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The  USAF is an association of dojos under the technical direction of Yoshimitsu Yamada Sensei. A direct student of Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of aikido, Yamada Sensei created the USAF along with Kanai Sensei, Chiba Sensei and Tohei Sensei. Yamada Sensei is currently the USAF Chief Instructor and Technical Advisor. 


  • encourages friendship and cooperation among its member dojos and aikido dojos world wide, 

  • communicates aikido information for the benefit of its member dojos, 

  • announces aikido seminars sponsored by member dojos and 

  • hosts an annual week-long summer camp which is open to all aikido students. 

  • works diligently to provide transparency through various methods of communications and offers administrative support to Chief Instructors and dojo-cho.

In addition to the USAF issuing kyu (white belt level) certificates for its members, the USAF is officially recognized by Aikikai World Headquarters (honbu dojo) in Tokyo, Japan, through which it registers all dan promotions.​ The USAF maintains friendly relationships with other aikido based organizations as part of its role as the US representative to the International Aikido Federation (IAF). It also has strong relationships with dojos in South America, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Southeast Asia.  A direct lineage to O-Sensei and close relations with Hombu Dojo and Doshu (world leader of aikido) enhance the unique qualities of the USAF. A bright future for aikido in the United States is as vital to the USAF as its history.

USAF History



Governance of the USAF is through the Board of Director and the Technical Committee under the leadership of Yamada Sensei. 

Day-to-day operations are handled by the Director of Operations and Assistant to the Director.

All Board and Committee members are volunteers, donating their time, expertise and experience to ensure that policies and decisions reflect the best interest of the USAF and its members. 



There is an application process for a dojo to join the USAF. Individuals gain membership by belonging to a USAF dojo. 

  • Member dojos have access to an interactive database for tasks such as:

    • maintaining membership records, rank processing and posting seminars

    • sharing resources from children's class initiatives to insurance recommendations

    • processing annual renewals and adding new members

  • Communication with our instructors is a primary focus. This outreach includes but is not limited to:

    • virtual meetings with instructors

    • online classes taught by our instructors, spanning diverse backgrounds, experience, and teaching styles

    • a private FB group for day-to-to communications

    • regular email correspondence

    • instructors meeting held at our annual summer camps, and

    • an online newsletter that welcomes member contributions

The USAF does not interfere with the internal workings of a dojo, as they are run autonomously and independently. Maintaining membership requires acting in accordance with the USAF Membership Regulations, Code of Conduct, USAF Testing Requirements and other USAF policies and procedures.

For information on how your dojo can join the USAF, contact

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