About the Dojo

We are members of the United States Aikido Federation with direct connection and recognition by the Aikikai World Headquarters, Hombu Dojo, in Tokyo, Japan.

Sand Drift Aikido was established by Dr. H.T. Walker in 1969. It is one of the oldest continuously operating dojos in the United States. Dr. Walker began his Aikido training in 1962 and received his Shodan rank from Brevard County Sheriff Commander George Wilson. He was instrumental in the development and growth of Aikido in the eastern United States and was a founding member of the United States Aikido Federation. Many of the Japanese Shihan came to teach at his dojo in Titusville, Florida, and he traveled to Japan to further his study of the art. Walker Sensei was a Certified Instructor for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. He was committed to giving this knowledge to officers throughout Brevard County. We are grateful for his dedication, his humor, and his tireless effort to bring the benefits of Aikido to his students.

Before his passing in 2003, Dr. Walker chose Randy Beck as the Sand Drift Aikido Chief Instructor. Beck Sensei started his training in 1979 and became a student of Walker Sensei when he moved to Florida in 1986. After Dr. Walker’s death and the closing of his building as a martial arts school, Mr. Beck kept the legacy alive by teaching in the park and finding training space to share at a karate school. After two years members of Sand Drift Aikido purchased and refurbished the property in central Brevard County that became our dojo. Beck Sensei received his 5th Dan promotion certified by the Aikikai World Headquarters in 2017. He continues the tradition of excellent instruction for the members of the dojo and the Art of Aikido.

Grady Lane Shihan joined the teaching staff at Sand Drift Aikido in 2023. He began training in the martial arts in 1972 with the study of Karate, where he earned his first black belt. He became interested in Aikido in 1975 after watching the Aikido class that followed his Karate class. He studied under the tutelage of Dr. Tom Walker Sensei and many instructors throughout the United States. His black belt promotions came from Yoshimitsu Yamada Shihan, head of the United States Aikido Federation until his passing in 2023. Lane Sensei currently holds the rank of Nanadan (7th degree black belt), and has been recognized as a Shihan (Master Instructor) by the United States Aikido Federation.

The teaching staff at Sand Drift Aikido includes Barry Richardson, Allen Newton, Gorman Miller, and Clay Lyles. They all have over twenty years of experience in the art.
Morihei Ueshiba. His training in martial arts disciplines and study of spiritual philosophy led to the development of the Art. He taught in many locations in Japan before establishing the Hombu Dojo in Tokyo in 1927 which became the Aikikai World Headquarters. The expansion of Aikido in Japan and its world-wide popularity can be attributed to his vision and passion in developing a martial art that is effective when dealing with violent attack and provides a way of growth and integration of the mind, body and spirit. He believed the practice of Aikido to be a way to enrich the human condition. Morihei Ueshiba was known as “O Sensei”, which translates as “Grand Teacher”. During his lifetime he was presented with the Medal of Honor by the Japanese government and the Order of the Sacred Treasure by the Emperor. He passed away in 1969. His unique martial art continues to be practiced by Aikidoka throughout the world.

    Join Sand Drift Aikido

    We make it easy for New Members with free classes and introductory discount packages. Our schedule includes Beginners Classes and a Low Impact Aikido Class. Please use the contact information on the website to reach Barry Richardson about any questions and to set a time to visit our dojo.