Aikido Tacoma Aikikai is dedicated to sharing aikido to empower youth and adults in the South Puget Sound. By offering non-violent conflict resolution through rigorous physical training, aikido can promote harmony and equality throughout our community.
Tacoma Aikikai embraces a traditional aikido training environment, rooted in the lineage and discipline of Japanese martial traditions. We are committed to creating a safe and inclusive training environment, mutually respecting all gender identities, sexual orientations, races, faiths, ages, and abilities.
Training at Tacoma Aikikai includes both empty hand (tai-jitsu) and aikido weapons (jyo, bokken, and tanto), as well as iaido (Japanese sword) and zazen meditation.
Aikido is a modern martial art developed in Japan by Morihei Ueshiba (1883-1969), known by his students as O-Sensei. While expressing many attributes of traditional Japanese martial traditions, aikido emphasizes physical practice to unite the body, mind, and spirit. Known as “the way of harmony”, aikido neutralizes an opponent’s attacks through blending, joint locks, and throws. This provides practitioners with a choice when encountering conflict.
Training in aikido is physically rigorous. However, aikido techniques do not rely on strength. Because of this, people of all ages, sizes, and abilities can enjoy practice. Through sincere and rigorous training, aikido empowers students with confidence in conflict resolution, improved fitness and flexibility, and an overall sense of well-being.
Ea Murphy, Chief Instructor, has studied aikido since 2000 in both the US and Japan. She started her training at Eugene Aikikai, followed by 10 years at Siskiyou Aikikai. In 2013, she moved to Japan to apprentice with Yoko Okamoto Sensei and Chris Mulligan Sensei of Aikido Kyoto. She founded Tacoma Aikikai in 2016, after returning to the US. She holds the ranks of Yondan (4th degree black belt, aikikai) and Shidoin (certified teacher).
Eric Gillet started Aikido in Belgium in 1983. He moved to Berkeley, California in 1993, where he studied under I. Shibata Sensei as Uchi Deshi. Eric joined Tacoma Aikikai in 2017. In addition to teaching aikido, Eric Sensei also runs the iaido program. He holds the ranks of Godan (5th degree black belt, aikikai) and Shidoin (certified teacher).