Self Defense Physical Fitness Recreation

Includes Weapons And Multiple Attacker Training

Located near Preston Hwy and Outer Loop. Easy access from I-65

We Invite You To Join Us In This Exciting Art

Shortly after beginning formal judo classes in 1963 at Louisville's Downtown YMCA, I became aware of aikido and waited for the teacher to arise; this student was ready.

But, it was almost half a century later when I met Aikido Master, Sensei John Kilpatrick. I consider him one of the finest martial arts instructors whom I've had the pleasure to know these last 4-5 decades.

Sensei Kilpatrick wrote an important article, "Judo vs. Aikido", which is being considered for publication by Black Belt magazine. Among other observations, he noted that while aiki does not do so, judoka use their feet and legs as weapons.

This is also noteworthy: O-Sensei Phil Porter, Judan (10th degree Black Belt) compiled five hours worth of dvd instruction on how to counter ippon seoinage, "one-arm shoulder throw", the most attempted judo throw at shiai (judo tournaments). I asked Sensei Kilpatrick his take. With a single step, subtle and simple, he showed me how to counter this technique; this response to the powerful throw was the most effective I've witnessed in person or dvd...

Shortly thereafter, I promoted John to the rank of Shodan (1st degree Black Belt) in Kodokan Judo. This is one promotion I will never regret.

Sensei Kilpatrick and I have undertaken to understand and blend our respective Japanese arts and therefore continue the martial arts dialectic, forming a new martial art we call "aiki judo". In addition to throws from both arts as well as judo pins, armlocks and chokes, there will be aiki strikes (while judo has atemi waza, striking techniques, they are banned from competition). We intend to incorporate strikes as well, endeavoring to return to bushi spirit and principles.

John eschews what some call "aikido ballet". He makes the art work, makes it a viable self-defense art, returns it to the real world. He analyzes aikido techniques, teaches those that work and discards those that don't.

There are many paths up the mountain, it is said, and Sensei Kilpatrick walks the true aikido path to the top.

John Kilpatrick is a remarkable scholar of the martial arts and I expect we will learn more about him---and from him---for decades to come.

Carl Brown
8th Dan Judo
1st Dan Jujitsu
Grand Master Imua Kuon Tao Kung Fu
Louisville, KY

I saw your Hikuta sections on your site- GREAT job!
In a newsleter I'll plug your site and school.

Jack Savage
Master Instructor of Hikuta
Tactical ops/spec ops specializing in counter-terrorism

As an Infantry Officer I have no reservations about giving my strongest recommendation to Dr. Kilpatrick. He has the in depth experience, mentality, and practicality to expand on our modern army combatives program. Any Soldier would benefit from additional training with him. His practical approach is the hallmark of his training.


Lance Hublick

As a progressive defense and security consultant, I have to continually advance my skill sets to stay ahead of the antagonistic criminal mind in order to provide cutting edge training to the civilian population. John Kilpatrick's class helps to do this by providing a superior mindset and training philosophy that is sure to prove victorious when nothing but victory is acceptable. This type of training differs from others by becoming part of your instinctive and reflexive attitude rather than trying to memorize complex movements that can be hard or even impossible to execute in a high stress environment. His no-nonsense approach accelerates the student's ability to learn and retain defensive strategy in a way that is not overwhelming or confusing. One should not feel intimidated or out of place at any experience level. John's patient and helpful personality is sure to make even the beginner feel comfortable to train and ask questions without fear of embarrassment. If you are defending our nation and its objectives or if you are defending your children and loved ones, John is sure to have a defensive strategy applicable to your needs.

Ryan Ingwersen
Progressive Defense and Security Consultant

I have been a student of the martial arts for twenty years as of this writing. I studied aikido first, and eventually left the art due to a gnawing dissatisfaction with its combat effectiveness. The other arts I ran across, including Hung Gar and Kali, were interesting but also left me with a hollow feeling. Something was missing. Teachers would move away, college got in the way, and I left the dojo for a long time, practicing with friends when the opportunity arose.

I met John Kilpatrick in December of 2010, and my life changed for the better! I once read something to the effect of, "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear." I must have been ready, because the teacher appeared. John understands aiki. Why is this important? I've had one other aikido instructor, sadly deceased, who understood aiki (at least in terms of the aiki jujustu techniques normally taught as aikido), so what sets John apart? He can teach it, and he can do so in a simple, straightforward manner that leaves no question as to its supreme importance in combat. I felt like a beginner again, and I was, but I didn't feel that way for long. After three or four months with John I felt more confident in facing multiple attackers than I did after all my years in other schools, and a single attacker, though obviously a serious consideration, then seemed not nearly so daunting. Then John, great friend that he has become, brought me back down to earth and showed me what I didn't know. I was a beginner again! Then John performed the impossible task of teaching me what I didn't know. It is an amazing cyclic phenomenon, an evolutionary process.

