At Griffith Aikido – what to expect on your first night

aikido-brisbane-first-nightFirst night is always a little scary! At Griffith Aikido Brisbane, we make everyone feel welcome and comfortable on their first night. We know what it’s like because we have all been there at some point.

You won’t know anyone on your first night, but the moment you appear in the doorway a friendly face will greet you. It’s hard to remember everyone’s names so you will be introduced to those who will help you through the first night and the first month.

You may be the only one not wearing a Gi (white training uniform) but that’s ok. Wear loose comfortable clothing. Shorts and shirt is fine. There is no need to rush out and buy a uniform. Be sure that you want to continue with Aikido first before spending your money.

When you enter the dojo, we ask you to leave your shoes at the door. Your ‘bare feet’ is the accepted footwear inside the dojo. You will see bowing from time to time. Don’t worry about that. We will teach you.

Before stepping onto the mat, please remove belts, buckles, jewellery, piercings, watch, etc. so that you won’t do yourself or anyone else an injury. Ensure all of your nails are reasonably short so that you don’t accidentally scratch anyone.

Bring water! Although we have ceiling fans at Nathan and floor fans at Everton hills, it can still get warm inside the dojo during summer, so we recommend that you stay hydrated. At any time you need a break you are welcome to rest. However, if you leave the dojo, please tell the instructor.

Safety is our highest priority. You are not obliged to do any exercise or technique if you don’t want to. You may sit out of any activity at any time.

That’s about all! So now that you know what to expect, please come along and join us. Arrive at 6.15pm to complete some paperwork. Start at Everton hills dojo at any time. The next Beginner’s Course starts at Nathan dojo on Tuesday 1st February 2011.

Aikido Brisbane – for class times at Nathan and Everton Hills dojos go to:

See you on the mat!

What is aikido?

Aikido is a Japanese martial art created by Master Morehei Ueshiba in the early twentieth century. It is based on combat arts that date back hundreds of years. Aikido literally means the way of harmony (of the human body, mind and spirit) with the Universal spirit.

The aim of Aikido is to find a peaceful, non-aggressive solution to conflict through harmony with an opponent’s energy. Therefore it is no surprise that there are no collision responses in Aikido. There are also no competitions or tournaments, thus making practice an enjoyable learning experience.

The physical aspects of Aikido can best be described as a defensive system of continuous, circular motions, combining many fluid, dance-like movements with subtle, stylized techniques.

The movements in Aikido are not designed to resist or block attacks. The idea is to blend with the movement of an attack, take control and redirect the opponent’s energy to a peaceful conclusion.

The conclusion is usually a joint lock and / or a throw. The difficult part is achieve is in a peaceful manner. That requires an enormous amount of sufficient self control so that no one is injured. Hence the need for total relaxation and swift, timely movement.

When practiced properly, successful outcomes are achieved through minimal action. Aikido is simply allowed to happen.

Because Aikido is based on principles of correct movement rather than on speed, strength or muscular power, it can be practiced by persons of all ages and physical abilities.

The video above is a demonstration given by Michael Williams Sensei, World Chief Instructor, Aikido Yuishinkai.

Note that most attacks come in a linear direction and the expectation of the attacker is usually an impact or collision. As you can see, Aikido movements are circular. The Aikido practitioner leads the attack in a circular direction, thus becoming the center of movement for both bodies.

It is by directing the intent of the attacker in this manner that we are ‘leading’ the person’s ‘Ki’ (energy or spirit). This requires a calm, relaxed mind and body and a great deal of self-control.

Until next time!

Aikido – resolve conflict without fighting

aikido-brisbane-non-fighting-mindWe have had quite a few people start and finish in our dojo in a short space of time because they were disappointed that they were not learning to fight.

It’s a real shame that people don’t stick around to see a fraction of what Aikido has to offer. With no kicks and punches, and no aggression, Aikido can be too hastily judged to be useless in a physical confrontation.

It is true that Aikido takes a long time to learn and takes a lot of practice before it is effective as self defense. However, Aikido is founded in a different philosophy. Although it is a martial art but it is certainly not a fighting art. It is known world wide as the art of peace. It seeks to restore peace where peace is absent!

Fighting is society’s default conflict resolution process. Most people know no other way. Our entire history is enshrined in war and violent conflict. It was preached to me by my Father and it is now reinforced to our children in action movies and video games.

