What is Aikido?

Aikido is a relatively new martial art that emphasizes harmonious interactions between people and their mental energy, and the taking of an opponent’s balance while maintaining correct posture. While practicing aikido, two people work together to complete a technique rather than fighting against each other. Students learn how to fall, roll, and how to turn and blend with an attacker’s force rather than blocking an incoming strike.

Aikido is a method of self- defense which can be used against any form of attack; it is the discipline of coordinating mind and body to realize all of one’s vital power.

In Aikido, we learn to render an attack harmless with no serious injury to the aggressor. It can be used lethally, however Aikido teaches that it is unnecessary to harm the attacker to prevail.


Jennifer is a Nidan (2nd degree black belt), earned under Yoshimitsu Yamada Shihan (Chief Instructor and Technical Advisor of the United States Aikido Federation). 

Jen throwing Gordon Dec 2011She started her Aikido training in 2006 with Henry Smith at Aikikai of Philadelphia, and later trained with Skip Chapman at Jersey Shore Aikikai.  Jennifer continues to train extensively, attending over 20 seminars a year with Yamada Sensei and other senior Aikido instructors.  She also regularly visits New York Aikikai and other local dojos in addition to her seminar travels.

Jennifer also has other martial arts experience. She took Tae Kwon Do as a teenager, and trained in Yagyu Shin Kage Ryu (a classical Japanese sword art) for five years under Paul Manogue, attaining the rank of Shodan (1st degree black belt) in the latter art.

Off the mat, Jennifer is a social worker, committed to helping others improve their lives.  She is also an avid CrossFitter, and occasionally participates in local competitions.

Why Aikido for Kids?

Unshakable Confidence

No other activity can compare with martial arts training when it comes to instilling individual confidence. As a child progresses through our program, her increasing confidence enables her to excel in academic performance, reduce peer pressure, deter bullies, and use her skills for non-violent conflict resolution.

Improved Self-Discipline

Parents tell us that one of the main benefits they see from our program is the improvement in their child’s discipline & self-control. Our staff of professional and patient instructors finds the right balance between fun and discipline, setting clear limits on acceptable behavior. Instructors insist that students maintain this disciplined lifestyle in school and in daily life.

Birankai SC (altered) 6-10-12


Kenjutsu Seminar, March 26-28 (click to download PDF flyer)

Class with Donovan Waite, 7th Dan
Next Tuesday evening RoL is pleased to host Donovan Waite, Seventh Dan teaching class from 6:30 pm to 8 pm. Please come and join us! (click to watch on YouTube)

Class Schedule