- Category: Dojo
- Published: 26 February 2010
(Note that at present classes are running on a reduced schedule since Judith has taken up a position in Liverpool. The Friday classes are taught by Martin Mathieu, 2nd Dan Aikikai who also teaches in the Aiki Dojo Downpatrick http://www.add.aikidoinireland.org/ )
In 2004, Judith moved to Philadelphia and found the Philadelphia Aikikai. Under the instruction of the late Henry Smith Shihan, 6th Dan, she began her Aikido training. In January 2009, Judith was promoted to the rank of 1st Dan Aikikai by Yoshimitsu Yamada Shihan in his New York headquarters and she moved back to Belfast three days later.
While teaching in Belfast, Judith continues her own training by attending seminars and summer camps in Europe and the UK. She has had the opportunity to experience many styles of the art under many highly respected instructors. Those who have been the greatest influence are Henry Smith Shihan (6th Dan), Jan Nevelius Shihan (6th Dan), Jorma Lily (6th Dan), Mouliko Halen (6th Dan), Philippe Goutard (6th Dan), Marc Bachraty (5th Dan), and Cyril Lagrasta (5th Dan). All these teachers have been a great source of encouragement and inspiration.
Judith understands that Aikido is a personal journey, experienced and expressed differently by each individual. She believes that Aikido can work for anyone, regardless of age, size, gender or strength.