The club meets every Monday and Wednesday evening at Portslade Sports Centre. Both lessons are open to anybody who wishes to learn Aikido and no prior martial arts experience is necessary. Beginners and experienced people of all styles and arts are welcome and students are free to learn at their own pace.
If you want to see details of our class, see the Class Times page.
To see the current club subscription fee's and their breakdown, see the Subscriptions page.
The club has two sensei's who teach regularly, Sensei Brian Mitchell (4th Dan Aikikai) and Sensei Mike Lawless (3rd Dan Aikikai). You can find a brief history of the club's instructors here. Our Members area provides info, news and articles aimed at, and by, our current members.
Beginners Q & A:
Can I bring a drink?
As a club, and within the National Aikido Federation, we encourage students to bring a drink with them to classes to combat dehydration. When training, its normal practice to leave your drink at the edge of the mats and should you feel the need to drink, it is considered polite to ask the Sensei's permission, although there would never be a time when anyone said no and sometimes the sensei is busy teaching other students.
What should I wear?
For your first few lessons, the only clothing you need is something loose, a T-Shirt and jogging bottoms for example. If you decide to continue your practice beyond that, it is advisable to purchase a 'gi'. If you need any help if choosing a gi, or with finding a place that sells them, then please ask the other members and they will point you in the right direction.
I do not know the dojo etiquette, what should I do?
As with most things in Aikido, you learn them as you go. Nobody will expect you to arrive at your first lesson knowing all the formats and quirks of dojo etiquette and nobody will mind if you get something wrong. The best way to learn is to just copy what everyone else is doing and over time the various elements will be explained and begin to make more sense to you.
I can only make one night a week, is that okay?
Everybody is free to progress at their own rate, in their own time. It is completely up to you on which nights and how often you wish to train. Most of us have commitments that prevent us from training as often as we would like. It is also important to remember that you are not in competition with anyone else and every lesson you can attend will allow you to build on the things you have already learnt.
What colour belts do you wear?
Within our style of Aikido there are only two coloured belts used. A white belt denotes students who are moving through the kyu grades, from 6th Kyu to 1st Kyu. Once you have reached Dan grade, you then begin moving up the grades from 1st Dan, then 2nd Dan etc. and you wear a black belt.
How often do you hold gradings?
The frequency and times of grading in our club are entirely driven by the individual students. If, and when, you have reached a sufficient level of competence to take a grade the sensei will suggest to you that you are ready to take a grade and arrange a date based on feedback from you. Nobody is forced into taking a grading if they are not ready.
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