North Hennepin Community College Celebrates 15 Years of Aikido Instruction
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, it was uncertain whether North Hennepin Community College could continue its aikido program. Instruction of the Japanese martial art form had been halted for two years.
But thanks to aikido instructor Mark Larson, the program was relaunched. Now, the college is celebrating 15 years since the program’s inception. For some students, the program is literally family.
“We’ve had father-daughter, father-son, brothers, sisters. Even a couple that went on and started a life together,” recalled Larson. “I think the most important thing is the human relationships made through it.”
Aikido focuses on self defense. Larson says it can can appeal to anyone, no matter a person’s size or strength.
Larson said any student can take aikido as an official college course at North Hennepin.
“I hope we continue to get students in the classes,” he said, “that they can learn something from this class and integrate into their lives.”