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Wendy Palmer 
Shichidan - Seventh Degree Black Belt
(1947- 2022)
Her teaching is living on in all of us.

May she rest in peace
Aikido of Tamalpais teacher: Wendy Palmer

Wendy Sensei 

Wendy was an expert at challenging people to examine techniques from a different perspective. Her classes explored Aikido principles at a high level of training as she motivated students beyond their habitual training patterns. Wendy's uncanny ability to recognize individual strengths provided a platform for finding new ways to accomplish techniques without relying on force.

Wendy Palmer began training in 1971. She was drawn to the beauty and power of aikido and recognized the practice as a path to increase empowerment and love. She is the creator of Leadership Embodiment a profound approach to personal and professional development using embodied practices based on aikido. Wendy is author of three books: Leadership Embodiment: How the Way We Sit and Stand Can Change the Way We Think and Speak, The Intuitive Body: Discovering the Wisdom of Conscious Embodiment, and Aikido and The Practice of Freedom: Aikido Principles as a Spiritual Guide.

TAM Leadership Team

Greg Owens
 Godan - Fifth Degree Black Belt

Greg Sensei 

Greg has been training Aikido since 1991, and was a long-time student of George Leonard Sensei as well as of Wendy Palmer Sensei. He is a superb communicator and has a sharp eye for students' needs. Greg enjoys a vigorous training session, and is very patient and gentle with beginners. Greg is an advocate for taking aikido off the mat and does so through his leadership role with the EO network. The EO network enables business owners to learn from one another through global events, leadership development programs, online forums and education opportunities

Kirk Scott
 Godan - Fifth Degree Black Belt

Kirk Sensei 

Kirk started training aikido at Michigan State University under Jongoon Kim in 1991, and was Wendy Palmer's student from 1995- 2022. Kirk started training martial arts at the age of ten in Koei Kan Karate in 1981, and received his blackbelt in karate in 1989. 

Dolano Arthur
 Yondan - Fourth Degree Black Belt

Additional Regular Teachers at TAM in order of seniority  

Michael McCormick

 Yondan - Fourth Degree Black Belt

Michael Sensei

Aikido is the best way that Michael has found to deal with the problems of the world, both inside and out. His martial arts practice began as a child studying judo while growing up in New York City. His aikido practice began when he moved to California in 1993, joining Aikido of Tamalpais after 2 years studying with Shiohira sensei in San Francisco. Wendy Palmer sensei, George Leonard sensei, and Ikeda sensei  (as well as others such as Saotome sensei, Endo senesi, Tissier sensei, and Anno sensei) have long inspired Michael and helped to shape his technique and spirit. Frequent travel to other dojos in the US and abroad keeps Michael’s aikido growing and changing. He likes to think of his classes as a creative exploration of the art suitable for both beginners and advanced practitioners. 

Joel Yanowitz

 Yondan - Fourth Degree Black Belt


Joel Sensei 

Joel's interest in the principles underlying aikido began in his teens and early 20’s when he began practicing Tai Chi. His aikido journey began in 2001 when he joined Aikido of Tamalpais and began training with George Leonard and Wendy Palmer. Early on he developed a love for aiki weapons and is grateful to have learned so much from senseis Brian and Kirk Scott. He has a deep curiosity for how aikido can help us navigate the challenges and opportunities of our day to day life, work, and relationships as well as to help us collectively bring greater ease to the world around us.

Kimberly Woodland

 Yondan - Fourth Degree Black Belt


Kimberly Sensei

Kimberly began her Aikido journey in 1987 when she was living with her mother in Japan. Over the years she trained in various locations throughout the states, including Vermont, New Mexico, Idaho and Montana, finally landing at Aikido of Tamalpais in 2004 after some “gap years” studying Argentine tango. Kimberly considers Wendy Palmer as her primary teacher. She also draws on the depth, breadth and inspiration she has gained training with senseis Motomichi Anno, Mary Heiny, Hiroshi Ikeda, Jan Nevelius and Mitsuge Saotome. More than any one person or place, however, Kimberly has a deep appreciation for what she learns from all of her training and learning partners each time she steps on the mat. Kimberly’s classes focus on the bridge between principals and fundamentals using natural posture and movement to create easeful and joyous connection. 

Yayoi Nagano

 Nidan - Second Degree Black Belt


Yayoi Sensei

Yayoi is dedicated to the art of Aikido with a passion for cultivating a life-giving and health-promoting practice. As a certified Feldenkrais practitioner, she merges the principles of movement and mindfulness to enhance the Aikido journey. Beyond the dojo, she is deeply committed to exploring the intersection of Aikido and holistic well-being. Her interest lies in fostering a harmonious balance between the physical, mental, spiritual and social aspects of life. In her teaching, she is interested in creating an inclusive and supportive learning environment, emphasizing the interconnectedness of mind and body. Guided by the principles of harmony, respect, and self-discovery a commitment to lifelong learning and continuous improvement is at the core of her teaching philosophy. Yayoi's class embarks on a journey of self-discovery, holistic well-being, and the art of Aikido and she explores the transformative power of movement and mindfulness.

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