Joining Aikido for the past seven years has been an incredible experience. I started when I was 11 and it has taught me many valuable lessons. I originally joined it with no future goal in mind but it soon blossomed into a hobby that I wanted to dedicate my time to. Learning something new every week only made my intrigue grow more and more. Every class and seminar is valuable and influential to me. I am honored to have been taught by Sensei Bernie Ho. Learning from everyone in the dojo has also been such an unforgettable experience and I would like to thank everyone who coached me for being so incredibly patient and understanding with me. They created a friendly and welcoming environment every time. Aikido has taught me to be disciplined and diligent with myself. It has taught me to persevere through challenges and be patient with myself. Additionally, I learned the importance of how the simple act of focusing on my breathing will help clear my mind with ease. These lessons will transcend throughout my life and I will carry them with me. My academic studies have brought me overseas but my journey with Aikido will continue. I am planning to join my school’s Aikido club and hopefully join another dojo sometime in the future. Subsequently, I will return to the dojo when I am back in Singapore on holiday. Once again, I thank everyone who has been a part of this journey with me.
Ms Thuy Anh Vu
Judo Federation Dojo
Learning Aikido has been a very rewarding and fun journey for me. Bernie-sensei is a patient and skilled instructor who always manages to see the good side of his students. My fellow students are also friendly and welcoming to the newbies.
I feel that my centre of balance is much better after training and I am more limber and have better core strength as well. The weapon syllabus is very fun and its something different that I have not done before in other martial arts I've taken up previously.
Overall, I'd recommend Makoto Aikido for a fun, welcoming place to learn Aikido in Singapore.
Attiqah (aka Ten)
Jurong West Dojo
I enjoy my aikido lessons under the instruction of Bernie Sensei at Makoto dojo immensely. The gracious yet respectful environment that allows beginners like me to try without worrying about making mistakes has kept me coming back and eager to hone my skills.
Bernie Sensei's gentle but firm instruction has helped me gradually improve in my technique and his meticulous care for each of his students truly embody and represent the Makoto Aikido dojo. This spirit also shines through in the students under his tutelage. I would highly recommend this dojo for all interested to grow under an experienced and humble teacher of aikido.
Jurong West Dojo
Learning Aikido helped me to build both physical and mental flexibility and stamina. It provides mental stimulation and challenges my way of thinking that can be applied to other areas of my life.
Bernie Sensei is a very sincere, passionate and helpful teacher and I have learnt a lot from him. The learning environment is also friendly and welcoming, filled with seniors and assistant instructors who are willing to help you improve.
Leong Li Zi
Jurong West Dojo
I was fascinated by the harmonious yet effective ways of Aikido as a martial art.
To me it is not only a marital art practice but a mental and spiritual practice as well.
Every training session takes me away from the hustle and tension of life into a place where I could describe it as “peaceful”.
Back to the basis, the breathing and truly a beginner again. Learning every step of the way.
Back in 2018, I contacted Sensei Bernie Ho through knowledge of his Dojo from a close friend.
Soon after the first trial lesson, I never looked back.
Currently I've joined just past 6 months and have recently attained my 6th Kyu. I would like to thank especially Sensei Bernie Ho and all my seniors within the Dojo who have guided me through this journey, I truly enjoy every lesson I’ve attended. Looking forward to many years of training and contribution to the Dojo in days to come.
Makato Dojo possess a conducive, close knitted environment which is hard to find.
I would highly recommend Makoto Aikido Dojo and Sensei Bernie to anyone who is looking to explore Aikido.
It’s a great art to calm your mind down and focus your senses.
"Those who are possessed by nothing possess everything" - Morihei Ueshiba
Julian Ma - Makoto Aikido Judo Federation Dojo -6th Kyu
Amazing Transformation at the age of 52
In mid-2016, I was assigned by my organization to look at various martial arts for security officers and recommend one that meets the strict standards and matches closely with the organization’s use of force policy. I was looking at a martial art that trains arm locks, takedowns and simple with no complicated multi step movements.
In August 2016, I managed to contact Sensei Bernie Ho who is the Chief Instructor of Makoto Aikido and the founder/advisor with the Gurkha Dojo. Sensei patiently helped me understand the true spirit of Aikido and explained how it will enable security officers to handle physical confrontations and to de-escalate any hostile situation. With limited practical knowledge and experience myself, I had my first trial lesson on 10 August 2016 at Makoto Aikido, 1 Guillemard Crescent, where the Singapore Judo Federation Dojo is located.