So why shouldn’t a school yard argument or a difference in core beliefs, be resolved in exactly the same way?

Fighting offers very little possibility of peace when one has defeated and possibly injured, humiliated and shamed another. It serves only to fuel anger, bitterness and revenge.

If you fight, you spend your life looking over your shoulder for one of your victims bearing a grudge. It is true that revenge is a dish best served cold. It could be years before your past catches up with you; and you may never see it coming.

So what is different about Aikido? Regular training in Aikido develops a non-fighting mind. For a martial art that grew out of Japanese battlefield arts, that is something very special.

A non-fighting mind is one that feels no need to fight or to vanquish another. A non-fighting mind seeks to stop the violence and restore peace, not by meeting force with force. Aikido uses the energy of an opponent to redirect, control and stop the violence. In that way, no one needs to be hurt.

Come learn Aikido in Brisbane at Griffith Aikido and never be concerned about bullies again!

Come train with us and extend your network of Aikido friends. Class times information at

Pay at

See you on the mat!

Visitors welcome at Griffith Aikido

aikido-in-brisbane-visitors-welcomeIf you are visiting Brisbane, or looking for Aikido in Brisbane, please drop in and see us at Griffith Aikido Institute.

We follow the Yuishinkai style of Master Koretoshi Maruyama Sensei.

We have welcomed many interstate and overseas visitors, and you too are welcome to train with us throughout the duration of your stay. Whether you are in town for a day, a week or a year, we would love to see you.

You can contact us in advance if you wish but you are also most welcome to simply turn up without notice at any class. Simply sign our insurance indemnity form, pay a casual fee and start training.

Ours is a large club, a mature dojo with a full progression of coloured belts and black belts. We have two dojos, conveniently located on the north and south sides of Brisbane.

Our Nathan dojo has 190sqm of mat space while our Everton Hills dojo has at least 120sqm. Both dojos are equipped with dojo weapons for common use.

Come train with us and extend your network of Aikido friends. Class times information at

Aikido in Brisbane – being a beginner

aikido-brisbane-beginnersAt Griffith Aikido institute, we believe that Aikido is for everyone. It is universally known as ‘the art of peace’, so we want as many people as possible to at least experience it.

We know that Aikido is not for everyone but you’ll never know unless you try it. We also know that for many it is the world’s best kept ‘peace’ secret. We never tire of hearing how people are so grateful that they found this beautiful art.

You will see some Aikido and other martial arts dojos indicate that they are seeking to attract the ‘serious’ student. In other words, they are looking for students who have previous training in Aikido or another martial art. Beginners, whilst not necessarily turned away, are often ignored and subtly discouraged.

If you are accepted as a student at one these dojos, you will be expected to follow along as best you can. Their lessons are often aimed at the middle and senior grades and they don’t have the personnel to attend to the needs of beginners.

Every Aikido student in the world can describe the confusion that is felt in the first weeks or months of training. This is because Aikido is a subtle art that takes longer to learn.

At Griffith Aikido Institute, we make it easy for beginners by offering a specialist beginner’s course at our Nathan dojo. You will have your own dedicated (and very friendly) instructor who will show you the basics for the 1st month of your Aikido career.

We limit our intake to 8 beginner students each month. As a general rule, between 50%-70% of the students who start the beginner’s course, decide to continue and progress into the main class.

We have had many beginners who start with the intention of training at our Everton Hills dojo. They enroll in the Nathan dojo beginner’s course for the first month. At the completion of the course, they return to full time training at Everton Hills.

So if you are looking for Aikido in Brisbane come give us a try. You will be welcomed with a friendly smile as you walk through the door.

To enquire about starting at either Everton Hills or Nathan dojos, call the club number 0413 664 611

OR if you want to come to the next Nathan dojo BEGINNER’S COURSE

simply pay online at the ‘payments’ page

or at

and come to the Nathan dojo at 6.30pm on Tuesday evening 1st February 2011

See you on the mat!

Nathan classes resume as normal on Saturday 15th January

Hi everyone

Now that the flood waters have receded and the roads are largely open, classes will resume at Nathan dojo as normal on Saturday 15th January. Steve Mitchell will be teaching the aiki-nippers and aiki-kids classes. Ben Sensei will be teaching the adult class. The teens class will run concurrently with the adult class as usual.

