not to be absorbed by the opponent, one must have a certain power of respiration.

Master Ueshiba often said :

" Aïkido is an art whereby people unite and become separate again ( musunde hanatsu ) ".
I have found this alternance between union and separation, in the act of inhaling and exhaling.

First comes the defender's inhalation ( I use the word defender for the time being, though there are no such terms as defender or attacker in Aïkido ), which initiates the action. I raise my hand as I inhale, and the attacker immediately follows my movement, raising his own hand. There is a synchronization of the intake of breath of both partners, at the same time as a coordination of movements. This reciprocal interaction is, I believe, one of the distinctive features of Aïkido. One doesn't find it in Judo or in Kendo, where each person breathes independently from the other and watches for an opportunity to attack the other.

At first, this interaction isn't at all obvious. One only performs a certain number of movements one has learned. After some time, I realized that there is a coordination of movements in Aïkido. That means, if I raise my bokken, the attacker raises his at the same moment. In Kendo, one doesn't have to keep to this conventional form of training. If one person raises the shinai, the other may counter by swiping horizontally the abdomen.

Why do both partners make identical or symetrical movements in Aïkido? After all, one can't really ask one's opponent : " would you be so kind as to raise your hand at the same time as I raise mine, please? " For such a thing to be possible, there must be a compelling force which makes the partner act as one wishes. I have found this force in the intake of breath, prior even to the action itself. Once the fusion has taken place and the act is in progress, breathing out follows naturally, which allows the flow of ki. One then sees the throwing forward of the partner, etcetera, as a visible form of the technique.

Respiration is, in my experience, the very foundation of Aïkido.

extract from Bushido Magazine


Katsugen Undo


The regenerating movement is done through the momentary suspension of our voluntary system.
It requires no special knowledge or technique. On the contrary, we must leave that aside. To seek a
pre-determined goal only hinders the natural evolution of our nature.

The principle that we have formulated is thus :


For the person who sees the regenerating movement for the first time, the sight is rather surprising. As we are accustomed to movements that are more or less controlled, governed by the intellect or studied, any movement that falls outside the domain of conscious control suggests to us illness, madness, or hypnotism; the regenerating movement seems to lend itself to such interpretations.

In reality, it is quite different. During the practice of movement, our consciousness, instead of being anxious like that of someone ill, remains calm and serene. Instead of being confused, like that of a madman, it remains lucid. Instead of being circumscribed and limited like that of someone under hypnosis, it remains free.

One does not perform the regenerating movement. It is set in motion spontaneously, in response to the needs of the organism.

As those needs vary from one individual to another and for the same individual, from one moment to another, there can be no uniform, pre-programmed movement. Because of this, there is nothing easier than to slip away from what is natural, by adding a few "seductive ingredients".

Theoretically, there exist two forms of regenerating movement: the first already present in every individual consists of natural reactions of our organism such as: yawning, sneezing, movements and agitation during sleep, etc. The second was developed by Master Haruchika Noguchi, a half century ago. This is the form we practice.

To be initiated to the practice of the movement, it is preferable to have reached a certain degree of mental maturity and that all other proposed solutions, be felt to be inadequate. It must not be imposed on others, not even on your family, and not just any time. It is essential that the desire germinate in the inner self for a return to something natural. One mustn't pick fruit before it is ripe.

The regenerating movement is not an exterior acquisition. It points the way to a deeper discovery of oneself. This way is not a straight road to paradise, but a twisting path.

It is up to each of us with his own responsibility, to discover our own oneness of being.

As the body becomes more sensitive, one can experience some perturbing sensations, which can repel those who lack a good initial understanding.

The movement, after reaching a certain level of intensity, gradually becomes calmer. It becomes more subtle. Our respiration becomes more profound. Finally the movement fuses together with the movement of daily life, becoming so natural that there is no need to do anything special for it no more. The terrain has been normalized.

This normalization is not only physical, but psychic as well. A new perspective is created as our aptitude develops for that fusion of sensitivity which affects human relationships and our reactions to life around us. If this fusion enlarges our open-mindedness, we reach the state of non-body and non-mind.
We can then discover that man is fundamentally free..

Itsuo Tsuda



Simple as Breath
Meeting Régis Soavi's Aikido and the “Respiratory Practice” of Master Tsuda.

Hello, Illness
An interview with Régis Soavi about Katsugen Undo (or Regenerating Movement)

These articles were issued in the Italian magazine Arti d'Oriente in February 1999 and May 2000.
They are transcription of two interview of Régis Soavi made in Milano by Monica Rossi, a journalist in the magazine.