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Aikido Training in Morocco

Kototama is a sound practice that has been preserved in Japan for millennia. In Japanese, Kototama means "word-soul" or "spirit of the word". Inochi is a healing Practice. This art of sound practice has been deliberately hidden for millennia before being unveiled by Nakazono to the rest of the world. You must try to feel and live these "words". Together with discovering and deepening your understanding of the art of Kototama, come and get ready for a life-changing experience!

Meet the instructors

Hicham, Khalid, & Master Carlo
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  • Control aggression without inflicting injury
  • Martial arts taught with its theory, application, and spirit
  • Learn the art of peace, Aikido and the art of sound, Kototama
  • Train with Master Khalid, a second in line disciple of Morihei Ueshiba who created Aikido
  • Classes on herbal medicine, massages, calligraphy, Arabic, and sustainable farming
  • 3 delicious organic homemade meals
  • 3 nights' accommodation

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced


3 days with instruction in English
The organizer also speaks: Arabic, French
Group size: Maximum of 12 participants
Airport transfer included: Marrakesh Menara Airport
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Check-out Time:


  • Gym
  • Swimming pool (outdoor)
  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fireplace
  • Garden
  • Lobby
  • Luggage room / storage
  • Meditation garden
  • Multilingual staff
  • Picnic area
  • Smoke-free property
  • Special menu request
  • Terrace
  • Yoga deck
  • Free bicycle
  • Free parking
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Ironing / ironing board
  • Laundry
  • Medical assistance
  • Meeting room
  • Tour assistance
  • Outdoor shower

Koom Retreat Center features spring drinkable water and, on top of being a retreat center and a training academy, is also a farm. They plant olives, pumpkins, fava beans, figs, peaches, citrus, oranges, lemons and more. That makes it the perfect spot to train. The academy also provides students with tableware, bedding, washing machine, and wireless internet.

Participants will stay in private single rooms which are bright and located within the school. The private cozy rooms are equipped with a dresser and a study desk, simple and neat. Bathrooms are shared and equipped with Western bathrooms and 24 / 7 hot water. Each room offers one single bed, wardrobe, as well as table and chair.


The masters

Master Khalid Jamoudi was fortunate to have teachers who received their teaching directly from the source.

Master Lhaj is a former soldier in Indochina who was a direct disciple of the founder of Aikido Usheiba, and Master Carlo Otovisio, a disciple of Nakazono.


The Kototama, which can be translated as "science of vibrations", is an invitation to listen to being, to here-now, by the inner resonance of the original sounds.

Under the effect of the vibration emitted during the sounds, your cells adjust, your consciousness is modified, your energy is re-harmonized as an instrument is tuned.


On the way to the Aiki, there are seven levels: Aikibujutso, Aikijutso, Aikibudo, Aikido, Takimuso Aiki, Aikido Sumikiri, Shubu Aiki. Thus, Aikido is the fourth level on the Aiki path, it is the development of Qi and the coordination of body and mind.

Aikido for master Khalid is not a practice for the fight, but for the "do", for the way. It is a spiritual practice that combines sound, breath, and gesture.

Aikido is not traditional martial art. For example, Aikido fighters consider the safety and well-being of their attacker as much as they do their own. Rather than defeat their opponent, an Aikido fighter’s goal is to find a peaceful resolution.

Master Khalid will define a plan for you to make the best out of your stay here at Koom Retreat Center based on your objectives and what he notices.

On top of physical training (power and flexibility), optional free cultural classes, and more, you will cover the following:

  • What is Aikido?
  • Aiki Taisu
  • Les Wasa
  • Les 5 Principles
  • Qi

Plan for a healthy combo of Katamoto, Aikido, Qigong, power training, power stretching, applications but also principles of action and intent. Aikido is an incredible martial art with awesome self-defense theories and applications.

Unfortunately, much functional self-defense and martial arts practitioners have overlooked Aikido and consider it to be ineffective, primarily due to unrealistic training in a majority of schools. But doing so is a mistake. With realistic training, the unique principles and techniques of Aikido can work extremely well.

How Aikido works

Aikido begins before a physical attack has been launched, with an active awareness of distance and position. The ideal distance or ma-ai is one at which your attacker must take at least one step in order to touch you. This distance necessarily requires a motion of convergence for an attack to be executed, and that motion of convergence is a movement of energy toward you. Aikido works by blending with or "stealing" that energy from your attacker, and redirecting and / or reversing it into a throw or lock.

The theory is awesome, and in theory, it is not incredibly complex. In practice, however, especially in the face of a real attack, it is harder than it may seem to apply many common entries used to gain initial control. If an attacker succeeds in getting close by concealing his intention, the motion of convergence will have already occurred.

And if the attack involves a hard, fast, violent flurry of multiple blows, it can be incredibly difficult to blend into it or "get a handle" on the opponent in order to redirect or reverse the attack. The same difficulty also applies when skilled and unskilled opponents use fakes to set up their attack, or grabbing attacks that involve violent pulling and pushing, as most grabbing attacks obviously are.

When an attack is initiated at close range and / or is not singularly committed in nature, establishing the initial control required to redirect or reverse the energy of the attack may require more than a harmonious merge or blend. It may require direct and forceful entry to take control rather than steal it, along with the use of force to lead an opponent into a throw or lock.

Although this more direct and aggressive approach is not common in many, if not most Aikido schools, it does follow the principles of the art. The same centered base (physical and mental), unique footwork, and circular application of power are of great importance.

The ethical art?

