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A Place for Deeper Training... Traditional Martial Arts, Cultural Classes, Mind and Body Fitness

Shugyo Cultural Center History

Our Origins

In September 1999, Elizabeth Menning established Aikido of Northern Indiana as a sole proprietorship. Toyoda Shihan gave us the name "Onshinkan Dojo", which means "compassionate min" dojo.

Menning Sensei, established Shugyo Cultural Center in 2011. It is a non-profit organization modeled after Toyota Shihan's Japanese Culture Center. The original center moved just down the block to a much larger building. Classes and workshops were offered in several different martial, cultural, and mind-body-spirit arts. We even had a fitness area!

The space also contained living quarters for Menning Sensei. After several years, however, she decided to concentrate on Aikido and Iaido. The dojo was concentrated into a smaller location, again just around the block where we still are in 2019, twenty years after Aikido of Northern Indiana held its first six-week program at the Merrillville Parks Department.

Director of Shugyo Cultural Center

Sensei Menning Elisabeth Menning is ranked godan (5th-degree blackbelt). She has been training in Aikido since 1993. Many years were as a personal student of Fumio Toyoda Shihan, the late founder, president and chief instructor of Aikido Association of America (AAA) and Aikido Association International. First as uchideshi (traditional live-in student), then as professional instructor trainee, Ms. Menning lived, trained, and worked at AAA national headquarters, Tenshinkan Dojo, in Chicago, Illinois.

As a professional instructor, she taught at Tenshinkan Dojo as well as at her own dojo in Northern Indiana. While affilated with AAA, she was a member of the AAA national headquarters testing committee and held national instructor certification from AAA. When Andrew Sato Sensei and AAA parted ways at the end of 2004, Onshinkan Dojo became one of the three founding dojo's of his new organization, Aikido World Alliance (AWA). Menning Sensei and Onshinkan Dojo hosted the first national AWA seminar, Kangeiko, in February 2005. Onshinkan Dojo was an independent dojo from May 2006 to September 2008; at that time we joined a new organization, Sosei Aikido Kyokai, formed by Bob Garza Sensei, also a former student of Toyoda Shihan.

Contact Info

Phone: (219) 736-7854

Email: info@shugyoculturalcenter.org

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9117 Indiana Place, Merrillville, IN 46410

©2011-2019 ShugyoCulturalCenter.org

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