I started aikido in approx. 1978, when a friend took me to an adult education training night at, what was then Mirfield Modern school. I watched the group training and thought it looked very different from what I had expected of a martial art due to the apparent lack of ‘hard’ contact. The following week I joined in and found out that ‘hard’ contact was not only not needed but positively discouraged. This is what sparked my interest and I had caught the Aikido ‘bug’ little thinking that forty plus years later I would still be practicing.
Over the years I have attended numerous one and two day and week long courses with both visiting and home grown sensei. I have always found much to learn from these tutors but believe that you can learn something from lower grades as well as higher.
I was awarded 1st Dan in 1985, 2nd in 1986, 3rd in 1992, 4th in 1998, 5th in 2001 and finally 6th in 2008
I have developed my own style of aikido but would not like to say that mine is like any particular school as I try to incorporate any techniques of any style, including nods to other arts, that I find suits me. However, I do try to teach a variety of techniques as they may suit our students. Two quotes I tend to base my ideas on are;-
“You don’t have to win, but you must not lose” and
“Your attacker has only to be lucky once, you have to be lucky all the time”.
After forty years I am still training regularly and hope that someday I will get it right!