One of the primary goals of Aikido is to enable a practitioner to defend themselves without injuring their opponent. Aikido thus uses throws, joint locks, and pins instead of strikes. However, the reason Aikido practitioners are not injured in practice is their skill in falling and rolling out of these techniques.

The average attacker will not know how to fall or roll and could be severely injured by Aikido throws and locks. In fact, these techniques can do more lasting damage than many strikes. Being thrown onto concrete can lead to accidental death due to head trauma, and joint manipulations can lead to torn ligaments and tendons that destroy a joint for life.

Aikido throws can be used to "gently" throw an opponent to the ground, and joint manipulations can stop at locks instead of progressing to breaks. But care must be taken when using such techniques on the average person unless the goal is indeed to injure them.

Keep in mind that defending yourself without injuring your opponent is generally more difficult than defending yourself by injuring him. It requires a higher level of skill, and if your opponent is not injured he may very well continue his attack after your initial defense. However, there are situations where it may be unwise or unethical to injure your attacker, and Aikido provides a way to do this.

Aikido training

Aikido training begins with ukemi where the practitioner learns to receive or react to Aikido techniques used on him or her. This includes safe ways to fall and roll to avoid injury. While ukemi is a fundamental skill that must be learned, it is very important for the practitioner to avoid being conditioned to fall or roll when it is unnecessary.

In many Aikido schools, practitioners flip to the ground at the slightest touch, doing a great disservice to their partners. This creates a situation where ineffective techniques appear effective. So while learning to be locked or thrown is important, these skills must only be used when there is no other option.

A real attacker will be violent, fully resisting, uncooperative, and fighting back. Therefore, training must necessarily include defense against such an opponent. Random attacks and resistance are not enough. It is imperative that your opponent is fighting back. Cooperative training is, of course, necessary for learning techniques. But in order to learn to apply techniques, your opponent must try not to let you use your techniques 100%.

Aikido techniques

With realistic training, many Aikido techniques work very well. The key to successful application in self-defense is having entries that work against violent, random attacks, followed by positive control to lead your opponent into finishing throws and locks.

You will notice two initial controls listed below. While these are not part of traditional Aikido, they are positions that can dramatically increase your ability to apply Aikido techniques in self-defense, and they do follow the core principles of Aikido. In the following techniques, you will see these controls used after functional, high percentage entries.

  • Footwork
  • Entering
  • 90-degree pivot
  • 90-degree pivot with sling step
  • 180-degree pivot
  • 180-degree pivot with sling step
  • Initial controls
  • Head and arm control
  • Arm control
  • Joint locks
  • Ikkyo
  • Nikyo
  • Sankyo
  • Shiho Nage
  • Kote Gaeshi
  • Throws
  • Irimi Nage
  • Kaiten Nage
  • Tenchi Nage
  • Aiki Otoshi
  • Koshi Nage
  • Seoi Nage
  • Chokes
  • Rear naked choke


Hicham Essadki

Khalid Jamoudi

Master Carlo Otovisio


This training will take place at Koom Retreat Center. Koom is located in the beautiful climate of Sidi Abdallah Ghiat (20 kilometers from Marrakech), Morocco. The village hosts every Sunday the best-served farmers' market of the entire region.

The farm is surrounded by luxurious properties with restaurants, cafes, and hammams (Moroccan sauna), mini golf, and more. The village has extremely affordable grill houses. Sidi Abdallah Ghiat is renowned for its blend of old rural Morocco and outstanding natural beauty.


  • Marrakech, 20 kilometers



  • Gym
  • Swimming pool (outdoor)


  • Dining area
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fireplace
  • Garden
  • Lobby
  • Luggage room / storage
  • Meditation garden
  • Multilingual staff
  • Picnic area
  • Smoke-free property
  • Special menu request
  • Terrace
  • Yoga deck


  • Free bicycle
  • Free parking
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Ironing / ironing board
  • Laundry
  • Medical assistance
  • Meeting room
  • Tour assistance


A culinary team well versed in internal cuisine with a preference for Moroccan dishes awaits you to accommodate all your dietary needs and weight objectives.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

The following drinks are included:

  • Water
  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Detox juices

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
  • Hallal
  • Other dietary requirements on request
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

  • Barter for a bargain in the souk
  • Ben Youssef Madrasa visit
  • Building your small garden
  • Excursion to the House of Photography
  • Finding peace at the Saadian Tombs
  • Getting lost in the medina
  • Going to the beach for the weekend
  • Horse riding
  • Hot air balloon ride at sunrise
  • People watching at coffee houses
  • Soaking in the local clean hammam (Moroccan bathhouse - the secret behind Moroccan eternal youth) ranging in price from 15 MAD per person (2 USD) in the local village to hundreds in high-end riads close by
  • Taking a cooking class
  • Trekking to the highest mountain of Morocco
  • Trip to Jemaa el-Fnaa
  • Visits to local riads for tea, coffee, and dining
  • Visiting Marrakech and exploring the thousands of bazaars and museums

What's included

  • Classes on herbal medicine, massages, calligraphy, Arabic, and sustainable farming
  • Classes
  • 3 nights' accommodation
  • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Bottled water
  • Internet access
  • Transportation to and from the airport, bus and train station on the day of arrival and the day of departure

What's not included

  • Towels
  • Clothing
  • Toiletries
  • Activities outside of the academy
  • Spa treatment (available upon request)

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Airport: Marrakesh Menara Airport Airport transfer included: Marrakesh Menara Airport No additional charges. You can request this in the next step.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 30% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 5 days before arrival.

Value for money
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4 days / 3 nights
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