Thank you and ‘Gokurosama Deshita’ to all who participated in Nippon Kan’s Marathon Seminar. To date, over 1,800 Aikidoists took on the challenge to participate in Nippon Kan’s Marathon Seminars, and a wide range of members participated in this year’s seminar, from members of Nippon Kan’s Moo Club, which only those who are 60 and older can join among Nippon Kan regular members, and new regular members. Not only did Nippon Kan members worked hard in ‘keiko (practice)’, they also offered much help in various ways, e.g. preparing to welcome guests at Nippon Kan, doing office work, bringing in food & meals for uchideshi and entertaining a group of uchideshi from overseas in the Rocky Mountains or at their homes, to help run the Seminar smoothly. As I was in charge of preparing meals for uchideshi during the seminar, I found everyone’s contributions to bring meals and other items extremely helpful. Thank You.
Special classes by this year’s guest instructors, Hitohira Saito sensei, the chairman (kaicho) of Shinshin Aiki Shurenkai – Dento Iwama Ryu, and Stephanie Yap sensei, Chief Instructor of Aikido of South Florida, a U.S. chapter of Dento Iwama Ryu, were carried out with much intensity & enthusiasm from the guest instructors and were filled with full of energy from students. Thanks to Yap sensei’s proactive planning and continued support, many Aikidoists from all over the U.S. traveled to join the special classes by Hitohira Saito kaicho to make the class experience more dynamic and memorable. Thank You!
While it was wonderful to have 12 elite soldiers from the Nepalese Army Aikido Instructors Training Unit as uchideshi during this year’s seminar, I somewhat regret we could only accept only 3 uchideshi from general applicants.
The elite Nepalese Army soldiers who have been trained as Nippon Kan Aikido instructors have been dispatched to various regions of conflicts in the world as part of the U.N. Peacekeeping Forces, and they are teaching Nippon Kan Aikido as part of their assignments. I feel both humbled and honored as a Budo-ka (martial artist) by the fact that not only have Aikido Nippon Kan’s teaching philosophy and teaching methods been elected as a mandatory training program in the Army of a sovereign nation, but they also have been practiced in the areas of conflicts in the world.
We are also grateful that many visitors took their time out of their busy schedule to give their words of encouragement to motivate the seminar attendees, and I would like to extend my special thanks to Major General Mike Loh & Command Sergeant Major Bill Wood of the National Guard for their visit with the Nepalese Army Aikido Instructors team members. I am also grateful that Colonel Thapa from the Nepalese Army, who has been staying in the U.S., and his wife, who flew from Nepal, could join the Closing & Award Ceremony. Much gratitude should also be extended to many veterans as well as active members of the U.S. military organizations who supported this year’s seminar directly and indirectly, as some of them also took the time to pay us a visit to keep us motivated to get through the challenging training.
Founder & Kancho, Aikido Nippon Kan