Aikido of Nebraska Featured in the Star City Sports #LNK

Aikido of Nebraska was featured in the October Edition of the Star City Sports, a local newspaper/magazine fearturing recreation and sporting activities in the Lincoln area.  The article is reprinted in its entirety below.

Lincoln’s Newest Martial Arts School,  Aikido of Nebraska Opens at 33rd & Pioneers

by Dennis Buckley, Star City Sports editor

When you’re an emergency-room doctor who wants to open a martial arts school, it’s probably wise to avoid aggressive martial-arts styles that are deemed more likely to send participants to your emergency room.

Sensei Roberts performing Koshinage (hip throw)
Sensei Roberts performing Koshinage (hip throw)

Sensei Todd Roberts now has the best of both worlds. The emergency-medicine specialist enjoys his work as a doctor in the BryanLGH Medical Center Emergency Department. After hours, he now owns and operates Aikido of Nebraska, a new martial arts school at 4209 S. 33rd St., just north of Braeda Fresh Express Café at South 33rd and Pioneers Blvd.  “I wanted to learn a form of martial arts since I was a kid,” said Roberts, “but with my line of work, I thought it might be wise to pursue a non-aggressive style,” he mused.  Roberts graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1988, from the University of Nebraska Medical Center in 1993, and from his residency at Penn State in 1996.

For the past 14 years, he and his wife worked in New Jersey.   The Roberts family chose the Garden State to train with instructors, R. Crane and K. Crane at Aikido Agatsu Dojos in Stratford, N.J.  A professional opportunity presented itself earlier this year and the Roberts family moved back to Lincoln. In addition to working in the BryanLGH Emergency Department, Roberts has teamed up with LifePointe, 7501 S. 27th St., to teach workshops on self-defense for women.

Roberts teaches adult Aikido classes, offering group classes and private lessons from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Especially popular with women and adults of all ages,  Aikido is considered to be a non-aggressive style. The basic principle of Aikido is “do not fight force with force.” It uses very few punches and kicks. Instead, the attacker’s force is redirected into throws, locks and restraining techniques. The techniques of Aikido are such that they can be applied to larger, stronger opponents with great effectiveness.

Aikido was founded by O’Sensei Morihei Ueshiba, who died in 1969 at the age of 86.  “I like the fact that Aikido is graceful, flowing, sophisticated art,” Roberts observed.  “O’Sensei believed that Aikido was not just a way to control violent encounters, but a path to one’s human potential,” Roberts added. “Regular training enhances your self-confidence, your discipline, and your interactions with others, and these are the true benefits of studying a martial way such as Aikido.”

For more information about Lincoln’s newest martial arts school, call (402) 261-6655.

Dojo Update 9/24/09 – Gettin’ the Word Out

The Gambatte Dojo at Aikido of Nebraska is now in its third week of classes.  Without any advertising, we managed to bring in some quality students for our first weeks of class.  All of us have had to do some figuring-out of expectations, but it has been a fun 3 weeks for all, and we are getting into the enjoyable routine of challenging and beneficial training.

The difficult task before us now is; how do we get the word out?  The students know we have a valuable service to the community, and that many would benefit from this type of training, whether you are looking for fitness, mind-body connection, self-defense, or just to get away from the rest of life for 2 hours.  When people see the benefits firsthand, they don’t have to be “sold”, they join.  So, how do we let people know there is a valuable service in their community that they would want to participate in?

Of course there is the standard types of advertising; direct marketing, print media, radio, TV, and the internet. The trouble with these avenues is people are so inundated with “commercials” that they tend to tune them out, beneficial or not. At Aikido of Nebraska, we want to rely on the best type of advertising; word-of-mouth. So, we leave it to you – get the word out!  Let your friends and family know about something they might be interested in.  Let your co-workers know – you might even develop a better relationship with them.  Help us get the word out.  It would be a crime to have a service that someone wanted/needed, and they never knew it was just around the corner.


Todd Roberts

I Paid my Money. Where’s my Martial Arts Instruction?

We as Americans often get caught up in the “Power of the Consumer”.  Americans collectively have tremendous power to shape the economy and the culture by what they buy.  Some however, take this one step further. Some insist that you have an obligation to them because they will buy/have bought your product or service.  Its the “I bought you, I own you” mentality.  Nowhere does this mentality clash more than Martial Arts schools. 

I have often considered the value of my Aikido training over the years, and the gratitude and obligation that I have to my instructors.  In traditional schools such as Aikido of Nebraska and others, the student must understand that what he is paying for has nothing to do with the Martial Arts Instruction.  How can that be, you say?  Like many things in the Martial Arts, it is steeped in the culture and tradition of the arts themselves.  Your Martial Arts Instructor has often sacrificed a great deal in order to provide you with quality Martial Arts Instruction.  Your Instructor has trained years to get to the level necessary to teach, has sweated, bled,  and suffered through injuries, often taking a toll on his/her family, job, friends, and finances because of his/her training. Have you suffered through injuries, finances, and years of arduous training to teach at your job?  Such a personal sacrifice is beyond value; hence the idea that you can’t “buy” instruction, it can only be given to those worthy enough to understand what they are recieving.

Now, it is simplistic to think that martial arts schools are “above” the concept of money.  It is not wrong even, for a school to make a profit, provided that they are providing a valuable service to the community.  Every school has expenses, including the time of the instructor.  But remind yourself that what the student is paying for, in terms of dues, has to do with providing an environment suitable  to training in the Martial Arts, not the instruction itself.  That aspect is beyond price.  I am still indebted to my instructors for sacrificing all that they did to give me the instruction I recieved.  It is far beyond what I could have paid them.  They gave me a piece of themselves. For that I am forever grateful.

Todd Roberts

Bryan LGH LifePointe Offering Self Defense Class


Bryan LGH LifePointe and Aikido of Nebraska are teaming up to help women improve their chances of defending themselves in violent situations.  Instructor and emergency physician at Bryan LGH Todd Roberts says he sees first hand the violence that happens against women.  He says learning some basic awareness and defense techniques could possibly save your life.  “I want them to gain some awareness of what happens around them in everyday situations so that they can recognize the danger points in any encounter.”
There are 2 demonstration classes that woman can attend, Free of charges, as well as a 6 week program.  The Demo classes are Wednesday September 9, from 7- 8:30 or Monday, September 21 from 7-8:30.  The Six week program will be held on Mondays beginning on October 5 from 7-8:30 PM

The cost is $90 for members, and $110 for Non Members.

To register you can call: 481-6300

LifePointe is located at 7501 South 27th.

You can also log onto:

Self-Defense for Women Demo

The demo for the self-defense for Women was held on Sept 21 at LifePointe.  There were 20+ in attendance and participants learned self-defense concepts and techniques capable of saving their life in dangerous situations. Although it was a difficult subject, there was humor throughout to make an enjoyable evening.