Sakurakai was started in April of 1993 by Ando Sensei`s first wife Naomi Sensei. Sakurakai has a few branches throughout Chiba and is a group mainly for women, but of course men are also welcome.
Ogawa Tokiko Sensei (6th dan) has been running the group for about 20 years now with the help of Maihama Sakurakai instructor Omura Sensei, Monday instructor Mori sensei and other senior blackbelts.
During my uchideshi years I taught once or twice
a month at both the Maihama club and the Tuesday class at the Chuo Budokan.
Maihama Sakurakai has a friendly open atmosphere. Omura Sensei, husband Mike, Yamazaki-san, Murata-san and all the core members are always ready to welcome guests. Visitors to Ryu Honbu Dojo almost always make sure to get a day in training with them. I recommend it to all.
Ogawa Sensei`s group is laid back but serious when it comes to aikido. Everyone is tight knit and work well together. They take care of their own and have a unique simple but warm family atmosphere.
The 25th anniversary demonstration was exactly as to be expected. Hand written invitations, Friendly smiles, great hospitality,a bit of humour and of course some hard aikido by some of the top women in Yoshinkan.
Congratulations once again to all the past and present Sakurakai members for making this club what it has become today. Gentle and friendly elegance mixed with power, pride and passion.
See you at the 30th!