robert nadeau shihan

Robert Nadeau Shihan

Robert Nadeau was a personal student of the founder of Aikido, Morihei Ueshiba Osensei, and is one of the most senior teachers of Aikido active in the world today.  He holds the rank of 8th dan and was certified as shihan (master teacher) by Aikido World Headquarters (Hombu Dojo). 

Nadeau-shihan leads regularly scheduled classes several times a week at City Aikido of San Francisco and Aikido of Mountain View. His teaching approach is deeply rooted in Osensei’s process for using the practice of Aikido techniques -- throws, pins, locks, posture, breathing and body movement --  and the context of martial arts (budo) as a path for personal development. 

Nadeau-shihan has been a key figure in the growth and development of Aikido in America. He co-founded first the Aikido Association of Northern California (AANC), and then the California Aikido Association (CAA), which has grown into an international community of more than 100 affiliated dojos.

Nadeau-shihan  began his martial arts training in the 1950's, studying judo, karate and defensive tactics as a police officer in Redwood City, California, and in the US Marine Corps. He also studied yoga and bodybuilding with Walt Baptiste in San Francisco. In the early 1960's he left police work and traveled to Japan to study Aikido at Hombu Dojo in Tokyo. Eventually he became a personal student of Morihei Ueshiba Osensei, receiving direct instruction in the spiritual, philosophical, and energetic aspects of Aikido from the founder.

In the late 1960s, Nadeau-shihan returned to California to teach Aikido, establishing dojos in Mountain View, San Francisco and San Jose. Starting in the 1970s, he introduced Aikido concepts into the fields of psychology and the human potential movement, bodywork, business, sports, and art through numerous seminars at the Esalen Institute in California, and at other personal growth centers across the country and abroad. Nadeau-shihan continues to teach Aikido seminars in California and elsewhere. 

Robert Nadeau has been widely recognized for his contribution to the teaching of the spiritual aspects of Aikido training, profoundly influencing generations of Aikido teachers in America, Europe, Russia, Israel, and New Zealand. His work is featured in more than a dozen books by well-known authors including Michael Murphy, George Leonard and Dan Millman. If you'd like to learn more about Nadeau Shihan –  in his own words – please read the Aikido Journal interview here. Or just come observe one of his classes!