What Parents and Professionals Are Saying




Date: January 2017

Denise Greenberg, M.Ed

Maui Autism Center - Director

Kihei, HI    808 879-4111

To Whomever It May Concern,

I would like to give R. Vicente Rubio my highest recommendation. He has been working at the Maui Autism Center since June 2014 and he has done as excellent job teaching children with autism many aikido skills. From moving and sliding, focusing and meditation, the children work their minds and their bodies. Vicente is also mentoring several students and has done a tremendous job in teaching proper posture and breathing, as well as, imparting higher self-esteem and better eating and hygiene habits.

What truly makes Vicente’s services so valuable is the energy he brings with him. The children will often not respond to other people’sinstruction but Vicente uses his positive energy to bring the students and the class to a higher level. He us truly gifted and I recommend him to anyone seeking to improve their child’s self-esteem, focus, concentration, anxiety, coordination, posture and general well-being.

Sincerely,  Denise Greenberg, M.Ed  Directo


Date: September 1st, 2015

To Who it May Concern:  

We are an organization the runs life skills programs and job skills programs for adults with developmental disabilities. Vicente Rubio is a brilliant asset to our program and has taught Aikido and Chi Gung to our participants here at La’a Kea Foundation for just over a year now. Vicente has approximately ten to twelve students twice a week here in our programs barn. His classes are of enormous value to us. Our participants are learning concentration skills, body mechanics and developing motor skills and coordination. Vicente is able to reach and engage all of our participants no matter what level of ability or attention span. 

Our participants who have taken these classes the longest are showing notable progress in concentration ability and many have taken to using some of the exercises outside of class for dealing with stress. Vicente demonstrates unbending commitment and consistency of routine with his classes here. In addition to providing this important service that enhances our programs for a greatly reduced rate, Vicente also volunteers to give private lessons to some of our participants in his own free time. 

I highly recommend Vicente as a skilled martial arts instructor, a devoted special needs mentor, and as an individual of the outstanding integrity. 

Service Supervisor: La’a Kea Foundation Danielle@laakea.org
(808) 579-8398  


R. Vicente Rubio has been a wonderful mentor to my son Zack, who has Asperger's syndrome. Vicente worked with Zack for 3 years and helped him learn how to think for himself. He helped Zack realize that life wasn't going to come to him, and ultimately he helped him transition into being an adult.

Vicente was an important role model for Zack and a key player in his transition from high school to college. He worked with Zack twice a week from the age of 18-21.Their work together started in the realms of martial arts training (aikido and sword training) which really helped Zack to get into his body and to let Vicente in. He presented a role model of a strong and compassionate male figure.

As a mother, I especially appreciated how Vicente worked with Zack when he was in college. He would visit Zack twice a week and help him with basic life skills (cleaning his room, shopping, hygiene, cooking, health). It really helped me not to hover over Zack and, in turn, gave Zack a real sense of independence. Vicente is a blend of strong/directive and caring/compassionate.

Zack values that Vicente helped him become a man, or as he put it "he helped me take charge of my own life". He was an anchor for Zack and I cannot imagine how Zack would have made it through college without him. I would highly recommend his services.

-- Eileen Fisher, Irvington, NY

To whom it may concern,
April 02nd 2012

Vicente Rubio worked with our 18-year-old son for several months – (November 2011-Feb 2012), working on cognitive behavioral challenges. He worked on a one to one basis helping our son through movement and positive reinforcements. Within a few weeks our son was showing signs of improvement with personal hygiene, direction and respect. Vicente was able to connect with our son and get him to be open about his feelings, worries and his future. He was able to put him on a path of personal responsibility and accountability. Vicente helped focus our son to reconsider going back to our local Jr. College, as well as, prepare and focus our son to find and obtain part time employment.

Both proved to be positive developments to get our son out his room and computer gaming, and into the ‘real world’.

Vicente is a kind hearted professional who is able to connect with young people to help them control their impulsive reactions, and teach them the techniques to allow them to handle some of life's many challenges.

