April 18, 2020

kokyu ho hands

Dear Two Cranes Community,

Greetings to you all from the Two Cranes Institute Board of Directors. In this letter, we want to provide a short overview of TCI’s continuity plan during the coronavirus pandemic - how we plan to provide safe and continuing training opportunities for adults, teens and young people; and the steps we are taking to sustain TCI financially and to keep our community connected spiritually over the next few months.

First, we have instituted a robust on-line training schedule including 22 youth, teen and adult classes per week, available to all dojo members with access to Zoom. The intent is both to remain connected and interactive as a group, and to take advantage of the opportunity to examine the core body skills, attitudes and principles on which our Aikido practice is built. Our hope is that when we reconvene for group practice, these new perspectives on our own movement and motivations will enrich our practice.

Our on-line only training schedule will continue until the Governor eases the current “stay home, stay safe” restrictions. We can imagine offering classes outside by mid-May, respecting social distancing parameters. Our aspiration is to return to safe dojo practice sometime in June if conditions permit. Just what will comprise “safe” group practice when we return to the dojo is something we are actively discussing right now. Will we train with masks? Without actual contact, or with modified contact? We are not sure. If you have thoughts about what safe practice should look like or how we can reinvent our practice in the COVID era, please share them with us and the rest of the TCI community.

In addition to reconfiguring our training experience, we also face the challenge of maintaining TCI’s financial health in the face of the dojo closure and the cancellation of the Doran seminar and other events. We are grateful to the many dojo members who have continued to pay monthly dues, and to others who have generously offered to donate funds for those who cannot cover their dues at this time. Nonetheless, TCI, like many small businesses and nonprofits, faces a revenue shortfall over the next few months. To address this, the Board has taken steps to reduce short term expenses and reschedule debt payments to the extent possible. We have also applied for a Small Business Administration loan from a program funded under recent COVID-relief legislation.

Going forward, one of our most important practices will be to support each other as a community, both spiritually and emotionally. In addition to encouraging TCI members to speak up and interact during on-line classes, we have also created the Two Cranes Aikido Private Discussion Group on Facebook so that you can share your experiences, reactions and feelings during this time of physical isolation. Any current TCA member may invite other TCA members already on Facebook to join this Discussion Group, so please let us know if you would like to join. In the near future, we also intend to provide new Aikido video content on our TCA Vimeo account. Drawn from our extensive library of seminars that have taken place at Two Cranes over the last 25 years, this footage will definitely inspire you!

As a community, our response to the COVID-19 pandemic includes our Aikido practice, although reconceived to fit the strictures of social distancing. Our training does not stop as we struggle with the impact of the coronavirus, even when the world morphs in ways we could not conceive just two months ago. Our Two Cranes dojo is a unique entity—a diverse group committed to studying body-mind- spirit practices in order to help each other feel safe, balanced and centered. We salute your flexibility and commitment to the principles and practice of Aikido during this difficult time. Our community will be that much stronger for having weathered this together.
 

Sincerely,

Two Cranes Institute Board of Directors
Susan Adams
Kimberly Richardson
Jessie Levin
Dan Murnan
Greg Mock
Sara Gerhart Snell

Kimberly Richardson