Takashi Kushida was born in Japan on May 2, 1935. He began his study of
Aikido under Gozo Shioda-sensei, an early student of Aikido founder
Morihei Ueshiba, at the age of 18. After less than a year of regular
training, he was chosen to become an uchideshia full-time apprentice
studentand spent the next ten years living and training in the
Yoshinkan Dojo (training hall) in Tokyo.
Following this period of intense training and instruction, Kushida was
made Senior Assistant Instructor at the Yoshinkan. Between 1963 and 1973
he served as Aikido teacher to the Japanese Air Force, the Tokyo Riot
Control Police, and National Railway Police. He also accompanied Shioda-sensei
in demonstrations in New Zealand and Hawaii as well as teaching at
various universities, private companies, and at the Yoshinkan.
In 1973, Kushida-sensei traveled to the United States at the invitation
of a small group of American Aikido enthusiasts in the Detroit, Mich. area.
Originally scheduled to visit only a few months, the response to his
teaching and the growing level of interest in Aikido convinced him to
send for his family and stay in the U.S. to teach. In 1981, he was asked
to give a demonstration for the President's Council on Physical
Fitness in Washington, D.C. In 1991, Kushida-sensei established his own
school of Aikido, adopting the name "Aikido Yoshokai." The
Yoshokai school stresses the philosophical and scientific principles
behind Aikidoin particular, Kushida-sensei's emphasis on harmony
and conflict resolution as the ultimate goal of Aikido practice.
In the past 20 years Kushida-sensei has introduced thousands of men and
women across America to Aikido. The non-profit Aikido Yoshokai Association
of North American (AYANA) currently sanctions over 50 American instructors
throughout the U.S. Today, Kushida-sensei teaches classes at the
, AYANA's headquarters facility,
located near his home in Ann Arbor, Mich. At the Genyokan, Kushida-sensei
also conducts formal classes in Genbu Sotojutsu
a 200-year-old sword method once taught only to members of the Kushida
family in Japan.