Changing of the Guard

<strong>Changing of the Guard</strong>

Shintaido of America is excited to introduce our new National Technical Council, Chair, Robert Gaston.

With Robert’s extensive experience and passion for Shintaido, he brings a wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm to our team.

We want to give thanks and express our deep appreciation to Shin Aoki, who dedicated over 15 years to the role of NTC Chair. He will continue as an active member of the council.

Robert is a Senior Instructor and holds the rank of San Dan in Bojutsu and Yon Dan in Kenjutsu and has spent over 35 years teaching and practicing Shintaido. 

In addition to his technical expertise, Robert is also a dedicated and approachable educator. He is committed to creating a positive learning environment where students feel comfortable and enjoy participating in his keiko. 

We are confident that Robert will make a significant impact on our organization.  

Please join us in welcoming Robert to his new position. 

Message from Rob

I would like to begin by thanking Shin Aoki as outgoing NTC chair for the many years he has provided us with clear and gentle leadership. I would hope to fulfill my role as well as he has.

I realize that many of you may have some idea about what the Shintaido of America National Technical Council (NTC) is and what we do.  To quote the Shintaido of America bylaws.  “The role of the National Technical Council is to oversee the quality of Shintaido instruction in the United States. Specifically, they are charged with resolving technical questions, acting as a resource for local instructors, keeping track of the status of instructors on sabbatical, and disseminating information about Shintaido of America’s policy on maintaining instructional credentials. Our current members are listed on the Shintaido of America website at

I have three main areas where I would like to focus my time over the next two years during my term as chair:

1. Supporting instructors who are currently teaching or may want to start a class and may need help with curriculum design to advance their practice and teaching. We have funds to send emissaries from NTC to locations where they can help our instructors in this way. Please feel free to request support to advance your teaching, practice and development of your class.

2. Making technology available via the Shintaido of America website and YouTube Channel where people can see various Shintaido movements, keiko videos, lectures, etc. The information on the website documents curriculum and examination requirements for kata, kihon and kumite.

3.  Facilitate communication to empower Shintaido instructors to advance and grow their understanding of Shintaido of America’s mission to transmit the form and spirit of Shintaido in the United States.

So, whether you are a seasoned/active instructor, current NTC member, new practitioner or someone who has been away from Shintaido for a while, please feel free to reach out to me and the NTC to let us know what’s on your mind about Shintaido.


Robert Gaston

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