RIP Ikeda Masatomi - Message from ACSA President

Written on June 23, 2021

We are saddened by the passing of Ikeda Masatomi Shihan 7th Dan.
Hereby, we share the letter of mr. Hansruedi Nef,
President of ACSA.

Dear friends,

Today I received the sad news of the death of Ikeda Sensei. His family asked me to inform you. Ikeda Sensei died this afternoon (Japan time). His sister, Fumiko, was with him in his last hour.

Many of us have been fortunate to know Ikeda Masatomi Sensei personally. He came to Switzerland in 1977 as the Technical Director of our association. Thanks to his great technical ability and his personality, he was able to create the structures for the successful spread of Aikido in Switzerland. He introduced a system of regular and coordinated courses. He developed a teaching and examination system to which many dojos continue to orient their training. Above all, however, he succeeded in increasing the quality of Aikido in Switzerland as a whole. In addition to his duties in Switzerland, he soon took on tasks in other European countries and thus created a network that continues to this day. Due to an illness, he had to give up his activities as Technical Director of the ACSA and as an Aikido teacher in 2002. A year later, he returned to Japan.

When I first saw Ikeda Sensei in 1977, I was impressed by the way he looked. And I was excited about his style of Aikido. Precise, powerful and effective. That impressed us, young aikidokas, enormously. At the beginning of his activities in Switzerland, he did not have his own dojo. Rather, he visited the various ACSA dojos in Switzerland at regular intervals. Fortunately, there were quite a number of dojos in Eastern Switzerland, where Ikeda Sensei taught regularly. This usually resulted in several opportunities for training with him per month.

Of course, like most of you, I have a lot of personal memories of experiences with Ikeda Sensei. In joint training sessions, car trips, courses, demonstrations, discussions and travels. I will certainly take the time to remember as much as possible. For me, he will remain a great role model as an Aikido teacher. He accepted students as they were, encouraged and challenged them in equal measure and assessed them on the basis of their prerequisites and abilities.

These few lines can neither depict the full meaning that Ikeda Sensei has for us, nor properly appreciate his work for the ACSA. I am grateful to him from the bottom of my heart for his patience and everything I was able to learn from him.

Hansruedi Nef
President ACSA

June 21st, 2021