John is constantly refining his art, and I call it his art because I know of no other person doing it like he does it. Just when you think it can't get any better...it gets better. I am honored to be a small part of this process, and I'm almost frightened to think of where it might go. If it's this good now, how great will it be a year from now? I can't wait to find out, and I'm overjoyed to be on the front line. Many thanks to John, the teacher who finally appeared.

Erik Riker

Simply put. My experience with aikikuta for 7 months has eclipsed my prior martial art's training of 5 + years with tae kwon do, karate & aikido. I feel more confident with my ability to defend myself than I ever have, and actually have fun practicing this art with Sensei. I strongly recommend this art to anyone who would like a simple, easy to use system, which can be learned quickly.

Greg Ross
Louisville, KY

What is Okolona Aikido in Louisville Kentucky?

Read My Book On Aikido!

Okolona Aikido in Louisville Kentucky offers systematic, combat oriented Aikido. Aikido is normally taught as numerous separate techniques that take many years to learn. Systematic means that we approach Aikido as simple principles of taking breaking balance and structure. This is combined with a few basic body movements to produce all of the techniques.

Combat oriented means that we both attack and defend using the Aikido principles and basic movements. In addition to these basics we also practice defending against common attacks one is likely to encounter. We study weapons both as training tools for the Aiki principles and as fighting implements. We emphasize reflex development, combat strategy and Aiki striking as well as the basic Aikido throws and submissions. We use foam padded weapons for much of our training and we practice ground fighting.

Dojo Etiquette

Martial art is what we do for fun. We want to stay physically fit and learn to defend ourselves but the thing that will keep us practicing is having fun. Fun for everyone comes from treating our partners with dignity and respect.

It is not fun having your partner correcting you. We feel that we are helping our partner if we are constantly correcting them. The problem is that people feel criticized and lose much of the joy of practice. The way to help our partner is to:

  1. Be careful not to hurt your partner. If your partner tells you something is painful or taps, then back off or stop completely depending on the situation.
  2. Uke should give the kind of attacks Nage requests, and attacks that are appropriate for the technique being practiced. If your partner asks you not to do something do not do it!
  3. To help Nage, Uke should take ukame as though Nage was doing it perfectly. That is, Uke gently leads Nage with Uke's movement. Uke does not instruct Nage.
  4. If there are problems that bother you call the instructor. Do not say your partner is having problems. Just ask the instructor to explain what you perceive as a problem. You might ask, "Would you explain how to grip the wrist in this technique?"
  5. Pay attention to how your partner is reacting to you. Be sure that both of you are having fun. If you cannot work things out so that both of you are having fun then do not practice together. You might talk to the instructor for help with how to practice amicably.
  6. If you want to work on something about a technique that is different from what the instructor is doing, and the instructor is correcting you, explain what you are trying to do. Then the instructor will understand the situation and the two of you can work out a solution.
  7. Jewelry is not safe to wear. It can get caught and injure either you or your partner. Remove all jewelry before practice.
  8. Keep fingernails and toenails well trimmed. Untrimmed nails can be torn causing you considerable pain and they can cut your partners.
  9. Keep your clothes and equipment clean. Do not wear hair grease or anything else that might make the mat dirty.

Chief Instructor
John Kilpatrick, 5th Dan, Fukushidoin in Aikido and Temple Guard in Kuta, is the instructor. He became interested in Aikido in the early 60's and was able to start formal training in 1980 with Dale Mathews who was a student of Satome Sensi. When Arif Mehter and Pat Hardesty Came to Louisville he continued studying with them. They were affiliated with Yamada Sensi and the USAF. His present Aikido rank is through the U.S. Aikido Federation and the International Aikido Federation, Tokyo, Japan. His rank in Kuta, also called Hikuta, is through Jack Savage.

He tries to follow O'Sensi's life style with Aikido, growing much of his own food in a an extensive garden and orchard, and devoting considerable time to Ki development, particularly in a health and healing perspective. Training is also available in this area.

He has a Ph.D. in Psychology and a BSEE in engineering. This background gives a very technical, reasoned approach to training.

Okolona Aikido in Louisville Kentucky