When should I arrive?

For your first visit, it’s best to allow lots of time to arrive and get situated, as well as deal with paperwork, and discuss with Sensei any questions, comments, concerns, injuries, and previous training you have. We recommend 15 to 20 min before the beginning of class.

If it’s not your first visit, you should aim to arrive at least 10 min before class start time to give yourself the opportunity to get dressed and either do some warming up, or mentally preparing to be in class.

If you find it unavoidable that you will be late, however, we’d rather have you late than not at all! Just enter quietly and get dressed, then wait at the back corner of the mat for Sensei to invite you into training.

Paperwork?

Yes, there are two waivers to fill out (one includes emergency contact information), and you will also need to show proof of Covid vaccination to participate. This is only required on your first visit (or first visit of a given calendar year).

What should I wear?

For visiting the dojo and taking the introductory class, you are encouraged to wear pretty much any clothing comfortable and suitable for exercise. You may prefer long pants over shorts to prevent friction on your knees from the canvas mat.

Please also make sure not to wear anything that will snag on the mat. Generally speaking, you should remove all jewelry before starting class. If you have a wedding ring you prefer not to remove, this is okay. If you have other jewelry or piercings that cannot be removed, these should usually have tape placed over them, both for your own safety and that of your partner.

Students who attend regularly will be wearing white gi uniforms, and many will be wearing navy blue or black hakama pants.

What if I already have a gi? Can I wear that to class?

If you have a gi that is white and generally blank (free from patches or insignia), you can also wear this. We have dressing rooms in the back, so you should bring your gi with you and change at the dojo (rather than wearing the gi in).

What about etiquette? Like bowing or shoes?

Please remove your shoes when you enter the dojo; they will stay near the doorway.

Generally we bow when we enter and leave the dojo, when getting on and off the mat, and to any partner at the start and end of practicing with them. Don’t worry if you miss something or forget, as you can always ask, or someone can remind you. We understand that everyone is learning and that especially for newcomers, there is a lot of new stuff in your brain at once, so these reminders are simply meant to help you.

If I have an injury, can I still train?

Of course you should always make decisions like this with the full consultation of your doctor. If they approve, it’s often not too difficult to make modifications to how you participate, depending a great deal on the injury itself. Many of our long term members are managing ongoing injury and healing. If you see duct tape on someone’s gi, they are using that to mark an area where partners should proceed with caution during class.

I’ve participated in martial arts before, should I still take the intro class or just join the regular ones?

If you have practiced Aikido and achieved some level of proficiency, it may make sense for you to join the regular classes. Please contact Sensei to discuss.

If you have dabbled in Aikido, or have proficiency in a different martial art, it is still highly encouraged that you attend the introductory class. Your previous practice will deepen and enrich your Aikido, but it will have focused on different things, and you will still benefit greatly from an intro to how Aikido is different, and how our dojo operates.

What if I just want to come watch a class and not participate for my first visit?

That’s fine! Please arrive a bit early if possible to let Sensei know. There is seating available on the back wall.

Cleaning time

After each class, we clean the dojo as a group. Please allow time for cleaning and changing after class ends.

I have more questions this page has not answered!

In that case, please get in touch! We are happy to address your questions and hope to see you soon.