Getting Started With Aikido
Whether you are an adult or a child, man or woman, mature or young, whether you are looking for fun, fitness or for self-defense, you are welcome to come along and watch any of our Aikido classes.
Better still, come along prepared to give Aikido a try. The first class you train in is free.
Everyone you see training on the mat, including the expert teacher, was once a beginner just like you. They remember their own first Aikido session.
They understand how you feel and they will do their best to make sure you enjoy your first session.
What to Wear and What to Expect
If you wish to train, wear loose clothing; for example, track suit or training pants and a sweatshirt. Once you decide to join, we recommend you purchase a Judo dogi and belt (white japanese training suit) from a martial arts shop or from Trade Me. Juniors can lease a dogi and belt (white japanese training suit) for $80 deposit. Note: This lease minus $2 per month will be refunded when the dogi is returned.
There are changing rooms, showers, and toilets for both gender. Please ensure you have clean feet and wear shoes right to the edge of the mat so that the mat stays clean.
Be ready before the scheduled class time and introduce yourself to the instructor or “Sensei” (which means teacher in Japanese).
The class starts with all the students and instructor lining up and bowing. Light warm-ups gradually increase in intensity to ensure that you are well prepared for training. The warm-ups are excellent physical exercise.
Usually, rolls and breakfall practices come next. Be patient. You’ll probably need several classes before you can roll properly.
Following this, the instructor demonstrates a technique. You then bow to a partner and practise the technique shown with them.
The class finishes with warm-downs and bowing out. Following the class everybody sweeps the mat and cleans the dojo.
Don’t be worried about feeling out of place, or that the movements feel strange or difficult – everyone was a beginner at some point and remembers it. The other students and the instructor are all here to help you develop your Aikido. Your job is to enjoy the training and have fun.
The next day you may feel some residual muscle stiffness which is pretty common and quickly disappears with regular training as your fitness improves.