Rising Sun Aikido
Traditional Ueshiba style Aikido self defence club
Weston-Super-Mare, North Somerset, England
Frequently Asked Questions
When and where do we train?
Visit our training and contact details page for the latest information.
How much does it cost to train?
Adult lessons cost £5.00 and last for 2 hours. Rising Star Junior Aikido lessons cost £2.50 and last about an hour. The only other cost to you is your time.
What other costs are there?
Prior to practising Aikido you must complete a membership form and hand it to the instructor. The form provides you with temporary insurance allowing you to practise Aikido for 4 lessons. If you intend to keep practising then you will need to pay an annual fee of £15 (£10 for unwaged, £5 for under 16s) to cover insurance and membership fees.
You may also decide to purchase a gi (white pyjama style thing). See below for more information.
Where can I get some of those white pyjamas?
You may also decide to purchase a gi (white pyjama style thing). This is not because you have to, but because it is the most comfortable thing to wear when training. It also has the benefit of being hardwearing and affords more protection.
Ask Sensei nicely and he will be able to make the appropriate arrangements. The cost is around £25 for adults and from £12 for juniors.
Once I join, how long until I get my black belt?
I think you mean, how long until I am proficient in Aikido? The answer is that it will take a while. Aikido is a very subtle art, we do not walk up and down a hall punching the air and shouting. This subtlety will take time to learn, how long depends entirely upon the student.
So, how often do you grade?
Formal gradings are held twice a year (April and October). However, you should be aware that Sensei is assessing your ability at each lesson, and you will only be invited to grade if he believes that you are capable of passing.
How many grades are there?
Aikido is graded using the Kyu (Rank) and Dan (Class) system. There are 6 Kyu's, 6th being Yellow and first being brown, after which you would go for a Dan grading (Shodan). Dan grades operate on a scale of 1 to 10 in Aikido.
Do you train with weapons?
Once you are familiar with the basic moves Adults do train with weapons (Jo, Bokken and Tanto). These help us identify our 'one point' and remind us of the roots of Aikido.
So where can I find an Aikido Club?
First choice would be to come along to Rising Sun Aikido (Either Monday Thursday or Friday evenings for Adults and Saturday morning for Juniors).
Do I need to be super fit to train in Aikido?
If you have concerns about your health then you should consult your doctor before engaging in any kind of exercise.
However, In Aikido we train in pairs and at the ability of the weakest member in any given pair. What this means is that anyone may come along and try Aikido and will be able to walk out in one piece at the end.
What age can I start Aikido?
Rising Sun Aikido run Aikido courses for children as young as 5 years of age.
Is Aikido suitable for Women?
Absolutely, at present nearly a third of our club are women and we have a female instructor (Helena).
Aikido is not about muscular strength but inner power, so Women and Men are able to train together without disadvantage.
Why not visit our Aikio for Women page.
Are there any books I could read about Aikido?
I can safely say that there are thousands of books on Aikido. However, If I was asked to recommend one it would be 'Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere' by A.Westbrook & O.Ratti ISBN 0-8048-3284-6. Available from all good book stores.
What should I wear to my first Aikido class?
Loose fitting comfortable clothing would be favourite, along with your most positive attitude. For safety reasons we ask that you wear no jewellery when training.
I think that I would like to try Aikido but I'm not sure, could I come and watch a lesson?
Of course, spectators are welcome at all of our classes.
We do ask that you behave in a respectful manner (do not talk over sensei when he is demonstrating) and do not walk on the training mat (tatami) if you are wearing shoes.