Kelly Tan Sensei
Chief Instructor & Founder
Kelly Tan caught the martial arts bug early in his life. The history began when he was 15. Then living in a ‘kampong’, where electronic entertainment like the iPads and Playstations of today were not yet in existence, he set out to find something interesting to do, and chanced upon an old monk teaching Wushu to a group of his ‘kampong’ friends at a temple not too far from his home. He continued to train Wushu at the temple until the old monk’s passing two years later.
At 19 years of age, both his uncles thought that, as a young man embarking on his journey into adulthood, Kelly needed to have martial arts training to “toughen himself up”. One uncle was the late Chua Siew Heng, and the other uncle, was the late Teddy Lee Meng Kum; both of which many consider to be the pioneers of Aikido in Singapore. At the same time, after being encouraged by some of his friends, he took up Karate. And so Kelly was training in both Aikido and Karate until he reached his 30s, when advancement in his career was making it difficult for him to find the time to train in both martial arts. He gave up Karate.
On why he chose Aikido: “I like the non-aggressive nature of the art. There are so many variations to the simplest of techniques, and this keeps the art interesting. It is graceful and soft, which is important now that I am an old man at 65.” he quips.
Kelly’s interests are many, they include sailing, motor racing, golf and music. He used to be part of a Singaporean band in the 60s called The Meltones, and still actively plays music today.
Hironobu Yamada Shihan
Hironobu Yamada Shihan began his Aikido training in 1963 at Jiyugaoka Dojo in Tokyo under Hiroshi Tada Shihan.
In 1976, Yamada Shihan independently established his first dojo, "JAL Aikido Club", which held its trainings inside the Narita International Airport. Since then, he has gone on to establish more Aikido dojos in several cities in the Chiba Prefecture of Japan, such as Sanbu City, Tomisato City, Ichihara City and Yachimata City. All of which are now under Hokuso Aikikai's umbrella, which he helms.
Yamada Shihan is also very well linked outside of Japan, with dojos from Russia, Holland, Brazil, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Indonesia and Sri Lanka.
Instructors & Assistant Instructors
An integral part of the Aikido Kenshin-Kai family, these individuals not only support the Instructors and Assistant Instructors during classes, they also aid in fostering a positive culture in the dojo. But perhaps their most important task is to help answer whimsical questions our playful children Aikidokas will often ask.
In the team are: Dorothy Barrett, Joanna Loy, Yeo Kwee Boon, Don Tong, Qwek Chin Ming, Wong TC, Anson Phua and Yuka Yokuta.