Bernie Sensei has built a great Aikido school through his excellent teaching ability and has created what we call ‘a true community of practice’. Sensei is a true ‘teacher’ and his techniques are impeccable. I was impressed by the professionalism of Bernie Sensei and his instructors. The facilities and camaraderie makes for a wonderful experience and the team is always willing to teach newcomers with patience. I am very grateful for the structure, discipline and kindness I see at Makoto Aikido Dojo.
Currently, the team of security officers who are undergoing Aikido training have benefited from the skills and techniques taught during the training.
As for me, after training for 20 months, I have finally attained my 4th Kyu (brown belt). I am looking forward for many years of Aikido training with Makoto Aikido.
Similarly, if you are keen in exploring Aikido as a beginner regardless of age and gender or if you are planning to introduce Aikido skills and techniques for your security personnel, I highly recommend Chief Instructor Sensei Bernie Ho, Makoto Aikido Dojo.
“True Victory is Victory over Oneself” - Morihei Ueshiba Osensei
Marina Bay Dojo
Our life, the physical reality we experience seems dictated by unending duality: mind and matter, body and soul, good and evil, love and hate. Yet from time to time there are masters that rise amongst us capable of guiding us beyond such realms to experience that All is but One, and the dualities we perceive are merely two faces of the same medal. In martial arts no one has expressed this better than Morisei Ueshiba the founder of Aikido. Today, the practice of Aikido has helped hundreds of thousands of people from elite corps to ordinary folks travel a martial journey beyond duality. In Aikido there are no enemies and there is no competition. The key to understanding the realm beyond duality is compassion and thus a great master must learn how to confront every challenge without hate or anger, and without harming the adversary.
I have been attracted to martial arts from a young age, but always felt Aikido was beyond my reach until I met the Makoto family. Makoto is not only a martial arts school, it is a close knitted community of people who support and help each other in the spiritual and martial journey of Aikido. Sensei Bernie Ho is the master that has made this extraordinary reality possible. Notwithstanding his exceptional achievements, he has always maintained that striking humility that only great masters achieve. He knows when to impose discipline and when to let you pause. He can spur children to rise above their own expectations without ever loosing the enthusiasm of a student on an endless learning journey.
I highly recommend Makoto Aikido for anyone serious about discovering the spirit of martial arts, and for all children to learn how to mend power and kindness under the same roof.
My son and I have reaped great physical and spiritual benefits from being part of the Makoto family and I will always be very grateful to Sensei Bernie Ho.
Carmelo Pistorio, Chairman and CEO of XiD Technologies and 6th Kyu Aikido practitioner
Judo Federation Dojo
AIKIDO BRIEF TESTIMONIAL
Learning and practicing Aikido have been a teenage dream come true for me although I was unable to realize this dream for various personal reasons until two and a half years ago when I turned sixty. I am very grateful to fellow students at the Makoto Aikido Dojo and especially Sensei Bernie Ho (Head of Dojo) for helping me fulfil this dream and to grow in my interest in the martial art.
The systematic approach to learning Aikido under Sensei Bernie Ho and the flexibility of being able to progress at my own pace had made it easier for me to adapt to the seemingly vigorous training. Besides helping me to be more disciplined in keeping to a healthy lifestyle, Aikido has enhanced my sense of awareness of my surroundings and made me feel more alive. Aikido is certainly a martial art without age barrier.
Judo Federation Dojo
Keen to learn from cross-cultural domains, I met Sensei Bernie Ho, who invited me to join his Dojo, Makoto Aikido, in July 2011.
My intention was simply to want to 'try out' Aikido. With no background in martial arts or even active sports until then, I had little faith in myself and imagined the experience/exposure to last, at the most, for 6 months!
Today, I am 6 years into the practice and invite friends and fellow-travellers to join Makoto Aikido - a surprising inspiring community for me in Singapore.
Makoto Aikdio - This is where I learn the tenets and basics of the philosophy through casual conversations with multiple practitioners, whose motivation and depth in their personal practices, leave me in awe.
Makoto Aikido - This is where I learn the practical elements of Aikido martial arts from Sensei Bernie Ho, who has been welcoming, understanding, encouraging, appreciating my strengths and giving me critical feedback on my blind spots. His practice and resilience as the teacher, connector and community-builder in the Aikido world, is heart-felt.
Makoto Aikido - This is where I learn the discovery process of harmony with my fellow-practice-mates, as young as 5 years old and as old as 65 years old, leveraging on each other's practice and growing confident, individually and collectively. This is where indeed the Mission, Vision and Values are aligned and tangible at every event/class under the guidance of Sensei.
Thank you Makoto Aikido. A Bow to your essence.
Organisational Learning Facilitator, Executive Coach & Author
Judo Federation Dojo