Author: Dave Meindl
I started practicing Aikido in 2000. It instantly became one of my main interests. And the rest is history.

What Do the Pleats in the Aikido Hakama Mean?

hakama pleats

In his book Principles of Aikido, Mitsugi Saotome states that the seven pleats of the hakama (five in front and two in back) represent the seven virtues of Bushido. This claim may, in fact, have a degree of truth to it.

Posted in Aikido, Bushido, Hakama, Samurai

How to Earn a Hakama in Aikido

Principles of Aikido

Originally, in Aikido the hakama was not earned but rather was a part of the standard uniform a student of Aikido was expected to wear. The hakama were the pants of the uniform. In fact, that’s basically what the hakama

Posted in Aikido, Hakama

Japanese Aikido Gi

Aikido Gi

From what I gather, the two most popular Japanese makers of Aikido Gi are Iwata and Tozando. I’ve neither purchased nor worn a gi from either of these makers. So, I can’t attest to the quality. However, the general consensus

Posted in Aikido, Martial Arts Gear, Martial Arts Gi, Martial Arts Uniforms & Clothing

Aikido Weapons Bag

Weapons Bag

I’ve owned a few Aikido weapons bags over the years. The first few were pretty crappy (as were the bokken and jo). They were basically slip bags that were made of poorly stitched together low-quality fabric with no reinforcements. The

Posted in Aikido, Martial Arts Gear, Martial Arts Weapons, Martial Arts Weapons Bags Tagged with: , , , , ,

Japanese Kimono Hakama for Women

Pink women's hakama

Kawaii kimono sells a fairly large selection of women’s hakama for use with kimono. The hakama appear to be available in a variety of colors. I’ve never ordered from them. (Obviously. I’m a guy.) So, I can’t vouch for them.

Posted in Hakama for Sale, Hakama for Women Tagged with:

How to Tie a Hakama for Aikido

Tying a hakama - method 2

There are lots of ways to tie a hakama for Aikido and I’m sure most are equally valid. Here are the two most common and most distinct¬†methods. Each may have innumerable variations, but they’re all based on these two fundamental

Posted in Aikido, Hakama Tagged with: , ,

Nine Circles 800g Deluxe Sashiko Ori Aikido Gi

Aikido Gi

In September of 2008 I purchased a gi in Spain which, at that time, was the heaviest gi I had ever owned. It seemed like it was pretty solid. Seemed like it would last a long time. And I suppose

Posted in Aikido, Martial Arts Gear Tagged with: , , , , ,

How to Tie the Obi for Aikido

Koma musubi knot

Some would probably say that there’s a “proper” way to tie the obi for Aikido. Yet half of them would disagree on what the “proper” way is. Nevertheless, for practical reasons, there are certain characteristics that you’ll want your obi

Posted in Aikido Tagged with: , , ,


Himo are straps used for holding garments in place. On the hakama the himo are attached to the top of the hakama at the front and back.

Posted in Hakama



Obi is a belt or sash worn around the waist of a kimono, keikogi or other traditional japanese clothing. It can serve the functional purpose of keeping the kimono closed but can also be purely decorative.

Posted in Hakama