-- Andrew and Carol Stoddard, Los Gatos, CA

 R. Vicente Rubio (formerly Ron Rubio), is a gifted educator, mentor & kindred spirit for young people with Asperger Syndrome. He's an author, Mind Body Techniques for Asperger's Syndrome – Way of the Pathfinder of a book & DVD, with an incredible ability to inspire individuals with multiple challenges to manifest their inner power through the selected, guided movements of non-violent martial arts. Watching Vicente work his magic with students is like witnessing the "Pied Piper of Focus" creating a safe, supported and successful journey of mindfulness and focus via a series of synchronized movements and imaginative visualization of positive self esteem. You won't believe what these individuals can achieve until you witness it!

-- Katie, Occupational Therapist, Education Support Services, Eugene, OR

March 2012
I was introduced to Vicente Rubio by Dr. Stephen Edelson of the Autism Research Institute. Steve came to know Vicente through his wife Valerie Paradiz . Vicente worked with Valerie's son Elijah Wapner at the ASPIE School in Boiceville, NY and had moved to San Diego where I have been involved in the autism community for several years. Prior to beginning my journey as the parent of a child who is significantly impacted by autism and epilepsy, I practiced social work with an emphasis on teaching and supporting parents experiencing unusual stressors.

Vicente specializes in connecting with teens and young adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their parents and coaching them through the difficulties inherent in these rocky years. Issues like hygiene, social interactions and expectations, dating, staying motivated with schoolwork, job seeking and skills, dealing with anxieties, anger and impulse control and even learning to drive have been among the topics Vicente addressed with clients and their families.

As I have gotten to know Vicente and spoken to him at length about the ways in which he mentors young men, his enthusiasm for this work and his genuine appreciation and respect for our kids has become more and more evident. Vicente uses his experience in the Martial Arts to work with both mind and body and to connect with young guys in a way they can relate. So when he made the decision to move to the west coast and spend time in San Diego I immediately offered to help introduce him to some families in our community.
I invited several families I knew who’s sons were teens and young adults with an Autism Spectrum Disorder and who were functioning fairly well, but still struggling to “fit in" or to cope with the pressures of growing up with ASD. That afternoon, I was privileged to observe Vicente engage and interact with 4 young men whose ages ranged from 14 to 20. They spoke about school performance, manners, communication, sports performance, personal habits and several other important topics openly and freely with Vicente, even though their parents were nearby. Vicente used movement and physical interactions with the young men to demonstrate key points and I heard a lot of laughter during the 90 minute session. The skill with which Vicente was able to move in and out of potentially threatening topics could only be described as masterful. He demonstrated a keen awareness of the physical, sensory and emotional comfort levels of the boys and was able to ask them to stretch just far enough to grow without creating unbearable tension.

Having observed this brief interaction, I can only imagine the good work he might accomplish in the context of a long term mentoring relationship. I would not hesitate to recommend Vicente to a parent who is seeking a mentor, teacher or sensei for a teen or young adult with an autism spectrum disorder.

-- Cherri A. Cary, PsyD, San Diego, CA (Ben’s Mom)

February 2012

Autism Research Institute
4182 Adams Avenue San Diego, California 92116
fax: 619-563-6840


To Whom It May Concern:

I am happy to write a letter of recommendation for Vicente Rubio. I have known Vicente for several years, and I have always been impressed with his motivation and sincerity. I have also had the opportunity to observe him work with several teenagers on the autism spectrum, and I was very impressed with his patience, communication style, and insight.

Vicente Rubio is a conscientious, perceptive, and exceptional person. I recommend him highly.

Please contact me if you have any questions.

-- Stephen M. Edelson, Ph.D. Director

I would like to recommend the services of R. Vicente Rubio, without qualification.

From a very early age, my son, Rees, exhibited signs of Asperger's Syndrome. As parents, we debated the utility of having him diagnosed and did not want him to self-identify as having AS. However, in about third grade, due to difficulties in school, we began to realize that we needed a formal diagnosis and thus came in contact with Mr. Rubios's wife, who is now deceased, who was a Ph.D. Psychologist, specializing in children with AS. Vicente mentored our son from approximately September '09 through July '10, when our son was 12 years old, with a few later sessions added when possible.

