For Beginners

Beginners are welcome! You can watch any of our classes or train in the general or basics classes – some people want to watch before giving it a go, and some people just want to dive right in. We’re happy for you to take it at your own pace. The first class you train in is free so you can simply come along and try things out. The adult’s classes may be attended by anyone 13 years and up, but if you’re younger then have a look at our kids classes.

We have two dojo’s (places of training) and our timetable has classes 7 days a week. For your first class we’d recommend:

Burnside dojo (address)

  • Monday: 6-7.30pm
  • Wednesday: 6-7.30pm
  • Friday: 6-7.30pm

Linwood dojo (address)

  • Tuesday: 6-7.30pm
  • Thursday: 6-7.30pm

What to wear and what to expect

Aikido is ‘easy’
– Andrew’s favourite saying in Basics class.

If you wish to train, wear loose clothing; for example, track suit or training pants and a sweatshirt. Please try to arrive 10 minutes before the scheduled class time and introduce yourself to the instructor (who is called “sensei” which simply means teacher). The class will then begin when all the students and instructor line up and bow.

The class will commence with light warm-ups gradually increasing in intensity to ensure that you are thoroughly prepared for training. The warm-ups themselves are excellent physical therapy.

After the warm-up you will probably be taught to breakfall. Be patient, as you’ll probably need several classes before you can breakfall properly.

This aikido business connects us to a large number of amazing people and the warm glow I felt amongst new and old friends is still lit within me.
– Miria Lange on travelling to Japan [October 2008].

Following this the instructor will demonstrate a technique. You will then bow to a partner and train with that partner practising the technique shown.

The class will finish with some light warm-downs and be completed when you bow out. Following the class everybody sweeps the mat and cleans up 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 (even the teacher) and remembers it. The other students and the instructor are all there to help you develop your aikido, and that is their job. Your job is to enjoy the training and have fun.

The next day you may feel some residual muscle stiffness. Again this is pretty normal and quickly disappears with regular training as your fitness improves.

Considering I initially came to Christchurch for 6 months, I’ve made a home here and Aikido has been a big part of that.
– Colin Grealy

After your first class

The first class is free, feel free at ask any questions you might have of the instructor. Then if you wish to continue you need to complete our membership form (available at the dojo) and pay the membership fees.

If you have any other concerns please feel free to contact us.

After a few months of aikido training I lost a whopping 10 kilos of fat and gained a few biceps and triceps.
– Magdalene Huang