See you on the mat


Aikido – the ideal martial art for females


Our favourite Jutta

Are you a female searching martial arts in Brisbane? There are not many martial arts where females can be just as capable as males. But Aikido is one of them!

Size and physical strength count for nothing in this subtle Japanese defensive art. It is all about balance, movement and timing – all borne out of a highly developed non-fighting mind set.

Male joints are the same as female joint so joint locks are just effective regardless of who is immobilizing who. Because we all stand on two legs with feet pointing to the front, our balance is generally strong in one direction and weak in another.

Aikido throws are about taking balance, not pushing or dragging. The same principles apply to the taking of balance whether it is male or female. When someone is thrown it really is a case of the bigger they are the harder they fall. Fortunately we learn to roll safely out of it.

In the early stages of Aikido training it is easy to distinguish who is the attacker (Uke) and who is the defender (Nage). But with regular practice comes a highly developed sense of awareness and anticipation.

With more advanced skills, it becomes harder to distinguish Uke from Nage because Nage is moving to defend even as the thought to attack is forming in Ukes’ mind, and well before it is translated into action.

So does it mean this strictly defensive art transforms into an aggressive attacking art over time? No! It just means that defence occurs earlier in the eyes of an observer. In most cases, it also means that there is less to do because the initiative has been seized earlier.

Gabby & Narelle

Gabby & Narelle

We have many females train with us at Griffith Aikido Institute and I am pleased to say that we have quite a number of female senior students at both or North side and South side dojos. We deliberately position ourselves as a female friendly Aikido club.

Our most senior ranked female is Jutta. She is a grandmum and a 4th level black belt. She is a truly delightful person and a great teacher, but I wouldn’t mess with her.

So if you are a female looking for a truly engaging and interesting martial art in Brisbane and one that provides effective self defence, come meet Jutta, Gabby, Eri, Sylvie, Michelle, Narelle and our many other girls.

If you wish to join Everton Hills dojo, either call the main club number on the masthead above or call Rod direct on 0406 598 478

If you wish to join Nathan dojo, either call the main club number on the masthead above or call Steve direct on 0432 269 534 or simply pay online at (Nathan only).

Beginners Welcome!


If you have always wanted to learn a martial art, then give AIKIDO a try. This is a Japanese martial art where size and strength doesn’t matter.

We believe that Aikido is for everyone. Aikido is the one martial art where females can be as good if not better than males. It is the martial art that older people can do

At our Nathan dojo we hold a special 1 month Beginners Course in most months of the year! For the duration of the month, you will have your own experienced instructor and your own mat to practice on. At the end of the month you will do your first (7th kyu grading) and then join the main class.

Don’t worry about being fit enough or good enough. Just wear comfortable clothing, remove jewellery etc. and bring a water bottle. We’ll do the rest.



Enroll by paying online at

Griffith Aikido Institute has two (2) handy locations at Nathan and Everton Hills. We are a big club with plenty of friendly instructors. We are open to everyone and encourage females and older people to learn Aikido.

Griffith Aikido – the home of Aikido in Brisbane

Griffith Aikido Institute is the home of Aikido in Brisbane. Our style of Aikido is Yuishinkai. If you are thinking about learning a martial art in Brisbane and you are not really into kicks, punches and pushups on your knuckles, then you might like to consider Aikido. Some call it the thinking person’s martial art.

Choosing your Aikido dojo


Our Saturday class at Griffith Aikido

In Aikido, as in all martial arts, there is a wide range of styles, teachers and dojo cultures. Getting a match that is right for you is an important decision and requires some research. So before you make a commitment, there are a few things you should keep in mind and one or two questions you should ask. They are:

Is it convenient for you?

It is important to select a dojo that is reasonably close to your home and offers a wide variety of training times. The statistics at our dojo, Griffith Aikido Institute, suggest that 80% of all students live within a 5km radius.

So if you are going to make a commitment to Aikido, you must give yourself every opportunity to train regularly. If you have to travel too far or if there is only a restricted number of classes a week, then the odds are stacked against you.

Does the dojo have many or few people?

