About Nihon Goshin Aikido

Master Shodo Morita

The art of Nihon Goshin Aikido was founded by Master Shodo Morita and taught by him starting in the 1940’s at his dojo in Chitose, a town located east of the city of Sapporo, on the island of Hokkaido, Japan. Master Morita was probably born in the year 1900 or shortly before that, making him a younger contemporary of many well-known martial artists of the day, especially those involved in Aiki arts. It is likely that Master Morita may have encountered and possibly studied with the likes of Sokaku Takeda and Yoshida Kotaro (Daito-ryu Aiki-jujitsu), Morihei Ueshiba (Aikido) and Jigoro Kano (Kodokan Judo) during his training years, but we have no evidence that there was any formal training relationship with any of them. In addition to training in the Aiki-style arts, Master Morita also trained in judo, ju-jitsu, kobudo (weapons), karate, and the esoteric arts.

After mastering these arts, Master Morita realized that, although each was highly effective, no single style was complete. Each art focused on a separate element of self-defense: The karate arts focused on striking. The judo arts focused on throwing. The jujitsu arts focused on joint locks. Master Morita incorporated principles and techniques of each system into a new system which became Nihon Goshin Aikido. It is significant to note that he did not merely choose the best techniques from each system, but a variety of techniques, recognizing that what works well for one person may not be effective for another person due to height and anatomical differences. Nihon Goshin Aikido is a highly effective martial art due to its variety of principles.

Shihan Richard Bowe

Mr. Bowe was stationed  on the island of Hokkaido during his military career. While there he reviewed a variety of systems, including karate and Aikido (Ueshiba style), but, due to his previous training, he felt that, although he sought in a martial art. He continued his search until he came across Shodo Morita. Mr. Bowe was impressed with the ease with which Master Morita’s students were able to throw him. Mr. Bowe trained with both Shodo Morita, who awarded him a black belt, and with Shodo Morita’s adopted son, Tominosuke Nara, who took over the system after Master Morita died.

Mr. Bowe returned to the United States and began teaching Nihon Goshin Aikido in 1962 at a local karate school. On September 12, 1963, he opened his own dojo in Guttenberg, New Jersey. In 1976 Mr. Bowe was promoted to 5th degree black belt by Master Nara. Shortly after that Master Nara retired from public teaching. As far as we know, Nihon Goshin Aikido is no longer taught in Japan. However, the Black Belts from Mr. Bowe’s dojo and the students of his students are teaching in numerous dojos throughout the United States. Mr. Bowe no longer teaches the Art. He turned the Art over to Sensei Robert B. MacEwen JR. on 11/01/2018

Shihan Robert B. MacEwen, Jr.

Shihan Robert B. MacEwen, Jr. is the director and chief instructor of the Aikido School of Self Defense holding a fifth degree black belt in Nihon Goshen Aikido. Along with Aikido, he also holds a fifth degree black belt in Jujitsu, and a first degree black belt in Koga-Ryu Ninjutsu and Karate with over 45 years of martial arts experience. Shihan MacEwen studied directly under Shihan Richard A. Bowe and the late John Lehman. Today Shihan MacEwen is one of the top rated practicioners of Aikido in America. His explosive style has been recognized by Martial Arts publications and organizations throughout the world. His dedicated approach to teaching and his outstanding skill have earned him a place in the National Martial Arts Hall Of Fame four times. In the past, Shihan MacEwen has worked in the motion picture industry as an actor and choreographer. He has also produced fourteen Martial Arts dvds which sold over hundreds of thousands all over the world, with four star ratings.