08-03-2012, 04:24 PM
My name is Nick Hentschel, and I'm a new-fledged aikidoka in Austin, Texas. I have recently (5 weeks ago) begun my studies at the Austin Aikikai (http://www.austinaikikai.org/), under Damir Jamsek and his fellow instructors. So far, it's going quite well... but my ankles hurt like all hell from sitting in seiza!
My decision to study aikido marks a return to the martial arts after and 8-year layoff, following the closure of my old school in 2004 (previously, I had studied Hapkido). I also took some Japanese in college, but ma badly out of practice, as it was almost 15 years ago! Regardless, I look forward to absorbing everything that my school can show me.
I have intended to pursue the martial arts ever since I properly learned what they were, more than 30 years ago. And ever since I learned what aikido was, I was certain that this, or something very like it, was the one I wanted to study. At last, here I am.
I'm 37 years old, just under 6'1", and in very good shape from riding everywhere on a bicycle, my entire life. I have a BA Theater Arts from Northern Illinois University, with upper-division honors, as well as a degree in CAD from ITT (neither of which has helped me much). I'm currently self-employed as a dog-walker, although I'm looking for better opportunities. And I have Asperger's Syndrome, which may explain my quirky interests (see below), tortured career path, and need for aikido as a form of discipline and therapy. I hope to offer much to any discussions involving disabilities & aikido, especially as it pertains to the autism spectrum.
My favorite technique is the forward roll, which I seem to be doing very well.;) I like bicycles, animals, reading, music, survival/camping skills, sci-fi/fantasy, cooking, and above all else, NATURE in all its forms.
I'm interested in many aspects of aikido practice, but will always have a bit of a bias towards martial technique. I say this, however, not because I feel it's the only valid aspect, but because that's simply the kind of personality that I have. I'm all for tolerance and diversity in the martial arts, especially in aikido, and am no big fan of partisanship or sectarianism. People who bash the martial arts, or aikido, I won't even pay attention to; they always regurgitate the same old lines, anyway.
So, I'm glad to meet all of you, and eager to join the conversation!
Welcome to AikiWeb and thank you for your introduction.
08-04-2012, 02:48 PM
Hey nick! Welcome. You picked a great dojo! Great teacher and great people! Please give my regards to damir and sherry and damien et al.
By the way, Damien is a Chicago transplant like you.
08-04-2012, 04:03 PM
If you want to know the truth, I'm originally from NEW JERSEY! My parents moved me around quite a bit, you see; Illinois was simply the last place I lived before coming to Texas. (Much of my family is still there, though.)
I'll extend your regards, nonetheless.