Home About NJ Aikikai Curriculum Certification & Rank
Certification, Rank, & Curriculum

The N.J. Aiki-kai and Budokan is located at 522 North Avenue in Dunellen, N.J. 08812.  In the past, the budokan was affiliated with schools in Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan, and Guttenberg, N.J. and is presently associated with schools in San Diego California, Bethlehem Pennsylvania, and Pittsburgh Pennsylvania.  Mr. Conti, who holds the ranks of Jun Shihan Daidi, and Rokudan (sixth degree black belt) is the chief instructor at the Dunellen Dojo.  The N.J. Aiki-kai and Budokan also has several other Black Belt Instructors and several assistant instructors.

The Budokan offers instruction in Sho Ha Shorin ryu Karate, Daito-ryu Aiki-jujutsu, Aikido, Tenshin-ryu Iaido, Iaijutsu, and Kenjutsu. (the last three are samurai sword arts).  Also available is instruction in Kobujutsu which consists of the Okinawan weapons: nunchaku, bo, tonfa, ni tanbo, kama and sai.  In addition, instruction is available in Japanese weapons like: shuriken-jutsu (the art of throwing small bladed objects), jo, kubotan, boken, knife throwing, hanbo, manrikigusari, naginata, and other weapons.

Mr. Conti has been training for over 50 years and has attained black belt and teaching certification for all of these fine martial arts.  Therefore, promotions and certification for each of these arts are attainable at the N.J. Aiki-kai and Budokan.  Mr. Conti is also a N.J. certified science teacher with a master's degree in Education and Administration, a supervisor's certification, and a principal's certification.

The beginner at the N.J. Aiki-kai is taught basic self-defense, Karate, Aikido, and Aiki-jujutsu.  With time and effort you may attain rank in these arts.  Eventually, through the diversified martial arts program offered at the N.J. Aiki-kai and Budokan, a student may learn, test, and acquire promotion and rank in the other martial arts that have been listed above.

The grading system at the N.J. Aiki-kai is as follows:

  • White Belt - beginner (you are on probation)

Curriculum, dedication, attitude, and tests are prerequisites for promotions to each of the following ranks:

  • yellow belt
  • blue belt
  • green belt
  • purple belt
  • brown belt
  • levels of black belt.

The very high ranks (7,8,9) are sometimes given as honorary promotions for many years of devotion to the Sensei, dojo, and art.

Each rank, regardless if it is a colored belt or black belt, has its own curriculum (set of knowledge) that must be learned and tested.

The following list is a brief description of the martial arts offered at the N.J. Aiki-kai and Budokan:

Aiki-jujutsu is the mother art of Judo and Aikido.  Aiki-jujutsu translates, "techniques in harmony with nature".  This art includes; throwing techniques, pressure points, self defense techniques, joint-locking techniques, and bone breaking techniques.  There were hundreds of Ryu (styles) of Jujutsu.  Any group of fighting techniques could be and were put together to form a style of Jujutsu.  Any thing that worked in combat was Jujutsu. (street fighting - Japanese style)


Aikido is a relatively new art form that branched off from Daito-ryu Aiki-jujutsu between the 1920s and the 1930s, which translates, " A way of life in harmony with nature".  The art includes a philosophy of living a life in harmony with nature and the soft and wide circular techniques of Daito-ryu Aiki-jujutsu.

Karate is basically blocking, punching, kicking, sparring, and kata (prearranged sets of blocks, punches, and kicks).


Kobudo/Kobujutsu is the way and fighting techniques of the Okinawan weapons: nunchaku, bo staff, ni tanbo, tonfa, kama (sickles), sai (three pronged sword-like dagger).

Kenjutsu - Iaido - Iaijutsu are sword arts

The N.J. Aiki-kai is affiliated with Master Instructors and their Dojo (schools), which are strategically located throughout the continental United States.  They include Master John Hamilton and Master Vince Ward.  In addition to the regular instruction and training of these Martial Arts, special seminars, clinics, and classes are periodically offered by out-of-state visiting master instructors of each of the arts.  Other classes, clinics, and seminars are made available to all of the members of the dojo who might be interested in: philosophy, katsu (Japanese first aid), CPR, boxing, wrestling, Tai Chi Chuan, Kung Fu (Gung Fu), tournament/Kumite fighting, shiatsu, survival techniques, knife throwing, knife fighting, weight training, marksmanship (hand-gun), and more!

The N.J. Aiki-kai and Budokan also offers: a summer weekend training session (Asageiko) and a winter training session (Kangeiko).  The two-day Asageiko addresses ten weapons.  The Kangeiko addresses one full day of karate and one full day of Aiki (Aikido & Aiki-jujutsu).  The training sessions are held at the dojo.