Colin Max Roach

Trustee Emeritus, Aikido Mountain West, Mountain Wind Aikikai


Ranked 4th dan in both aikido and Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu iaido, Roach Sensei is one of the trustees and teachers for Aikido Mountain West. He is also the founder and head instructor of his own dojo-group: Mountain Wind Dojo. His study and exploration of Japanese arts, language, and culture was a natural result of many generations of familial connection to Japan.

Roach Sensei's passion for Japanese history, mythology, and sword-related religious iconology led him to write Japanese Swords: Cultural Icons of a Nation - The History, Metallurgy, and Iconography of the Samurai Sword (Tuttle, 2010). Beyond researching on Japanese topics, hiss primary academic focuses are in teaching, independent school leadership, and applying neuroscience in educational settings, and nonprofit consulting services.

Roach Sensei is a longtime and dedicated student of Frank Doran Shihan and Cyndy Hayashi Shihan, although his style has been influenced by many aikido teachers, both in the USA, as well as Japan. Similarly, although Roach has studied with many great iaido teachers, his two main influences in iaido are Esaka Seigan Sensei,10th Dan, and Ochiai Tadao Sensei, Hanshi 10th Dan. Roach Sensei was honored to serve Ochiai Sensei directly in helping him translate and demonstrate during his instruction at his last seminars in the U.S.A.

Contact Roach Sensei about hosting him for a seminar.

Despite his accomplishments in Martial Arts, Roach Sensei is first and foremost the proud husband to Alethea and father to Aidan, Porter, Charlie, and Henry. His family is his highest distinction. For updates check out theĀ Roach Family Blog.


  • 4th Dan Iaido, (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu)
  • 4th Dan Aikido Shidoin
  • Chief Instructor, Mountain Wind Aikikai
  • M.Ed. Educational Management and Innovation
  • Peabody Fellow of Independent School Leadership, Vanderbilt University


  • Japanese Swords: Cultural Icons of a Nation. A detailed study of the history, iconography, and metallurgy of the Japanese sword, Tuttle Publications 2010.
  • Pursuing the Martial Arts, article in the Deseret News
  • Katsujin Ken, The Sword of Compassion, an article in the Shudokan Budokai Journal
  • Why Do Wise Old Men Whittle Sticks?, Rokyo Times, the Sixth Teaching
  • Iaido and Self-Actualization, the Interconnectedness of Self and No-Self, Shudokan Budokai Journal
  • The Mountain Wind Aikikai and the art of Traditional Japanese Swordsmanship, article In the Shudokan Budokai Journal

Ochiai Tadao Sensei

  • Hanshi 10th Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu)

Iwasa Hidetoshi Sensei

  • Kyoshi 8th Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu)
  • Renshi 6th Dan kendo

Andrej Diamanstein Sensei

  • Kyoshi 7th Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu)

Nicklaus Suino Sensei

  • 6th Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu), granted by the Soke in the Eishin-Ryu Traditions Association
  • Renshi, 5th Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu)
  • Shihan, 7th Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu) Shudokan Budokai
  • Shihan, 6th Dan Judo (Kodokan) Shudokan Budokai
  • Fuku-Shihan 4th Dan jujutsu, Shudokan Budokai
  • Renshi, 4th Dan jujutsu
  • Shudokan Budokai, Iaido and Judo Division Director
  • Publications:
    • Art Of Japanese Swordsmanship
    • Practice Drills for Japanese Swordsmanship
    • Arts of Strength, Arts of Serenity
    • Budo Mind and Body: Training Secrets of the Japanese Martial Arts

Bob Ward Sensei

  • Kyoshi 6th Dan karatedo (Wado-Ryu)
  • Renshi, 5th Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu)
  • 4th Dan Kobudo (Shinto Muso-Ryu jodo)

Mike Cimino-Hurt Sensei

  • 4th Dan Karatedo, Wado-Ryu (awarded by Suzuki Tatsuo Sensei - Hanshi, 8th Dan)
  • Board of Directors Member, Wado International Karatedo Federation USA
  • 3rd Dan Iaido (Muso Jikiden Eishin-Ryu)

Iaido/Judo Teachers and Technical Advisors

Aikido Teachers and Technical Advisors

Frank Doran Sensei

  • 7th Dan Shihan, Aikido
  • Head Instructor of Aikido West Dojo for over 28 years
  • Chief Aikido Instructor, Stanford University
  • President, California Aikido Association, Aikikai/ Honbu Dojo affiliate

Cyndy Hayashi Sensei

  • 7th Dan Shihan, Aikido (Aikikai)
  • Dai Sempai of Aikido West in Redwood City, CA
  • California Aikido Association Administrator, 18 years
  • 3rd Dan Kyudo

Pat Hendricks Sensei

  • 6th Dan Aikido
  • California Aikido Association Division Head, Division 1
  • Dojo Cho, Aikido of San Leandro

Danielle Smith Sensei

  • 6th Dan Aikido
  • President, California Aikido Association
  • Dojo Cho, Aikido of Monterey

Michael Smith Sensei

  • 5th Dan Aikido
  • Dai Sempai, Aikido of Monterey

Michael Friedl Sensei

  • 7th Dan Shihan, Aikido
  • Chief Instructor, Aikido of Ashland
  • Publications:
    • Meditation in Motion, A Solo Aikido Practice
    • Ah... To Be a Kid, Three dozen Aikido Games