Sensei Julie “Jet” Tollen, moved to Tampa in 2013 to start the Tampa Aikido Youth Program. She taught Aikido in Philadelphia for several years prior, developing a unique, challenging and character-building curriculum for children ages 7-16+.
Jet Sensei holds a 3rd-degree black belt and has been training in Aikido for over 20 years. She started her training as a college student in New York. For nearly 5 years, while living in Colorado, she devoted herself with vigor to training under one of the nation’s most highly regarded Aikido instructors, Hiroshi Ikeda, a 7th-degree black belt. Jet Sensei spent another 5 years living in Kumamoto, Japan, where she furthered her study under instructor Munetsugu Sakabe, also a 7th-degree black belt.
Teaching Aikido to children is a passionate undertaking for Jet Sensei and she wants kids to thrive. She recognizes Aikido as a profound martial art that guides young people to making a world they really want to live in; one they can engage with in creative, flexible and courageous ways.
Ultimately, day by day, Aikido helps kids learn to connect more deeply with others, gain a wider perspective in life and approach encounters with centered confidence. With enough practice, they begin to empower themselves, and find their role as vision-driven, peaceful leaders of tomorrow. Jet Sensei is here to help them get there.