Difference Between Aikido and Karate (with Table)

The two most popular martial arts around the world that are practiced by many people are Aikido and Karate. The martial art concepts of these two martial arts are totally opposite from each other. Although they are different forms of martial arts, they share many similarities between them. 

The difference between Aikido and Karate is that Aikido is classified as a ‘soft’ martial arts while on the other hand Karate is considered to be a ‘hard’ martial arts. Also, the base principle of Aikido is to kill an opponent which the same as the main concept of martial arts. 

The similarity that Aikido and Karate share is the techniques. The techniques used in both of them are based on triangular, circular or square movements. The training of the students is done differently but the evolvement of techniques is mostly the same. 

Also, the levels of fighting abilities and strategies are very similar to each other in Karate and Aikido. The first level comprises of the ability of a student to control his/her opponent by movements or a combination of movements and so on the levels progress.

Comparison Table Between Aikido and Karate

Parameters of ComparisonAikidoKarate
Developed byAikido was developed by Morihei Ueshiba.Karate was developed by Itosu Ankō, Arakaki Seishō, Sakukawa Kanga, Matsumura Sōkon and Higaonna Kanryō.
Country of originAikido first originated in the country Japan.Karate first originated in the Ryukyu Kingdom which is a part of modern Japan.
Main usesThe main use of learning Aikido is for self defense and also to defuse a violent or an aggressive situation.The main use of learning Karate is for self defense and also striking and attacking an opponent.
Main focusThe main focus of Aikido is Grappling and softness.The main focus of Karate is striking.
Predominant movesSome of the predominant moves of Aikido are standing holds and locks, soft blocking, takedowns using joint locks and utilizing pressure points and nerves.Some of the predominant moves of Karate are elbow strikes, knee strikes, punching, kicking, palm-heel strikes, knife hands and spear hands.

What is Aikido?

Aikido is a famous martial arts form which originated in the country Japan. Morihei Ueshiba was this martial arts founder. It is a combination of peace, harmony and self defense. This art form is said to provide a physical and psychological balance to the individual who practices it. 

The basic concept of Aikido is not to rather fight but to diffuse an aggressive and violent situation. To one’s surprise, this martial arts form actually condemns any violence. It as an alternative recommends it’s practitioners to use the opponent’s weight against himself and defeat him. 

To do this, it is compulsory to practice how to discern the direction of an attack coming towards the practitioner and use all the momentum he can get to use the attack of the opponent to defeat the opponent.

What is Karate?

Karate is a famous martial arts form that originated in the Ryukyu Kingdom which is now a part of modern Japan. Its founders are Sakukawa Kanga, Matsumura Sōkon, Itosu Ankō, Arakaki Seishō and Higaonna Kanryō. This martial arts form utilizes knee strikes, kicking, punching, elbow strikes and other techniques to take down the opponent. 

Karate has a lot of different techniques and styles. To take down an opponent or to defeat them, the practitioners of this martial arts form uses a series of postures or also called kata which can be either defensive or offensive. 

The students first learn to focus all their power in their punches and kicks so that when they use it against their opponents, they have a high impact on them. The modern Karate techniques not only use striking but also restraints ,throws, grappling and joint-locks.

Main Differences Between Aikido and Karate

  1. The main focus of Aikido is Grappling and softness while the main focus of Karate is striking.
  2. Aikido was developed by Morihei Ueshiba whereas Karate was developed by Itosu Ankō, Arakaki Seishō, Sakukawa Kanga, Matsumura Sōkon and Higaonna Kanryō.
  3. The predominant moves of Aikido are standing holds and locks, soft blocking, takedowns using joint locks and utilizing pressure points and nerves while the predominant moves of Karate are elbow strikes, knee strikes, punching, kicking, palm-heel strikes, knife hands and spear hands.
  4. The uses of learning Aikido are self defense and also to defuse a violent or an aggressive situation while the main uses of learning Karate are self defense and also striking and attacking an opponent.
  5. Aikido originated in the country Japan whereas Karate originated in the Ryukyu Kingdom which is a part of modern Japan.

Conclusion

Both Aikido and Karate are martial art forms that originated from Japan. In comparison to Karate, Aikido is a newer form of martial arts. The main difference between the two is that Karate is considered to be a hard martial arts while Aikido is considered to be a soft martial arts. As Karate is a hard arts it mainly focuses on striking, punching and kicking the opponent. 

On the other hand, as Aikido is a soft arts it mainly focuses on grappling, holds and throws. Due to the category Aikido is in, it is often thought to be a passive technique while it’s the opposite, it is actually a very dangerous martial arts form. But there is a similarity between Aikido and Karate which is the basis of their techniques that are square, circular and triangular movements. All students first start to practice and perform techniques in the square formation. 

After months of practice, they then progress to triangular formations and at the end to circular formations. The main purpose of learning Aikido is for self defense as well as to defuse a violent or an aggressive situation. The main purpose of learning Karate is also for self defense as well as for striking and attacking an opponent.

References

  1. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.2466/pms.1997.84.2.609
  2. http://www.lifesciencesite.com/lsj/life0904/206_11995life0904_1365_1371.pdf