Gideon Haimovitz’s Shodan Exam

Be sure to have this on your calendar: On Saturday, September 16, 2017, around 10 am, Gideon Haimovitz will be doing his shodan (first degree black belt) exam. The exam is during Craig Fife Sensei’s seminar, September 15 – 17, 2017.

Gideon is a long-time student of Aikido’Ka, going on 7 years. Everyone who knows Gideon thinks the world of him and he’s immense fun to train with. His exam will be amazing.

Gideon is the third home-grown black belt for me, after Gabriel Cuppet and Ian Isbell. Both Gabriel and Ian did amazing tests. I expect Gideon’s to be the best yet.

Everyone is welcome to watch, at no charge. If you want to train during the seminar (which you really ought to do!), click here to register.

Craig Fife Sensei Seminar

As you can see from the flyer, Craig Fife Sensei will be at Aikido’Ka September 15 – 17. Our good friend Gideon Haimovitz will do his shodan test on Saturday morning, September 16, at about 10 am.

Many folks will know Craig Sensei from being one of the Aiki Summer Retreat headliners. He’s an extraordinary aikido instructor and an absolutely first-rate person. You will enjoy yourself and learn a tremendous amount at this seminar. Please join us!

Craig Fife Sensei is the founder and chief instructor of Aikido Northwest. Since 2013, Fife Sensei has been one of the headliners of Aiki Summer Retreat, with Michael Friedl Shihan and Kimberly Richardson Sensei. He began his aikido training in 1973 in Boise, Idaho. Fife Sensei currently holds the rank of Rokudan (6th degree black belt), from the Aikikai Foundation, Aikido World Headquarters, Tokyo, Japan. This rank was awarded to him by his teacher, Frank Doran Shihan.

In addition to Fife Sensei’s personal study of Aikido, he has been actively teaching Aikido since 1980. Fife Sensei has also been a student of Iaido since 1990 and currently holds the rank of Nidan (2nd degree black belt) from the All United States Kendo Federation. Fife Sensei is a member of the California Aikido Association Teaching Committee.

For more info and to register for the seminar, click here.

Attend Our 10th Anniversary Celebration — March 10-12, 2016

It’s completely hard for me to believe, but our 10th Anniversary is coming up. So, I think this calls for a little dojo history lesson. 🙂

White-Faced Ibis

These are White-Faced ibis, not Sandhill cranes.

In Japanese culture, the crane is special. It’s a sign of longevity and good fortune, because it supposedly lives for 1,000 years. In reality, cranes do live long lives. In captivity, their life-span averages 40 to 60 years. Supposedly, one captive Siberian crane lived for 83 years and fathered chicks at age 78. OK, then!

Anyway . . . to Aikido’Ka Opening Day. We had classes and other events going all day long. It was quite the extravaganza and tremendous fun. While I was leading a class, I heard a familiar sound and listened carefully. It didn’t take too long for me to think I was hearing Sandhill cranes — a lot of them.

I dashed outside and saw circling directly above the dojo a flock of Sandhill cranes. There must have been hundreds of them. The cranes visited several times that day. I’m not superstitious, or anything like that, but I sure did appreciate the visit. 🙂 The cranes don’t show up every year, but they often do.

Michael Friedl Shihan and Kimberly Richardson Sensei

Michael Friedl Shihan and Kimberly Richardson Sensei

While I can’t guarantee the cranes will appear during our 10th Anniversary Celebration, I can assure you that we’re going to have a great time. Two of my favorite aikido people will be teaching — Michael Friedl Shihan and Kimberly Richardson Sensei. Michael Shihan is my direct aikido teacher. He’s an extraordinary teacher and a great guy — informative, fun, easily approachable. Kimberly Richardson Sensei is an absolute marvel. She moves with extraordinary grace. She’s very friendly and approachable. You’ll love both of them. Getting the two of them with us together is an incredible treat. We’ll also have some other teachers who have been instrumental in our success teach some. We’ll be providing lunch at the dojo. I also understand that Michael Shihan may put on a brief magic show during lunch!

On top of all of this fun, Ian Isbell will be doing his shodan test Saturday morning around 10 am. Ian will be our second home-grown black belt. Talk about exciting! Ian has been training for about 8 years, and is a key member of Aikido’Ka. He’s a really great guy with a truly joyful spirit.

Ian Isbell

Ian will be demonstrating for his shodan on March 10, 2017.

Aikido’Ka is a friendly, fun dojo where you are welcome. So please join us and celebrate! You’ll get a $20 discount if you register before March 3, 2017.


By the way, the photo I’ve used with this post is not of Sandhill cranes. They’re White-Faced ibis. Ibis aren’t cranes, but they’re considered “crane-like.” Since I couldn’t find any photos of cranes that I’ve taken, I used this one. I expect to get some crane photos soon and I’ll update this post then.

Gabriel Cuppet’s Shodan Test

Gabriel Cuppet's Shodan ExamAt about 10 am on Saturday, December 10, Gabriel Cuppet will be doing his shodan (1st degree black belt) test. Gabriel is, and has been, a key member of Aikido’Ka for years. Please join us and support Gabriel on his big day! There’s no charge for watching the exam (or the seminar).

Gabriel’s test is part of the Aikido’Ka Seminar Series: Getting to Shodan and Beyond, Applying Principles to Technique. The seminar is being taught by Chuck Hauk and Daryl Berlie Senseis, both 6th dan.

Click this link for more seminar information.

