Shintai Do

Shintai Do (心体道), meaning “the Way of the Body and the Spirit”, is a recently founded martial art, originated in Italy. Shintai Do must not be confused with Shintaido, the body movement derived from traditional martial arts founded in Japan in the sixties by Master Aoki. The Shintai Do is a way that includes joint locks, atemi (or blows), throws, realistic fights, fall techniques and the use of traditional weapons and has the purpose of using the martial practice to gain a better understanding of one self.

To achieve that, the training includes self-motivation techniques, meditation and different breathing skills, it has no antagonistic purposes and doesn’t use “kata” or forms. The only school teaching the authentic Shintai Do is the Shintai Ryu (School of the Body and the Spirit) located in Milan, Italy.

Shin Tai Do is a container for ancient knowledge which was developed and refined over thousands of years. The traditional martial arts include profound wisdom about the mind and body, the Tao of living in harmony with nature, and how to find true inner strength. But in the 21st century, with the existence of guns, airplanes, bombs, and many hi-tech weapons, the techniques of hand-to-hand combat are obsolete.

Shin Tai Do addresses this philosophical question: who are the “enemies”? Perhaps the enemies are not other people, but the conditions of modern life itself, such as feelings of alienation and lonliness; stress and fear; lack of contact with the natural world; toxic chemicals in the environment; etc. What would a “martial art” look like if it embodied a gesture of openness to other people, a love of the earth and sky, a fearless exploration of creative expression?

Shin Tai Do is both a container for preserving the essence of the ancient wisdom of East, and a mind-body toolbox for the global culture of the present. The tools of Shin Tai Do are written in the language of body movement, but they are more than athletic exercises. They can help us to confront the challenge of living a creative life, to become warriors for mother earth, to go beyond self-imposed limitations, and to find the inner light of our humanity.