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‚ú≥ The Kids of Aikido Kenkyukai: Ian McMurtry | Aikido Kenkyukai International, USA
424-209-2083 admin@aki-usa.org

“Aikido is really great. It’s fun; it gives you more exercise; and it’s good for self defense. Aikido makes me feel kind of happy, and more confident, and stronger.”

  • Ian McMurtry,¬†8
  • Student
  • AKI¬†Santa Barbara

Ian, who began Aikido at age 5, has been training at Aikido Kenkyukai for 3.5 years, beginning first under¬†Matt Bridi Sensei, and now under Chris Ziliotto Sensei. His family heard about Aikido through his dad’s coworker and Ian wanted to try it so he could learn self defense.

At his first class, he admits that he was a little nervous and shy. Three and a half years later, not only has¬†Ian¬†successfully integrated, but he was recently even invited to join the dojo “Demonstration Team” for a performance at the Montecito Union School’s Fundraising Gala at the Coral Casino!

Ian says that the reason he continues training Aikido is “I want to know more about Aikido and I want to get higher ranks/belts”. He cites Aikido’s¬†benefits as follows: “It’s fun and I like all of the kids there and I like my instructors. Aikido makes me feel kind of happy, and more confident, and stronger.”

Apart from training, Ian likes playing Minecraft, playing with Legos, and drawing.

When asked what his life would be like with no Aikido, Ian¬†replied, “I might be bored. I wouldn’t get as much exercise. And If I got into a conflict, I wouldn’t feel as confident. ”

Those who wish to train with Ian will find him attending classes at the organization’s Santa Barbara dojo every Monday and Wednesday.

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Our instructors create a positive environment to build confidence and self esteem.


Kids have positive role models whose expertise exemplify the rewards of discipline and dedication.


Kids learn leadership and responsibility, emphasizing the importance of mutual respect both in and out of the dojo.

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What Others Are Saying

Don't just take it from us, let our dojo members & alumni do the talking!

"So much enthusiasm and dedication from Lia Sensei! Thank you for teaching our kids so superbly!" Carlos Barrios MD

Child, Adolescent, and Adult Psychiatrist

"The work that Suzuki Sensei is doing with her students is phenomenal! I've been to the Santa Barbara dojo and trained as a guest. The dojo is spacious, the students kind and generous - and earnest martial artists."

"If you happen to live in any of the locations where Sensei has a dojo go and train. You will be glad you did. If you have children that are in need of a nourishing and fun environment - Aikido Kenkykai is the place to take them."

Tony Blomert


"We love it! Nikki loves Sensei Lia! She is so loving and awesome with the kids." Nicole Blum-Negard

Owner, Q & A Bookkeeping Services, Inc.

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Los Angeles, CA 90004

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Santa Barbara, CA 93101

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Santa Barbara, CA 93101

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