Kayla Feder Sensei Seminar

Kayla Feder SenseiPlease join us for Kayla Feder Sensei’s first visit to Aikido’Ka. Feder Sensei is a terrific instructor and aikidoist. She is, simply, one of the most fun people to train with anywhere, anytime. Enjoy!

Kayla Sensei began her Aikido training in 1973 when she was 9-years-old. She has trained continuously for 43 years. When she was 16, Sensei traveled to Iwama, Japan, to study with Morihiro Saito Shihan, 9th dan. In subsequent trips to Japan, Kayla Sensei trained with a number of other Shihan who trained under the founder.

Kayla Sensei has also trained with and been strongly influenced by Doran Shihan, Nadeau Shihan, Saotome Shihan, and Ikeda Shihan. She received the rank of 6th dan in 2004.

Kayla Sensei has taught seminars throughout the US, Europe, and Israel. In addition to her Aikido accomplishments, she received a Masters degree in Holistic Health Education from JFK University in 1998.

Kayla Sensei’s teaching style supports the individual growth of each student.  Her training and teaching are warm and welcoming.

You will immensely enjoy training with Kayla Feder Sensei.

For more information about the seminar and to register, click here.

Kimberly Richardson Sensei Seminar Photo

We had an absolutely amazing seminar with Kimberly Richardson Sensei. I hope we can do another soon!
Here’s a group photo.

Group photo from Kimberly Richardson Sensei's seminar at Aikido'Ka

Group photo from Kimberly Richardson Sensei’s seminar at Aikido’Ka

Choose Your Own Adventure Seminar

Choose-Your-Own-Adventure-graphic3Focused Practice on What’s Important to You

With Senseis Michael Friedl, Frank Bloksberg, Mark Zwagerman

 We’ll be working on what you want to study, addressing your personal aikido challenges. We will be training, not talking!

When you sign up online, just tell us what you want to work on. We’ll take questions at the seminar, too.

What We’ll Be Working on During This Seminar . . .

You’ll be working on whatever you want. Come to the seminar with your most pressing aikido questions and challenges and we’ll do our best to help you through them. Or, train on the techniques you enjoy the most. Or just show up and see what happens.

We will all meet with the same goal: Helping each other succeed in our training, enjoy our practice and build friendships. After the seminar, you should be a long way to overcoming your aikido challenges, — or, at least, understanding how to ultimately answer your questions and overcome those challenges. And, you will have had a great time.

The Choose Your Own Adventure Seminar is an experiment. We’ve never held a seminar like this before. Here’s the plan right now (if it doesn’t work, we’ll change it): Before the seminar, we will collect everyone’s questions so that we have an idea of what people want to work on. If there’s a particular theme to the questions, then we’ll address that theme at the beginning of the seminar.

As nage, you will work on the techniques and/or principles you want to work on. As uke, you will do your best for your partner’s technique/principle study. Michael, Frank and Mark Senseis will work with you to answer your questions. Keeping an open mind and giving your best training effort will lead to everyone having a terrific time and learning a lot.

For more information and to register for the Choose Your Own Adventure Seminar, click here!



Intro to Better Movement – June 22 – 26, 5:30 – 6:30 pm

Intro to Movement Class, June 22 - 26, 2015

Intro to Movement Class, June 22 – 26, 2015

While the rest of us are away at Aiki Summer Retreat, we are having a really special 5-day Intro to Movement event at the dojo. The dates and time for Intro to Movement are June 22 – 26, 2015, from 5:30 – 6:30 pm.

Master Trainer, Eric Kenyon, will lead this 5-day event.

Here’s what you’ll get at this amazing event:

  • Learn the 3 indispensable elements to making your  exercise program effective.
  • Learn the 3 common mistakes that can keep you from reaching your physical fitness goals.
  • Learn how to design and execute a safer and more effective physical practice so that you meet your goals.

This event will include demonstrations, and Q & A with founder Eric Kenyon Sfg. Some of his new and long time students will be on hand to offer insights and first hand accounts of their accomplishments while training with Eric.

Participants will get a chance to learn and execute some of the unique exercises which will get you in the shape you want. You will also see Eric’s regular students do extended sessions of their regular training, and his  instructors teaching and guiding students.

Eric will fully answer all questions and inquiries. You can go over time if that is necessary.

If you have never been to Aikido’Ka, please arrive a few minutes early to fill out a waiver.

Price $10.00 per session.

Any questions contact Eric Kenyon at 510-393-2568, or email

Training with Our Friends at Aikido & Healing Arts Center of Roseville

untitled-2866Here are a couple of group photos from Molly and Jeramy Hale’s seminar at Aikido & Healing Arts Center of Roseville. The seminar was May 17, 2015. We had a great time.




Click on the pictures below to see them full size.

[flickr_tags tags="Molly and Jeramy Hale Seminar in Roseville"]

Don't miss your opportunity to train with Molly and Jeramy at Aiki Summer Retreat, June 21-27, 2015! 
Click here for more information.

Training with Our Friends at Aikido & Healing Arts Center of Roseville

Here are a couple of group photos from Molly and Jeramy Hale’s seminar at Aikido & Healing Arts Center of Roseville. The seminar was May 17, 2015. We had a great time.

[flickr_tags tags="Molly and Jeramy Hale Seminar in Roseville"]

Don't miss your opportunity to train with Molly and Jeramy at Aiki Summer Retreat, June 21-27, 2015! Click here for more information.