The Aikido inspiration to safety and efficiency: an investigation on forward roll impact forces

Aikido is a Japanese martial art inspired by harmony and intelligent exploitation of human body movements, a consequence of which is believed to be a minimisation of impacts. This study measures the effectiveness of aikido-specific movements to minimise impact forces, and arguably the risk of injuries, in person-to-floor contact. In one experiment, we measured a significant reduction of impact forces with the ground for aikido experts during a forward roll in comparison to untrained participants. This first initial result encourages further studies of aikido techniques in areas such as safety and efficacy in sport exercise, safety during full body motion involving falls and impacts, transfer to human-robot interaction and training of elderly people.