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Kami
05-09-2002, 06:14 PM
Hello,All!

Gakku Homma Sensei is a respected aikido instructor. He's independent, that is, he's unnafiliated with any organization.
It seems he studied with Morihiro Saito Sensei but is not affiliated with his Iwama Ryu.
Does anyone knows what is his ranking? Does he gives ranking to his students?
Any information will be welcome.
Best

drneal
12-12-2005, 08:22 AM
I studied with Gakku Homma briefly but most memorably in 1981, as he came to Pensacola, Florida. He owns the largest Aiki Dojo in the world in Colorado. He was a Uchi Deshi to Morei Ueshiba for the final 15 years of his life. His style of teaching because of his study with O'Sensei in his finaly years was a very soft style, in contrast to another Uchi Deshi of O'Sensei Mitsugi Saotome, who was my Shihan of the Aikido Schools of Ueshiba who studied with O'Sensei during the first 15 years or so of his younger years when he was developing Aikido, and teaches a harder style, which actually gives you both ends of the spectrum. Saotome Sensei, teaches you to have a choice, if your life is in danger, you have the option of ending the fight with an ending technique, or if there is hope that this person may turn from his ways, you have the choice of either pinning this person in hopes of talking some sense and perhaps even making friends which has actually happened to me. Gakku Homma is very flowing and a very funny and witty man. We drank very much Saki and I never saw him excuse himself to the restroom once. He must have a bladder the size of a basketball, and yet, he had us up training on the beautiful white sands of the Pensacola beach with Jo practice just a couple hours after bedtime, just as though he had had a full 8 hours sleep. He is quite an extrordinary person to learn from, and I have kept in touch with email with him as recent as a year or so ago. He is the author of multi dozens of books, found in just about any bookstore, and very approachable. I hope this helps. God Bless,

Dr. Neal Schiesske
http://www.agapediet.com

drneal
12-12-2005, 10:06 AM
I studied with Gakku Homma briefly but most memorably in 1981, as he came to Pensacola, Florida. He owns the largest Aiki Dojo in the world in Colorado. He was a Uchi Deshi to Morei Ueshiba for the final 15 years of his life. His style of teaching because of his study with O'Sensei in his finaly years was a very soft style, in contrast to another Uchi Deshi of O'Sensei Mitsugi Saotome, who was my Shihan of the Aikido Schools of Ueshiba who studied with O'Sensei during the first 15 years or so of his younger years when he was developing Aikido, and teaches a harder style, which actually gives you both ends of the spectrum. Saotome Sensei, teaches you to have a choice, if your life is in danger, you have the option of ending the fight with an ending technique, or if there is hope that this person may turn from his ways, you have the choice of either pinning this person in hopes of talking some sense and perhaps even making friends which has actually happened to me. Gakku Homma is very flowing and a very funny and witty man. We drank very much Saki and I never saw him excuse himself to the restroom once. He must have a bladder the size of a basketball, and yet, he had us up training on the beautiful white sands of the Pensacola beach with Jo practice just a couple hours after bedtime, just as though he had had a full 8 hours sleep. He is quite an extrordinary person to learn from, and I have kept in touch with email with him as recent as a year or so ago. He is the author of multi dozens of books, as well as a best selling childrens book found in just about any bookstore, and he is very approachable. He has not affiliated with any mainstream Aikido Group, and has studied multiple techniques and styles such as Daihonzan Eiheiji, Eiheiji Zen Temple, Rev. Zikisai Muto, Higashi Naruse Mura, Japan. If you want to look at his website you can see it at: http://www.nippon-kan.org/aikido-nippon-kan/what_is_aikido.html or you can get in touch with the dojo by calling: (303) 595-8256. The name of his dojo is Nippon Kan Dojo and is located in Denver, Colorado. It is the headquarters of A.H.A.N. , or the American Humanitarian Active Network, or if you would like to read an article by Gakku Homma, you can read it at: http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showthread.php?p=75592 .
I hope this helps. God Bless,

Dr. Neal Schiesske
http://www.agapediet.com

bkedelen
12-12-2005, 10:37 AM
I am really not trying to be offensive, but the number of factual errors in that post is staggering.

Here are three just off of the top of my head:

Homma Sensei's dojo, while very nice, is not even close to the largest in the world. It is not even the largest in Colorado unless you count the restaurant and garden as part of the dojo.

