Our Story

As a kid growing up in the 70’s and early 80’s, Derek Bindner was fascinated with Bruce Lee’s powerful and graceful martial arts moves, and his ability to protect, and express himself, sincerely. Intrigued, Derek would emulate these moves since the age of 10, and eventually start his first martial arts classes in karate and wrestling as a kid. Then moving on to Taekwondo, kickboxing, Ken-jitsu, Aikido, and Jiu-jitsu.

To test his physical, mental, and emotional skills, (and needing a job), Derek started working as a bouncer in 1989. Fast forward to 1997, while working as an executive and close protection professional, Derek was employed to lead a team of operatives in the Niagara region during a national labour dispute. Derek came to be known as the guy that could neutralize violence, as he worked efficiently, without incidence. Eventually, Derek’s fellow bodyguards came to him for extra private training, after work hours. In the same year, in a performance review, Derek was commended on restoring peace during many violent altercations in the field. During this review, he was questioned about his methods of de-escalating verbal and physical aggression, with such control. Derek explained to them that he trained in the martial arts of Aikido and Jiu-jitsu. It was the lessons from these two martial arts that gave him the mental, physical and emotional confidence, and skills to deal with undesirable people in high stress situations. After the performance review was conducted, Derek was invited to consider instructing all other operatives in defensive and control tactics. It was then that Derek was hired to instruct his fellow operatives in Aikido and Jiu-jitsu tactics.

On July 5, 1997, Derek started his own part time defensive tactics training academy, named Tactical Defense Solutions (TDS), and created Aiki-jitsu Tactics, for security and law enforcement, and Goshin-Ryu Jiu-jitsu for civilians.

Demand grew quickly for this type of training, so on December 12th, 1999, Derek decided to jump in with both feet, and started the planning for opening a full time, professional academy. This dream was realized on August 1st, 2000, at 205 Oxford Street, in London, Ontario. Group classes were offered to the general public in Goshin-Ryu Jiu-jitsu, Yoshinkan Aikido, kickboxing, self-protection, Yoga, and T’ai Chi.

Since then, the name TDS has included the names Aikido Network, and Reliance Jiu-jitsu Academy, and in 2018, the name was changed to Bindner Academy. The school has grown tremendously over two decades, offering local, national, and international seminars, courses, and presentations, including ongoing classes in Goshin-Ryu Fusion Jiu-jitsu, Brazilian Jiu-jitsu, and 8-week courses in Fusion Budo (warrior leadership coaching).

In February of 2017, after instructing a weekend of seminars to members of the Montreal Police Service, and teaching his Aiki-jitsu Tactics program for 20 years, Derek retired from teaching in the law enforcement community, to further focus on developing the Goshin-Ryu Fusion Jiu-jitsu program for civilians of all ages.

When Covid-19 hit in March 2020, Bindner Academy introduced online classes, and has a commitment to operating in a safe environment during, and after the crisis. While many martial art schools have stopped, or shut down, Bindner Academy continues to offer classes both online, and in-person while it is safe, and the opportunity presents itself.

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