Don LaLiberty, Yondan, Senior Instructor, Chief Iaido Instructor

Don LaLiberty holds a fourth degree black belt in Aikido, and a third degree black belt in Iaido, a sword art; he teaches both at ATJB. He is a statistical programmer working for a consulting company that does social science research. Don began practicing Aikido in 1988 with Paul Sylvain Sensei and continued with Kanai Sensei from 1989 to 2004. His study of Iaido with Kanai Sensei began in 1992.

I believe that Aikido practice is most effective when done with minimal verbal interaction between partners and maximum focus on the physical experience. I try to spend as much practice time as possible in physical encounters with the partner. I can talk and think about Aikido anytime, but the amount of time another person is available to work with is limited, so I want to make the best use of that time. And I try to encourage that attitude in the classes I teach. Iaido can be practiced separately from Aikido, or as a complement to your Aikido training. In either case, you must decide to commit your time and effort to training. You cannot enjoy the benefits of the training, whatever they may be for you, unless you steadily keep at regular training.
Don LaLiberty


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