Sensei Greg Angus, chief instructor at Naka Ima Aikido

Aikido Instructors

Sensei Greg Angus is a roku (6th-degree black belt) and chief instructor at Naka Ima Aikikai. Greg has practised martial arts for over 30 years and is also a yondan (4th-degree black belt) in karate. At 13, he began his martial arts training in Karate, a discipline he pursued throughout his high school and university years. In 1986, upon completing his graduate degree in Fine Arts, Greg travelled to Japan to further his Karate martial art studies. Once there, Greg encountered Aikido and immediately began his practice at the Hombu Dojo in Tokyo. His Aikido training continued throughout his 10 years in Japan, primarily under the direction of Endo Shihan.

Greg is an active participant in the Aikido community of Toronto and Canada, and teaches at seminars in North America and Europe. As a deshi of Endo Shihan, Greg hosts an annual Aikido seminar that is conducted by his teacher in Toronto, with participants attending from all over North America. Off the mat, Greg works as an artist whose paintings have been exhibited both locally and internationally. To watch a video of Greg Angus as an Aikido instructor and artist, go to

Ramin Arvin, senior instructor at Naka Ima Aikido Sensei Ramin Arvin is a founding member and senior instructor at Naka Ima Aikikai. Currently a godan (5th-degree black belt), Ramin began his Aikido training in 1992 at the Aikido Shugyo Dojo in Toronto under the direction of Sensei Fran Turner. He proceeded to study intensively as an "uchi deshi" (live-in student) with Donovan Waite Sensei at the Aikido of Center City dojo in Philadelphia. Ramin has traveled with Waite Sensei to Aikido seminars in both North and South America.

Outside the dojo, Ramin is a full-time licensed electrician. In addition to Aikido, Ramin has also been actively practicing meditation for over 19 years.

Robert Bergman (4th dan) has studied several styles and approaches to Aikido under a few teachers including Henry Kono Sensei, Hiroaki Izumi Sensei, Takeshi Kimeda Sensei, and Ross Robertson Sensei.

Robert Bergman, instructor at Naka Ima Aikido Robert states his view: "The practice of Aikido is ultimately a path to enlightenment. The motions we perform and experience on the mat are a microcosm of the natural processes that are part of the fabric of existence. If the universe has a mind, it is a mind in a constant state of maintaining balances of energies in many forms - moving stars, planets, air masses, water currents - all energetically in motion but all in an active process of maintaining balance. The human mind, however, is meddling, forcing action against the outside world as if separate from it. Physical conflict between humans is a good example of this. It is in the arena of physical conflict that the initial incarnation of aikido practice takes place. How can we move, think, act, so that we can maintain balance and harmony with another person who wants to inflict harm on us? The Aikido way is extremely simple and extremely difficult at the same time, and every Aikido class is a sacred time when you can work toward attaining this inner and outer peace. Naka Ima dojo is the perfect place for this, under the experienced and inspiring direction of Greg Sensei and Ramin Sensei."

Jesse Brown, a yondan (4th degree black belt), Jesse Brown,` children`s Aikido instructor at Naka Ima Aikidois currently a strength coach and personal fitness trainer in Toronto. Jesse started practicing Aikido during his university studies in Montreal. Upon completing his degree, Jesse moved to Japan to teach English and to continue his Aikido practice where he became a devoted student of Shimamoto Katsuyuki Shihan. While in Japan, he also began practicing Iaido and Kung Fu to further his understanding of Budo and enhance his Aikido. Jesse returned to Canada in 2009, and recently completed his diploma in Strength Conditioning as a way to bridge the gap between traditional martial arts and modern sport science.

Dino Manca is a sandan (3rd degree black belt) and a senior Dino Manco, Aikido weapons instructor at Naka Ima Aikidostudent at Naka Ima Aikikai. Dino began his Aikido martial art practice over 15 years ago at the Aikido Shugyo Dojo in Toronto under the direction of Sensei Fran Turner and Sensei Gabe DiMarco, where he developed a keen interest for the practice of weapons (Iwama-style with boken, jo, and tanto). He has been with Naka Ima since its foundation, initially attracted by its focused and vigorous practice, and later complemented by a desire to refine and perfect the efficiency of his art through an enhanced understanding of centeredness, sensitivity, and compassion.

Outside the dojo, Dino is a scientist and senior manager in the pharmaceutical industry.

Ben Peacock began his Aikido practice in 1982 in the kids’ Ben Peacock, instructor at Naka Ima Aikidoclass at the Victoria Aikikai, under Dr. Ishiyama. In 1992, he moved to Tokyo to train at the Hombu Dojo, and stayed for 11 years. His main teacher at Hombu was Seki Shihan, for whom he took ukemi at the annual All-Japan Aikido Demonstration and other events (example link here). He also regularly trained under Doshu Moriteru Ueshiba and many of the other Shihan, and attained godan (5th-degee black belt) in 2016. After leaving Japan, Ben lived and practiced Aikido in the UK and Australia before returning to Canada, where his old Hombu friend Greg welcomed him to join Naka Ima.

In the Aikido world, Ben is probably best known for a random interview he gave on the street outside of Hombu Dojo in 2003 for a documentary on martial arts called the Empty Mind.