Our Mission Statement, What is Kaishukan?
We chose the name Kaishukan because it reflects our desire to create a place where everybody can gather together in a common spirit to practice Aikido. Our dojo name means “A place where all can gather to train”.
Aikido has a strong sense of community and it is this that we are trying to achieve and embody.
Our dojo follows the “traditional Aikikai” style of Aikido as taught by Master Ueshiba, the founder, then disseminated via his family to whom we are affiliated (The Honbu Aikikai Foundation) through our parent organisation.
We observe the importance of traditional etiquette and self discipline. This style promotes gentle yet vigorous training emphasising skill over strength. Practice is done cooperatively without competition or fighting.
Our dojo is in Garston and currently a branch of Wagokan dojo in Manchester under Mr. David Yates (6th Dan, Honbu).
Our parent organisation is the British Aikido Federation (B.A.F.) which is accredited by the British Sports Council and thus all its instructors are fully qualified and insured sports coaches.
We also have very good relations with the other B.A.F. Shidoin notably Mr. Ian McClarence (7th Dan, Honbu) the chief instructor for England and my mentor, and also Chesters senior instructor Mr. Stephen Parr (6th Dan, Honbu) .
Our dojo has run a number of years in a different locations including Stockport, Chorlton, Crewe and Halewood with much success. Moving locations due to work finally brought me to east Liverpool where I have set up again.
We originally opened under the guidance and instruction of Mr. Allan Rowley (6th Dan, Honbu) who as our patron brought over 40 years of Aikido experience to our dojo.
Although he has now retired from Aikido our dojo still has a good relationship with him. and he still gives us some guidance.
As a dojo we hope to make into a project which helps serve the community and our doors are open for all those who wish to train regardless of their background and experience.
In trying to maintain the feel of a Japanese dojo we maintain a policy of formal etiquette during practice in order to enhance the aikido experience and maintain a safe environment.
Beyond this however we like to feel that we promote a friendly environment with an approachable instructor, please feel free to ask any questions.
We run the dojo on six principles depicted on the Kaishukan Flower: Exercise, Confidence, Relaxation, Friendship, Discipline, Defence.
Aikido can help improve Physical Fitness, develop co-ordination and lessen the rigours of ageing. It can be practised gently allowing for a gentle stretch or with a more aerobic vigour to stimulate the cardio- vascular system.
As a person improves and develops their Aikido they learn ways of dealing with situations and make decisions to help them cope. The training helps promote quick decisive thinking with the flexibility to adapt to new situations.
Medatative practices in Aikido allow the body to remain supple and the mind to remain calm. Many of the side practices and warm-ups are taken from yoga and tai chi allowing a person to become centred.
Aikido is an activity practiced with others allowing practitioners to form bond with each other. This also helps build trust. Practitioners are encouraged to look after their partners to prevent injury and the Aikido community tends to be close and welcoming to others. The founders original aim was to promote peace harmony and understanding between people.
An important aspect of life developing self discipline allows us to function efficiently and maintain concentration. It helps us overcome difficulties in a calm decisive manner. The formalities of Aikido help to focus and train the mind while laying out a very simple structure which can be followed.
The martial aspect of training teaches the methodology of how to remain safe, and how to be aware of your environment. Coupled with a series of practical applications to aid in subduing an opponent with the minimum amount of force effort and damage. The training leads to an improvement in the ability to assess a situation and environment, allowing a person to make safer decisions where possible and avoid conflicts.