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Our Organization - AikiConcepts

In 1989 a group of Central Indiana martial artists from a wide variety of styles began meeting in Indianapolis to discuss ways the Asian arts could make more of a contribution to our culture. A number of meetings were held in which participants discussed all of the nonphysical lessons they had benefited from in their study of arts as diverse as Tae Kwon Do, Judo, Tai Chi and Aikido. This group determined that a tax-exempt, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to the broad education of the Central Indiana community, one that drew its traditions from eastern martial arts, would contribute greatly to the well-being of individuals and families within the broader community.

It was felt that such an organization could begin to develop programs that were outside the offerings of most martial arts schools at the time. While the major focus of the organization would be towards the education of adults and young adults it was also envisioned that programs directly targeted to younger people could also provide much-needed insights into alternative strategies for developing strong character and less aggressive ways of protecting oneself – both physically and psychologically.

When a name was considered for this group words that connoted some form of energy, renewal, philosophical and spiritual underpinnings were all considered. Some names such as Chrysalis, Phoenix and New Beginnings were considered and discarded. Eventually, the group decided that the characters embodied in the Japanese calligraphy for blending (Ai) and universal energy (Ki) were the most appropriate ways to describe an organization devoted to utilizing traditional Eastern martial arts in nonconventional situations. AikiConcepts was born.

For more than 30 years AikiConcepts has been involved in presenting programs in churches, schools, public facilities and private buildings in which individuals can pursue a variety of activities such as classes in Tai Chi, Aikido, ball and stick, Jodo, Asian dance, Capoeira and meditation.

Programs have included such diverse applications as martial arts classes for individuals and families, summer programs for disadvantaged youth focused on personal and public safety, exercise and stress reduction programs for teachers and other educational staff, self defense classes for women and curriculum-based programs for at risk high school and junior high school students in alternative education schools.

AikiConcepts has even been involved in the creation of charter school and private school models in which a program centered around the benefits of character development, anger management and preparation to become a professional martial arts instructor were central elements of the academic program.