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Instructors

JAFF RAJI
Jaff has been a fulltime Budo student and instructor for more than 20 years. He is ranked Godan in Aikido, Kuden in Iaido, and Shomokuroku in Jodo. He teaches seminars year round on an international schedule that includes more than 15 countries. He studied aikido with Tamura Nobuyoshi Sensei and traveled to many seminars as his assistant. Jaff studies Muso Shinden Ryu Iaido with M Tiki Shewan Sensei, and Shinto Muso Ryu Jodo with Pascal Krieger Sensei. In addition to leading Ecole de Budo RAJI, Jaff is an instructor of the European Federations of JODO and IAIDO. Previously he was National Technical Manager for the French Federation of Aikido and Budo (F.F.A.B).

TIM CARTMELL
Tim Cartmell is an Asian Full-Contact fighting champion, a Submission Grappling champion, a two time Pan American Brazilian Jiu Jitsu champion at the brown and black belt level and seven time winner of the Copa Pacifica de Jiu Jitsu. Tim received his black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu from Cleber Luciano in 2003.

MICHAEL SELIN
Michael Aaron Selin was born December 7th, 1966, in Gainesville, Florida. He is married and has a daughter and a son. Michael began training Judo in Taiwan under Tsai Sensei in 1989. He continued in this training and received Shodan with the USJI in Paramus, New Jersey, under Harry Glackin Sensei in 1997. During this same period, Michael also began training Aikido in 1991 under Lee Ching Nan Sensei in Taiwan, and received Shodan with the Taiwan Aikido Federation and the Aikikai in Japan in 1994. He found his true path when he met Jaff Raji near the end of December in 2000 and began his training with the Ecole De Budo. Michael received his advanced instructors license from Raji Sensei in 2008. He started training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in 2007, and received his blackbelt from Tim Cartmell in 2017.

RICK BORTNICK
Rick is a lifelong athlete who has studied martial arts for more than 25 years. He is a sandan in Aikido who has taught adults and children for the past 11 years and has a huge wealth of experience available to anyone who seeks it.

CHRIS LEBLANC
With a career in law enforcement, Chris has decades of real-life situational experience he brings to the mat. Currently Chris’ combatives class is invite only. Please connect if you’d like to learn more.

MATT WOOD
“The first 24 years have gone by quickly!” Matt Wood first got on the mat in March 1993, training at the “old” Seattle Aikikai under the instruction of Bruce Bookman Sensei from 1993-97. Soon training 40-50 hours a week, Matt achieved USAF Shodan in 1997 and traveled extensively to pursue a variety of teaching and teachers in Aikido, attending seminars in Colorado, Florida, Denmark, the UK and even Russia. From 1997-2001, Matt trained under Malory Graham Sensei first of Puget Sound Aikikai, subsequently the “new” Seattle Aikikai, under the aegis of Yoshimitsu Yamada Shihan. Along the way, Matt also trained in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, most often affiliated with the Machado schools of Los Angeles. Matt joined EBR in 2007 and was immediately immersed in RAJI Aikido as well as fitness and other classes. Matt joined EBR worldwide as shugyosha in 2010. Matt anchors morning classes at EBR, leading classes in Aikido, Aiki weapons and fitness. Matt has experience with firearms and bladed weapons as well and is an active participant in the combatives program. When he’s not in the dojo, Matt can most often be found skiing or fishing with his son Nick. “Jaff and Michael both introduced me to a new window on Aikido, one that keeps getting wider and brighter all the time. Focus on little details is key – it’s no good to just grind out repetition. It’s critically important to move “correctly” but it’s also vital to be conscious of the movement and variation. Aikido remains for me a source of immense joy and immense mystery. No matter how many reps you do or how many waza you perform, each one holds something new.”

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