(Semi-Retired as of June 2018. Not Accepting New Students.)
Parker Sensei, Founder and Chief Instructor of Mumonkan-Do Aikido, began her Aikido training in 1980 and served as uch-deshi (apprentice) to Tourda Sensei from 1981-1986. She holds a California Community College teaching credential and she taught Aikido at Orange Coast College for 25 years. Though retired now from her position at Orange Coast College, she continues, in a semi-retired status, as the senior instructor at Mumonkan-Do Aikido.
Sensei Parker taught group classes at the dojo for 33 years straight. In June 2018, she moved into a semi-retirement status, and so no longer teaches group classes. She currently teaches only private and semi-private lessons for those students who have been dedicated students of hers for 10-25 years. Because of her semi-retired status, she is not accepting new students. Most of her time is spent seeing private clients in her healing practices. Click here for more about Parker Sensei.
(Retired from teaching in 1996)
McBratney Sensei, Parker Sensei’s first black belt, created the Youth Program at Mumonkan-Do Aikido in 1991. He taught the youth class until 1996, when he retired in order to spend more time with his developing family. Their first child was born in April 1997 . . . and their SIXTH child was born in October 2007. Though family commitments took him away from his training, Aikido was “in his blood” (his words). As evidence of his love for Aikido, he returned to train (believe it or not) in 2016. But work and family demands, again, took him away from us. Parker Sensei and McBratney Sensei remain teacher and student, and are still in regular contact. McBratney Sensei’s strong spirit will always remain within the walls of the Mumonkan-Do Dojo. He excelled in both aspects of Aikido partnership -- as the executor of technique (she-te) and the receiver of technique (uke).
McBratney Sensei as She-te
McBratney Sensei as Uke
(Retired from teaching in 2005)
When McBratney Sensei retired, Brooks Sensei (Parker Sensei’s second black belt) took on the majority of administrative tasks at the dojo as well some of the teaching responsibility. Following in his senior’s footsteps, he too excelled in both aspects of Aikido partnership – She-te and Uke. Ukemi is the art of being uke. The quality of she-te’s practice depends on how well uke has learned this art. Brooks Sensei took the “art of being uke” to a whole other level, and that is what he remains known for, to this day. Parker Sensei still refers to his abilities in this area. There were none superior and his “ukemi” continues to be the “gold standard” at Mumonkan-Do Aikido. A job transfer forced Brooks Sensei to move out of state and so he retired in 2005. Much like his predecessor, Parker Sensei and Brooks Sensei remain teacher and student, and are still in regular contact. And much like his predecessor, Brooks Sensei’s spirit continues to pervade the walls of Mumonkan-Do Aikido.
Brooks Sensei as She-te with multiple attackers
Brooks Sensei as Uke to Parker Sensei
(Retired from teaching in June 2018)
Senpai Okuma began his study of Aikido in 1989. He was a dedicated student of Mumonkan-Do for over 25 years. He began teaching at our dojo in 2005 – teaching both adults and youth. Rarely over that 13 years did he miss a day of teaching and students loved him. He exemplified many of the Classical Budo Traits (courage, selflessness, committed to something beyond himself, willing to suffer for a higher goal, and loyalty). Though all Parker Sensei’s senior students exemplify humility, Senpai Okuma stands out as the “first among equals” in this regard. Senpai Okuma, a sincere and dedicated student and teacher of Aikido, retired in June 2018 because he was needed at home to care for his aging mother.
Senpai Okuma as She-te
Senpai Okuma Teaching Youth Class