It struck me that it seemed that when Vicente first met Rees, he provided him with precisely what he needed at that exact moment in his life. I believe Vicente has a very deep understanding of both what children, and especially boys, need and what the "gaps" are in kids with "AS." My son at that point had a very high-pitched voice and could only bear to wear loose-fitting clothes such as sweatpants. His physical tone was very doughy and limp. He rarely made eye contact and generally gave the impression of being lost in space somewhere. I often felt he was semi-hidden in a cloud with his outlines only faintly visible; he was the opposite of "present." He could be very off-putting and was not often liked by other children.

After the end of the very first session, Vicente and Rees came downstairs from the studio and shook hands good-bye. I was shocked to see Rees sustaining eye contact in a very conscious way with Vicente, shaking his hand firmly and saying good-bye in a low and solid tone. He was all there at that moment.

I found out over time that Vicente had told Rees that he wanted to hear his true voice from the center of his being, not some squeak from the top of this throat (which is how he had been talking), and that he wanted Rees to look him in the eye when they spoke, and that he wanted to "feel him" when they shook hands. When I observed my son shaking his new mentor's hand, talking in a low and solid tone, and making purposeful eye contact, it was profoundly moving for me and looked like an immediate and measurable improvement in behavior.

Vicente insisted that Rees wear a jacket when it became cold – a seemingly little thing but really an insistence that Rees engage and "feel" the exterior world. He came right out and said that when you slouch around limply and wear sweatpants and a loose baggy t-shirt, you know what you look like? You look like you have Asperger's. Vicente was an honest and caring critic who tenderly conveyed to my son the beginning inklings of what it is to be a man, to know that you can actively be who you want to be, and the importance of nurturing the temple that is your body.

Through Vicente's mentoring process, Rees became extremely interested in nutrition, physical fitness and following the correct path of the warrior. He took everything Vicente said to him immediately to heart and his experience with Vicente continues to resonate with Rees to this day and will continue to do so throughout his life. Vicente made a deep and significant impact on my son that I believe allowed him to leave behind his babyish passivity and blaming of others, recognizably a part of Asperger'syndrome, and begin to forge a new active identity for himself as a young man.

I cannot say enough positive things about R. Vicente Rubio's mentoring practice. He is a gifted teacher and any child who has the good fortune to work with him will benefit from the experience.

-- E. Arielle Curtin, New Paltz, NY

My son began seeing Ron when he was 8 years old and struggling to find his way as the new kid in town. He who was too young to deal with his father’s death a year earlier, and we’d moved to the Shokan area from out of state. I’d heard good things about Ron’s aikido/mentoring program for boys and young men, and was impressed by the poised, self-confident teenagers I met there who were senior members of his classes.

Ron has given my son, who is now 14 years old, the strength – or rather, has enabled him to find his own strengths – to grow into a self-confident, centered young man able to deal with the meanness in the world without becoming mean himself. Ron teaches with patience, humor, great compassion, and most of all respect for the individual, which is so important and I think far too rare for young people. I believe that when we look back, outside of family members, Ron Rubio will stand out as the most important person in our lives. Thank you, Ron!

-- Carol Cadmus

Our 11 year old son has been enjoying his sessions with Ron Rubio immensely. He has learned many exercises and techniques; through them, he is embracing the philosophy of mindfulness, respect and service to others imparted by Ron. Not to mention that our boy thinks the things he does with Ron are so cool.

He has quickly become more reflective and poised. He is more confident: it shows in his demeanor. These changes have been noticed and praised by his educators, family and friends.

Ron's feedback has helped us as well, enabling us to be more effective and supportive parents.

Our son is very fond of Ron and truly looks up to him. He is eager for every session. So are we.

-- Parents of 'Benjamin' , Eugene, Oregon