" When an individual makes a conscious decision to begin martial training, they do so for many reasons. Some undergo training to simply learn self-defense while others do it to better themselves in their daily lives. What is just as important as the decision to begin training is the decision on where to train. As for me, that decision was made on October 23, 2002. I remember very vividly (and quite fondly) walking into the school to find out more about Nihon Goshin Aikido. On that particular night, Shihan Beckham was instructing the advanced class. As soon as I walked into the school, I was immediately greeted by Shihan Beckham and made to feel welcome. That was something that I had not experienced while visiting other schools in the area. After having had all of my questions answered, I immediately signed up to begin training.
The many years of training have truly been a blessing to me. Not only have I gained skill in a martial art, I have also learned tremendously about myself as a person. It has truly enriched my personal life. However, the training is very difficult. It takes many years to achieve a black belt or Shodan level. In our school, only 22 people have reached this accomplishment. Potential students who are considering training at our school must ask themselves an extremely important question. Am I doing this for the color of a belt tied around my waist or am I doing this to learn a particular skill and to better myself personally? If the individual chose the latter question, then I feel that our school would be a great place to begin their training.
In addition to the training, I can also say that I have found a new family throughout the years. I can honestly say that I have always been impressed with the caliber of students that we have and I am very proud to be associated with them. I also take great pride in calling them my friends as I have developed many life-long friendships as a result of my training at the Aikido School of Self Defense."