The acid test of a successful dojo is the number of students and, in particular the number of senior students it has. In many cases, there is only one instructor but the more successful dojos that have been around for a while are characterized by many students and, in particular, many senior students and black belts.

A mature dojo will have a full progression of coloured belts, senior and black belt students. If this is not the case, then you should wonder why.

It could be that the dojo has recently opened, could be struggling to make rent, and the instructor has no resources and little back-up. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the instructor is not a good one, and on the positive side, you could be in for personal attention. However, without resources and back-up, the future of the dojo is uncertain. There are positives for both but you have to decide which suits you.

Find out the style of Aikido and the dojo culture?

There are several styles of Aikido which have evolved over time through the teachings of the original students of O Sensei. It is important to find a style that suits you. Aikido is for everyone, regardless of age, gender or ability, but individual styles may not be. Simply put, there are styles that practice in a harder and more physical way and styles that practice in a softer and gentler way. Find out which it is.

The culture within the dojo is also important to understand but you may need to try it out for a couple of lessons. Some dojos encourage only young fit males, and subtly discourage beginners, children, teens or females. Check out the age and gender mix of the students in a dojo as it will directly reflect the culture encouraged by the instructor.

Budo or Budo-bull?

Budo is usually translated as the martial way, and it refers to the warrior journey. The term relates to Japanese martial arts and to the personal journey of self development. It includes cultivation of the mind that extends way beyond the learning of martial techniques.

Aikido is a spiritual art which provides metaphors for life as well as effective self defence. Its expansive principles suggest a way of living a peaceful and self-satisfying life with self respect and respect for others.

Technique is important as a tool to teach martial awareness, balance, movement and timing. However, it is only part of the story. There is an entire internal side to the art which can occupy you for a lifetime.

Development of your power on the inside is just as important skill development on the outside. That power relates to peace, not fighting. Exploring life through the medium of Aikido represents the most interesting and challenging aspects of the art. So get a teacher with an expansive view of Aikido.

See you on the mat!


For Aikido in Brisbane, check out our class times at

Welcome to Griffith Aikido Brisbane


Eri in action at our recent black belt gradings

If you are looking for martial arts in Brisbane, you are in the right place.

Eri in action at our recent black belt gradings
We are a large vibrant club with a diverse membership and we train in a very friendly environment. If you are looking to learn a martial art skill, that doesn’t involve a punishing physical fitness regime, then Aikido training just might be for you.

Aikido can be traced back to the Samurai era in ancient feudal Japan. It is built on Eastern paradigms of internal power and mind development. So if you are interested in an art that relies on calm mind and relaxed body, rather than physical strength and speed, then come give us a try.



Location: We have two convenient Brisbane locations:

  • Brisbane North (Everton Hills)– Hills District Police Citizens Youth Club
  • Brisbane South (Nathan) – Sports Centre, Nathan Campus, Griffith University

Grab your free booklet ‘A Beginners Guide’ to find map locations.

Contact: Brisbane North: Call Rod on 0406 598 478

Brisbane South: Call Steve on 0432 269 534


martial-arts-brisbane-kamiza1Griffith Aikido is a registered Griffith University club but the majority of our membership is non-student. We have a long proud history of teaching Aikido to people from all walks of life for over 20 years.

Safety is our number one priority. We have many instructors and black belts in the club, which means that training is well supervised and there is always a skilled senior nearby to help you.

Our style of Aikido is ‘Yuishinkai’, which is not such a hard style of Aikido, but is still very energetic and acrobatic. Our membership is diverse because it appeals to females as well as males, and older people as well as children (from 5 years).

Aikido is a defensive martial art. There is no kicking or punching. The training relies on blending and harmony with an opponent and using their energy against them. Aikido is called ‘The Art of Peace’ but make no mistake Aikido is effective self defense and can be very dangerous if misused.

Grab your free ‘A Beginner’s Guide’ (on the right of your screen) and start.

At Nathan we offer a special beginner’s course which starts at 6.30pm on the first Tuesday of each month (Nathan only). Just call Steve on 0432 269 534.

If you wish to train at our Brisbane North (Everton Hills) dojo, just give Rod a call on 0406 598 478 and start anytime.

Contact: Brisbane North (Everton Hills): Call Rod on 0406 598 478

Brisbane South (Nathan): Call Steve on 0432 269 534