Video: Yamada Sensei’s memorial seminar – Bernau 2023

Bernau 2019

Group photo from Bernau summer camp by Gabor Megyesi.

Dan tests update

The examination requirements for USAF/Sansuikai for the kyu and dan degrees can be found here. The requirements for kyu depend on the dojo. These for dan degrees are mandatory for all Sansuikai members.

For dan test You must fill up Aikikai documentation. Please read the text below before proceeding to complete the documentation!

Each examinee is required to fill in the electronic form, print it out and provide it to the Yamada Sensei. Person applying for Shodan completes ‘Shodan application form’. Those who are applying for Nidan or above fill ‘Nidan or above application form’. Each document contains few sheets.

Yamada Sensei will accept dan application forms 2 times a year from now on, May and August. So the best time to take a test is seminar in Mallorca or in Bernau. If You have application forms before May or August, You have to hold them until then.

Important instructions on how to complete the documentation (mandatory):

  • All fields in the form must be typed (do not hand writing). Filled application form must be printed and then signed by applicant.
  • Do not forget to put number of attendance days after Your last test (right up corner). You should put only practicing days – days You spent on the mat since last test. For minimum number of days refer to the USAF test requirements. For example, if You practice 3 times a week, during the year, You have approximately 156 practicing days per year. According to the USAF requirements for Shodan You must have 300 practicing days. It means You have to practice 2 years, 3 times a week after 1st kyu.
  • Name of organization is: USAF/Sansuikai,
  • All dates must be in the format DD/MMM/YEAR, e.g: 24/AUG/2019
  • At “present rank information” put the place and date of Your last test,
  • If You are taking test in Bernau 2019 at “date of examination” please put 24/AUG/2019,
  • Examiner’s name: Yoshimitsu Yamada
  • Do not fill field called “For Aikikai Use” (left up corner),
  • Do not fill fields “Examination Fee” and “Registration fee”.
  • For Shodan do not fill “Aikikai membership No.” and “Date of Aikikai registration”. Only for Nidan and above You fill up this fields (number and the date You could find in Your Yudansha Book).

Please print Your forms, and do not forget to put Your signature at all documents.

For Shodan You fill up sheets “Shodan form 1″ and “SHODAN FORM 2&3.Enrol&Y-book” from this document:

Shodan application form

For Nidan and up you fill up only 1 sheet on the bottom “2ND, 3RD, 4TH DAN FORM 1″:

Nidan or above application form

Test Prices:

  • 1 Dan: $200
  • 2 Dan: $200
  • 3 Dan: $250
  • 4 Dan: $400
  • 5 Dan: $1000
  • 6 Dan: $1200

Alain Salée has passed away

We are very sorry to hear about the loss of one of our Sansuikai teachers, Alain Salée, 7th dan Aikikai, chief instructor of Aikikai Verviers, Santan Ryu. He died age 79.

We met Alain many years ago at the yearly summer camp in La Colle-sur-Loup in France, to which he went many times to study aikido with Tamura sensei and Yamada sensei.

Alain was one of the aikido pioneers in Belgium and one of the longest active aikido practitioners in Belgium. He started practicing Judo back in 1952. We’re not entirely sure about when he started aikido but probably that was around 1960. He studied with Noro sensei, Tamura sensei, Yamada Sensei, Sugano sensei and Asai Sensei, among others and taught aikido in Verviers in Belgium.

As a profession he was a policeman. Once retired, he build a new dojo in Verviers and continued to teach aikido there until his death in 2018. He was a respected example of an aikido practitioner dedicating his life to studying and teaching Aikido.

You can read an interview with him in the Aikido Journal (French version) from 2005.

Rest in peace, Alain.

Good news

Dear Aikido Community,

We are pleased to inform you that Yamada Sensei’s operation this morning was a complete success. He came through strong, as expected, and we should see him on the mat soon.

While we are very grateful for your support and well-wishes, please understand that we are unable to reply to all of the individual emails and phone calls. We will provide updates when available and keep you as informed as possible.

New Dan application forms

Aikikai Hombu Dojo started using new electronic application forms. Please check ‘Dan test’ page for details.

Letter from the New York Aikikai

To The Aikido Community, Students and Friends of Yamada Sensei,

Yamada Sensei has communicated with the aikido community through the US Aikido Federation, Europe, Australia and South America about his recent operation.

The operation was a success and Yamada Sensei is making exceptional progress in terms of regaining his pre-operative health. He continues to impress his medical team with his recovery. At the New York Aikikai he has resumed his full teaching schedule; the intensity and energy level of his classes have not diminished a bit.

That said, he is still in the recovery process. Yamada Sensei’s doctors would like his strength, conditioning and healing to proceed unimpeded so that his recovery will be full and complete. They have urged him to restrict his exhaustive travel schedule for the next several months in order for that to happen. Ideally it would be best for Yamada Sensei to limit those trips that are the most demanding because of flight lengths and teaching schedules.

If you are hosting one of his seminars please be understanding of Yamada Sensei’s recovery especially if he should need to postpone your event. This is all temporary; Yamada Sensei has every intention of resuming his teaching schedule around the world. His return to full health is the key to that happening.

Thank you.

Steve Pimsler
President, NY Aikikai