Rising Sun Aikido
Traditional Ueshiba style Aikido self defence club
Weston-Super-Mare, North Somerset, England
Aikido for Children aged 5 to 12 years
Aikido for Kids
Rising Stars' Sensei Helena ("H")
Many parents want their young children to learn techniques of self-protection so that they will be more self confident, self reliant and better able to deal with the ever present bullying at school.
However, their choice has been mainly restricted to martial arts, which no matter how noble their philosophy, in practice taught their son or daughter how to repeatedly punch or kick another child to achieve physical supremacy and ensure compliance.
The methods taught at Rising Stars Aikido are different. As well as teaching winning over self, Aikido encompasses practical techniques to preserve integrity and win over others cooperatively. That is why the techniques of Aikido are used as a metaphor for teaching the skills of mediation.
The general aim of the practice is to open children up to the humanitarian and engaging principles that underlie the practice of Aikido while developing their physical and emotional stability.
Please note, although martial arts involve teaching techniques of "self discipline" Aikido is not practised in a rigid way and children need a degree of self-control to be able to participate.
The classes are comprised of warm-up exercises, basic movements that form the building blocks of Aikido, more advanced techniques, and some more playful exercises meant to enrich the skills already beginning to develop.
The children train in a lively, healthy and relaxed atmosphere that they enjoy, yet the purpose and the skills are always serious and real. The students work with the instructor and with each other. A great deal of the class training is with partners and the children learn how to trust each other and how to help each other.
Benefits of Confident Kids Training
Aikido for Children aged 5 to 12 years
Children aged 5-7 years
Children in the 5-7 year old age group will be taught a mix of some technique and lots of movement games which are designed to make learning fun.
At this age kids have little patience for technical instruction so sessions are geared to assist the kids in learning while they feel as if they are playing. Later, as the kids get older they will move into the next age group sessions which have a bit more actual Aikido technique.
There is no grading for children of this age but to reward improvement a number of badges are given for various activities; breakfalls, belt tying, politeness, being respectful, etc.
Children aged 8-10 years
Children in the 8-10 year old age group will be taught a mix of technique and games designed to foster an understanding of Aikido's basic principles.
Aikido practice for this age group fosters discipline and mutual respect. Additionally, they begin to learn the basic techniques of Aikido and their Japanese names as well as learning to speak and count in Japanese.
Games, designed to teach various lessons about attitude and awareness in a fun context, serve as a reward when the students have stayed focused on the more routine aspects of training.
Beginners start with a white belt and have to obtain 3 red tabs before going for their yellow belt, this system continues through all the belts.
Children aged 10-12 years
As with Children in the 8-10 year age group, Children in the 10-12 year old age group will also be taught a mix of technique and games designed to foster an understanding of Aikido's basic principles, fostering discipline and mutual respect.
As the child progresses, the ranking system begins to include testing procedures to encourage them to organize their technical knowledge and to challenge them a bit more while still focusing on building confidence and self-esteem.
The non-competitive nature of Aikido teaches children how to work cooperatively
Aikido for Children aged 12+ years
Aikido for Teenagers
Kids in this age group are encouraged to move up into traditional Aikido classes which run concurrently with our adult classes.
The teenage years are often a difficult time for many young adults. Using the principles of Aikido, they will learn how to deal with conflicts without using violence and how to deal with many of the stresses of becoming an adult such as peer pressure, bullying etc.
Formal gradings are held several times a year. However, you should be aware that Sensei is assessing your childs ability at each lesson, and they will only be invited to grade if he believes that they are capable of passing.
We wholeheartedly encourage this!
Rising Stars FAQ's
When and Where do Rising Stars train?
Rising Stars train twice every Saturday morning. The 'A' session is between 9:30 and 10:30am and the 'B' session is between 10:30 and 11:30amThe Campus
How much does it cost to train?
The cost for a training session is £2.50 per session
What should I wear?
For your first few sessions it is advisable to wear jogging/tracksuit bottoms and a tee shirt. However, if you intend to train aikido regularly then a GI (white pyjama's) is best. These cost between £12 & £20 depending upon size.
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 £5 for under 16s to cover insurance and membership fees.
Can I stay & watch?
It's preferable for the first couple of sessions for you to stay and watch. Once you and your children are comfortable then of course you may stay and watch or if you want to pop out for an hour then please do so.
Can I join in with my children?
Yes of course, we actively encourage this, not only does it give you quality time with your children it will also get you moving and increase your own physical fitness.
OK, I'm Interested. How do I get in touch?
Why not just pop along to one of the lessons. Alternatively you can contact
Phil Benge (3rd Dan) on;
My children are having so much fun doing Aikido, do you teach adults or teenagers?
Yes we run adult classes in the evenings and Saturday morning.
Rising Stars Aikido Website
Why not visit the exciting new Rising Stars Aikido website at http://www.risingstarsaikido.org.uk