In the early 1970's while at summer camp, Beth saw a martial arts demonstration performed by one of her counselors. And she was fascinated.
Growing up in a small college town in southwestern Virginia with a physical disability, there wasn't a clear oppurtunity to train. By1978, Beth had become stronger and her mother sent her to dance class. Across the hallway from the dance class was a dojo, and Beth decided to pursue that.
The dojo's teaching was an eclectic blend of Shotokan and Moo Duk Kwan under Sensei Ed Hampton, Since it was in a college town, Beth met many black belts from other styles and learned their katas and these were ultimately incorporated into the dojo's curriculum.
She received her Shodan in 1983 and her Nidan in 1985. She was able to study some Hsing I and Traditional Chinese Medicine during this period as her Sensei was exploring many paths of Budo.
Graduating from her Physical Therapy program (at the Medical College of Virginia), in 1987, her career path led her 500 miles away from her home dojo.
Once she arrived in Ann Arbor, Beth explored many martial arts schools but found none to feel like home.
She took several Tai Chi classes before finding her teacher, Master Wasentha Young, in 1988. She studied Yang Family Tai Chi , learning the empty hand, sword, staff, and saber forms, as well as Wild Goose Chi Kung under Master Young, and was awarded the title of Sifu in 1999.
After teaching for many years, circumstances required Beth to move on and she studied Yoga, Bagua and Piliates. And it was through a pilates lesson and the magic that is serendipity that Beth discovered JMAC
Upon meeting Suino Sensei, Beth knew she had found her new Budo home. Although she had never heard of Iaido, she signed up immediately.
Beth started Iaido in 2016, and upon getting her rokukyu in Iaido, started Karate in 2017.
Beth finds martial arts to be not only wonderful exercise and discipline, and the people of JMAC a family, but moving meditation, a path to self improvement, and the best way to quiet the monkey mind.