Tuesday 29 April 2014

Principles of Aikido explained in a short video

Don't fight it, break the balance, move the centre, use your partner's motion.... how may times have we heard (or said) this? The basic principles of Aikido. Easy to say, not always so easy to do. But well demonstrated here by Okamoto Yoko Sensei. Worth a watch!

Saturday 19 April 2014

Aikido in Bucks Cross, Monday 21st (as normal)

We don't let a little think like a Bank Holiday stop us. We'll be doing Aikido, as usual, this coming Monday at 7:30 in Bucks Cross, North Devon. So why not come and join us? Naturally we'll have our regular class on Thursday too. And if that isn't enough to keep you going, remember that Sensei Richard Small, who is our club's senior weapons instructor, also has his own weapons-oriented class in Bideford every Wednesday at 7:00. See his site for more information.

Saturday 12 April 2014

Street-fighting Aikido for self-defence!

Yes, yes, I know that Aikido is the art of peace and that we strive to find harmony and gentleness in our technique. But that is only part of the story. Aikido is also a practical method of self-defence. In fact, my favourite Aikido book, written in the early '60s by Koichi Tohei under the supervision of the Founder, Morihei Ueshiba, is called "Aikido, The Co-ordination of Mind and Body for Self-defense". In my view, you can only fully understand Aikido if you study both the mental and the physical aspects, the soft and the hard. I came across this video made by a Czech Aikido club this week, emphasising the self-defence aspect of Aikido. What do you think...?

Sunday 6 April 2014

Aikido Class Schedule, April 2014

There are a few changes to our schedule this month. There are no classes on Monday 7th April or on Thursday 17th April. There is, however, a special jo workshop (the third of three devoted to the 31 Count Kata) given by Sensei Small this Tuesday (8th of April). Apart from that, all our classes are as usual each Monday and Thursday. All classes start at 7:30.

Wednesday 2 April 2014

Our Three Aikido Instructors - get to know the Hartland Aikido Club!

We may be a tiny club in a remote area of North Devon, but even so the Hartland Aikido Club can offer students a much broader range of Aikido teaching than many big city-based clubs. How come? Well, it turns out that we have no less than three black-belt instructors who have been practising Aikido since the '70s and '80s. What's more, the instructors have experience of a very varied range of Aikido 'styles'. Huw Collingbourne has been taught principally in the 'Ki Aikido' style which incorporates numerous 'Ki exercises' to cultivate calmness under pressure (both in and out of the dojo). Pete Blayney has practised with many different clubs and teachers and he brings to the Hartland Club a vast knowledge of practical self-defence techniques and skills. Finally, Richard Small is an expert in weapons (jo and bokken) as taught by the 'Iwama' school of Aikido. For more information see the Instructors Page.

Whether you are new to Aikido or an old hand you may find that the unusually wide range of skills available from the three instructors at the Hartland Club will help you either to discover Aikido for the first time or else to broaden your existing skills.

Everyone who has an interest in Aikido is welcomed at the Hartland Club. Have no fear that you will be told that yours is the 'wrong' style of Aikido or that we won't practise with students from your organisation! On the contrary, it is our aim to work together and explore all aspects of this wonderful martial art. So if you are in the area, please come and join us!