Sandan (3th degree black belt)
My aikido training began in 1987 in Kagoshima, Japan. There, I studied with several senior students of Sunadomari Sensei, the founder of Manseikan Aikido. Though I started training only a few months before departing Japan, the very warm and welcoming experience I had with my teachers, including Sunadomari Sensei, inspired me to make aikido a part of my life.
After returning to the U.S., I continued training at the Aikido Schools of Ueshiba-affiliated dojo at Indiana University. In 1992, I moved to Washington, DC and trained at the A.S.U. headquarters, Aikido Shobukan Dojo. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to train for many years with Saotome Sensei and his senior students, many of them highly influential teachers in their own right. In 2007, I returned to Indiana and began training and teaching at the Indianapolis Aikikai.
I’m grateful to everyone I have trained with over the years: not just the teachers, but literally everyone I’ve trained with. Each person provides a unique experience from which to learn. Although aikido has a structural foundation of martial techniques adapted from the ancient battlefield for self-defense, the true meaning of the techniques unfolds as the individual develops understanding and intuition regarding the integration of mind, body, time, space, and energy. Aikido provides the opportunity for fundamental change. As a cooperative, community-based endeavor, aikido is a kind of human interaction laboratory. Through interacting with and participating in the growth of others, the individual evolves.