2018 Black Belt Training Sessions

2018 Black Belt Training Sessions

Aiki Budo Centre is conducting Black Belts Training Review Sessions on the following dates:

Date______________________________________Review Topic
Thursday, Feb 8 & Thursday, Feb 15 _______Shiho Nage & Ikkajo
Thursday, May 17 & Saturday, May 19______Irimi Nage (Shomen and Sokumen) & Nikajo
Thursday, Aug 30 & Saturday, Sept 1 _______Kotegaeshi & Sankajo
Thursday, Nov 8 & Satruday, Nov 10 _______Tenchi Nage, Hijishime & Yonkajo

Saturday sessions listed above are reserved for Black Belts only and will be held during the second hour of the adult classes (11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.) There will be no regular Kyu Belt instruction offered during the second class. The 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. sessions will continue as usual for all Aiki Budo Centre members.

Aikido Demo & Workshop at Inspire! Community Expo, July 22

The Aiki Budo Centre is proud to have been invited to perform a demo and workshop at the Inspire! Community Expo, a family event to encourage healthy living and community involvement, this Saturday, July 22!

The event will be running from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm with our session at 3:00 pm. Don’t worry, plenty of time to get there after Saturday morning weapons’s class.

If you or anyone you know would be interested in attending the Aikido session, yoga, salsa dancing workshops, watching some live music, learning about smart juicing and much more, please visit the events Facebook page for more details.

If you are available to help with the session in any way, please contact Sensei Knight who will be coordinating the session. Also available in person in class this Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

See links below for more details:

Weapons Syllabus and Videos

It’s no secret that I love weapons training, an so I’m very pleased that we are re-integrating weapons techniques to our testing protocols. Kyu tests from 7th kyu on now have a required weapons technique; details are contained in the Weapons Syllabus. (This can be found with the rest of the Testing Information).

While exposure to these techniques will increase during regular classes, attendance of weapons classes will likely be necessary to apply the fine polish you will desire for your test. The added benefit will be an improvement or your overall aikido ability through a better understanding of where our tachi waza (’empty hand’) techniques originate (the sword!), ma-ai (proper distance), kamae and timing.

And it’s fun!

To further support weapons training/testing, we are creating demonstration/instruction videos for all the test techniques. The first two are now posted (links below) and the remainder will appear over the coming weeks and months.

Wishing you all joy and success with your aikido training!

Sensei Kevin

Kote Giri Kote Osae (4th Kyu)

Tanto Tandoku – Kata dai Ichi and Ni (Nidan)

Oyo Kumitachi Ki Osae Do Giri (1st Kyu)


Aha moment in Aikido!

Aha moment in Aikido!

Written by Michelle Lynne Goodfellow

When I first started aikido two years ago, Sensei Jaimie told me that I could use the principles of aikido in the rest of my life off the mat, whenever I faced difficult circumstances. It’s taken me a long time to figure out how to do that, but a few weeks ago I had a huge aha! moment.

I was sitting watching an evening class, and a new student who had only been to a couple of classes approached me and asked me if aikido helped teach how to be calm.

Without missing a beat I looked him in the eye and said, “Yes!”

The trouble was, I didn’t quite know how to explain it to him so that he would understand, because English wasn’t his first language. In a flash, it came to me.

I pointed to my bald head, and told him I’d had cancer, and many other problems.

Then I pointed to the mat. Sensei Therese was teaching second control – nikajo – at that moment, and I pointed out the students who were applying the second control to the wrists of their attackers. (A video describing the entire technique is below.)

I took the young man’s hand in mine just like the people on the mat, and explained that when we first learn second control, we usually grip our training partner’s hand very tightly, thinking that it takes a lot of muscle to make them kneel. I made a grimace, and screwed up my face as if I were trying to do something very difficult, and gripped his hand as if my life depended on it.

Then I explained that the technique actually works better if our hands are relaxed. When we tense up, the attacker can feel it through our touch, and they tense up too, making it harder to move them. If our own hands are relaxed when we touch them, they don’t realize there’s a threat, and then when we can feel that their shoulder is locked, we can apply the pin with little effort, and control them.

I changed my grip on his hand.

“Gentle,” I said, and moved his hand. I repeated the illustration one more time. Screwed my face and body up, and held his hand in a death grip. Then loosened up, “gentle,” and moved him.

And that’s when I had my aha! moment. It was the answer that I’d been looking for for months.

Relax your “grip” when you’re under attack – from someone else, or a situation, or even your own thoughts. Relax, and act from the relaxed place.

Sounds so simple.

Our aikido training teaches us, through repetition, to respond a certain way to being attacked. And we repeat it over and over again until it becomes reflex, so that if we’re ever in a situation where we really need to defend ourselves, we act automatically.

When life is throwing all sorts of crap at you, ease up your mental grip. Go to your centre. Then act from that calmer place. Practice it even when life isn’t throwing crap at you, and it will become automatic.


A version of this article was first published on Fit is a Feminist Issue on May 24, 2016. Michelle Lynne Goodfellow is a writer and visual artist who works by day in nonprofit management. She started studying aikido in March 2014. You can find more of her work at michellelynnegoodfellow.com.