There are currently openings for Adult and Children students. Interested candidates are invited to observe a class. The dojo is co-located with the Toledo Zen Center at 6537 Angola Road Holland, OH 43558

Aikido is a non-competitive martial art that can be practiced by almost anyone. Aikido techniques do not rely on physical strength but rather develops relaxed power through the focus of intention and Ki. The result is a creative method of non-destructive conflict resolution.

Aikido is practiced on many levels. The first level is includes the development of stamina, flexibility, and learning how to focus one's intention. The second level is built on the first and stresses self-defense techniques that teach the natural order of movement. In this process the students also become adept at ukemi, the art of rolling, falling and protecting oneself. Aikido provides the opportunity for the development of the entire person. It is a workout of the entire body and mind and results in increased strength, overall physically fitness, flexibility and centeredness.

At the third level students are gradually introduced to the secrets of receiving and harnessing the power of ki, they also develop spatial awareness and learn to judge proper timing and distance. During this training the goal is to establish and maintain an energetic connection to your partner and to lead them off balance. This eliminates the need for more destructive means of resolving situations.

The highest level of aikido is mind over matter. This involves the use of visualization techniques, the power of intention and ki, breath control and meditation. Aikido is truly a spiritual martial art that explores themind - body - spirit connection. This advanced level of training at Shobu Aikido reaches a level not easily found elsewhere. The student learns how to manifest power and effectiveness by the focusing of intention alone. This level depends on and can only be reached through the refinement of technique and the students own deepest feeling. For this reason it alternates between the physical and the spiritual.

In the process of practicing aikido, students inevitably find themselves less stressed and more energetic, better equipped to manage life's many conflicts with calm control. Aikido is great for adults and kids alike because practice encourages respect for self and others, self control, cooperation and responsibility.

Gasshuku or weekend long intensive seminars with William Gleason Sensei are available seasonally.

Children's aikido classes provide a friendly, non-competitive environment for students to become more physically fit, agile, flexible, aware, focused, and relaxed. They learn how to safely fall, roll and perform a variety of self-defense techniques in a supportive, comfortable setting, and parents like Aikido because kids learn how to be powerful without becoming destructive.

Hello From Eric and Alec

Alec got slammed with a pretty involved homework assignment, and that's kept us both out of the Dojo this week. The assignment was to create an accurate scale model of a castle, complete with all walls, towers, buildings, and a mote. (Moat? Mote?....whatever....) He actually designed and drew up the whole project by himself. But, to get it done in the incredibly small amount of time they had to work on it, I helped him by cutting out the cardboard pieces. If you've never cut up 1/8" thick architects modeling cardboard with a Dremel Tool, all I can say is that it smells horrible and gets you covered with dust and dirt. In any case, I think he did a great job, and I'm very proud of him. A picture is attached with a VCR tape for size reference. (Does everyone remember VCR tapes, or am I dating myself here?)

I hope to see you all Saturday morning!

Eric (and Alec and Sandra and Jessica)

Sensei, Danny, Doug K., Andre, and Doug C. on the Web

In the ASU website, there is a link to a list of individuals who were recently promoted this past year (click on title above). Among them are our very own Sensei (yondan) as well as Danny, Doug K., Doug C., and yours truly (all shodan). And last week, Sensei presented to us our shodan certificates that came from Hombu Dojo in Japan (although Danny's certificate has yet to surface). Congratulations to Sensei on his promotion and congrats to my fellow comrades.

On a personal note, I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone I have trained with on the mat past and present. I very much appreciate the support and encouragement, the honest effort and positive energy in our practice together, and the exchange of ideas through taking ukemi from each other. Training with you has helped reveal and improve the gaps of my technique. I also want to give a special thanks to my sempai - Karen ("Zuihan"/Sempai), Doug ("Taisho"), Danny, and the late Ken "Phabava" Bender - for their guidance. And of course, many thanks to Sensei, who teaches the art of Aikido in its purest and authentic form.

I have always wanted to do martial arts since I was a little kid but somehow was not able to get around to it until just five years ago. Furthermore, I could not have imagined myself to be a black belt in anything, especially since I am certainly not the athletic type, I am prone to injury, and I had a history of asthma as a child. So this achievement is a dream come true for me.

Best of luck to those who are preparing for their upcoming tests later this month. To everyone in the dojo, I look forward in our continuing endeavor to discover the true essence of Budo. Domo arigato gozaimashita. Gassho.

-Andre ("Muketsu")

Old stuff from last year

This is old stuff, and not nearly as interesting as Muketsu's Excellent Adventure to California, but I keep meaning to post it. It is the website for the Japanese Club from Owens that visited the dojo in November of last year. Photos of the group, and misc. shots of us eating and drinking...seems to be a pattern here.
There are also links to other websites concerning Japanese if you are so inclined.


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