Saotome Shihan was Osensei's student at the end of Osensei's days, not at the beginning. Stan Pranin would blow a vessel if he knew that inaccuracies like this were being bandied about. Please review aikidojournal.com for accurate information about where, when, and how long people trained with Osensei.

The description of Saotome Sensei's Aikido teachings is extremely coarse and a quick glance at Aikido and the Harmony of Nature reveals that Saotome's real Aikido message is not particularly compatible with the above statement.

crbateman
12-12-2005, 10:42 AM
I believe Homma Sensei gives Nippon Kan rankings to his students, although it's possible that Dan rankings could be presented to Aikikai for certification. I'm not sure about this though. Perhaps someone from Nippon Kan might reply to this thread. Homma Sensei has actually written four English-language Aikido books and one cookbook. None of his Aikido books mentions anything about rank, although I'm sure he probably has Aikikai rank, and perhaps Iwama rank as well. He was very close to Saito Sensei. He just doesn't advertise his rankings. I have trained with him at seminars, and I can assure you, he knows his stuff.

Mark Uttech
12-12-2005, 11:22 AM
thanks to Benjamin Eden for setting a straighter record on Saotome shihan.
In gassho

Travis Johnson
12-12-2005, 01:30 PM
I studied about a year ago with my old instructor who had previously practiced under Homma Sensei. If i'm not mistaken, i think my instructor said that Homma Sensei recently earned 7th Dan.
-Travis

crbateman
12-12-2005, 01:41 PM
Homma Sensei's dojo, while very nice, is not even close to the largest in the world. It is not even the largest in Colorado unless you count the restaurant and garden as part of the dojo.Maybe he was thinking that Homma Sensei's BLADDER was the largest in the world... ;)

Rupert Atkinson
12-12-2005, 06:57 PM
I studied with Gakku Homma briefly but most memorably in 1981, as he came to Pensacola, Florida. He owns the largest Aiki Dojo in the world in Colorado. He was a Uchi Deshi to Morei Ueshiba for the final 15 years of his life.

15 years? - I could be wrong but I heard it was maybe just the last year or so of O Sensei's life. I'm sure someone will be checking that out anyway.

David Yap
12-13-2005, 03:18 AM
Hi all,

There are some great articles written by Gaku Homma sensei in the Sensei's Column of Nipponkan website. Based on the articles, the timeline would be:

Started aikido in Akita under Shuji Maruyama sensei in 1963.
Uchideshi in Iwama dojo 1967-1969
Shidoin in Hombu dojo early 70's
Arrived US in 1976

Last Aikikai rank - 5th dan (I guessed)

David Y

MM
12-14-2005, 09:17 AM
I was fortunate enough to attend a seminar of Homma sensei's in Oklahoma City. The only time I had with him was at the seminar, but he was a great instructor. If you have any questions about Homma sensei, I would suggest either attending one of his seminars or contact his dojo. You can view his website here:
http://www.nippon-kan.org/index1.html

Ranking information and affiliations are found here:
http://www.nippon-kan.org/aikido-nippon-kan/what_is_aikido.html

If you still have questions, contact him. :)

Mark

Joe Bowen
12-14-2005, 08:26 PM
(b. 12 May 1950) Also Manabu. B. Akita Prefecture. Aikido instructor. Trained as an uchideshi in Iwama and Aikikai Hombu Dojo in Tokyo under the Founder Morihei Ueshiba and Morihiro SAITO in the late 1960s. Relocated to Denver, Colorado in 1976 where he is active as an independent teacher of aikido. Founded the Nippon Kan as an independent dojo in 1978. Has organized several large aikido seminars in Denver taught notably by Morihiro Saito. Author of numerous books and articles about aikido.

I've had the pleasure of attending an impromptu class with him one time. I would not characterize his Aikido as being "very soft". He has a very Iwama or Saito Sensei feel to his techniques (whatever the hell that means). I would say that he is a good instructor and since he has spent a lot of time in the US, I think he is very good at relating his Aikido to typical American ways of thinking. I don't know his ranking, but he seems to be still relatively young in comparison to the other O'Sensei Uchideshi that I have met. He is a very approachable person, and seems very nice. I do believe but cannot confirm that even though his dojo is independent of any organization in the US, he still is connected/ affiliated with the Aikikai Hombu dojo in Japan. I have read most of his books (except the cookbook) and they are all worth reading. Hope that helps...

joe