Hello, my name is Jim Myers, I live in Ventura and I’ve been training under Reynosa Shihan for over 25 years, I hold the rank of Sandan (Third dan) and I am one of the assistant teachers here at Makoto Dojo.
Although I had studied other martial arts, the idea of nonresistant self defense based in compassion rather than violence fascinated me. Aikido will give you the possibility of avoiding attack or controlling an attacker without injuring them. The other arts I’ve studied used injury to disable an attacker.
I first met Reynosa Shihan when I took his Aikido class at Ventura College. I immediately knew that I had found a great teacher and Aikido was something special. I had never seen the level of camaraderie exhibited by his students in any other martial arts school. But, it was several years before I could actually join the dojo.
My daughter trained for several years in the kid’s, youth and adult’s classes. The skills she learned at Makoto Dojo saved her several times on the soccer field and contributed to her growing up to be a confident well adjusted young woman who is aware of danger but approaches life without fear.
While she was training I would assist Shihan in the kid’s classes and as time went on I began filling in when he was away.
Today I teach the youth and adult’s classes regularly. I find that I learn almost as much from teaching as from training and I do my best to keep a student’s mindset even when teaching.