Dave is the founder and chief instructor of Aikido of San Diego. He began Aikido in 1986 as a dabbler in the art. A year later he was practicing regularly, and then in 1990 he moved to Japan for 3½ years to train under some of Morihei Ueshiba's most prolific disciples. Dave has a BA in Philosophy, an MA in Teaching, and worked on academic faculties in the US and Japan for nine years. He also spent several years studying/practicing somatic psychology and bodywork, and is a Body Mind College graduate. In 1998, Dave started teaching Aikido at UCSD. He did it for 10 years, even after establishing our first Mission Valley dojo in 2000. Dave also plays in the world of comedy, and graduated from Finest City Improv's training program. He'a nature lover, and finds inspiration and delight in life's big questions.
Megan began training in 2000 on a whim after reading a description of aikido in a college rec class catalogue. She never dreamed aikido would become such an integral part of her life. She's interested in the principles of balance and rhythm found in Aikido. Megan is a scientist at a biotech company. Her hobbies include music, photography, and attempting to keep her cats from tripping up her husband, Jay. "Aikido has seen me through several transitions in my life. I am truly grateful for the joy and inspiration I get out of my training."
Karen started training in 1999 and is committed to creating a dojo community of support and challenge. Before Aikido she studied Tae Kwon Do, Hapkido, Tai Chi and Kung Fu. "I have always known I needed a physical counterbalance to my intense scientific training." She had found meditation as a balm for the spirit, and yoga as a welcome challenge to the body, but realized there was still something missing-- a way that would help her reconcile the relationship of the self with the other. That is Aikido. When not in the dojo, Karen is a scientist in the alternative energy industry.
Linda began practicing Aikido in 2009, at age 46, to improve her horsemanship. From the beginning she was inspired to explore how Aikido is taught and learned. In addition to mentoring adults, she assisted in the children’s programs for over eight years. Linda loves Aikido both from the technical perspective, and as a practice of awareness and embodiment. She shares her experiences on her site GrabMyWrist.com, and is completing her forthcoming book, Aikido to Zanshin - 26 Essays on the Martial Art of Peace. Her passion is encouraging people to begin, and supporting new learners of all ages.
Jay Palm, 3 Dan
Scott Bjerke, 2 Dan
Marco Martinez, 2 Dan