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50 years „Aikido Club Appenzell“/History:
The foundation stone of the Aikido Club Appenzell was laid in Herisau. It was Hans Müller who had the idea to establish a Judo-Club and on 6th June 1957 the first meeting and foundation of the Judo-Club-Herisau took place. A provisional committee was elected. Its members were: Kurt Schlotterbeck (president), Hans Müller (actuary), Willi Knöpfel (cashier) and Dr. Leo Senn (assessor).
After being confronted with many startup difficulties, a small garage was found where the first training took place. On the 1st September 1958 the dojo moved into the Heinrichbad area. At the general meeting on the 29th April 1965 the annual report of the president of the Judo-Club-Herisau, Willy Frischknecht, mentions Aikido for the first time: “Ai-ki-do, the more sensitive art of Judo. Not practiced as a martial art anymore but more as a natural philosophy. […] Werner Frisch and I were allowed to participate in a seminar lead by the young japanese Tamura-Sensei. […] It was the experience of thousands of years of spiritual art converted to physical exercises. […]”
One can say that Willi Frischknecht was the actual founding father of the Aikido Club Appenzell and is one of the key figures when it comes to the beginning of Aikido in Switzerland. Therefore it is not surprising that he was present at the meeting of the foundation of our Aikido Club at Appenzell.
Foundation of the Aikido Club Appenzell
The statutes of the Aikido Club Appenzell were accepted at the founding meeting on 15th april 1968 and the new club was inaugurated as “Nakazono Dojo Appenzell“. The attendants were Josef Enzler (president), Hansuli Forrer (aktuary), Albert Fässler (cashier) and others.
In the first years of the Aikido Club Appenzell Willi Fischknech acted as technical supervisor and gave the training. Albert Fässler, who was a member of the management as cashier since 1972, took over the technical guidance and the presidential function in 1974. He was significantly responsible for the growth of the club and is still today an active member and training supervisor. From 1989 until 1996 Urs Goldener acted as president and his focus on young members was highly successful. René Isenring, president from 1996 was paramount to continue the tradition of the Aikido Club Appenzell and to promote the growing collaboration with other dojos and the ACSA. In 2013 he passed on the presidential chair to Thomas Inauen, who continues this task with just as much engagement and commitment.