If you think you are too old to start something new, that you have to start young to become great, or that you may be the oldest one in class, then come to aikido and experience something different! We have practitioners of all ages, starting at all ages. Some begin with a friend or a partner, while others start alone. No matter what your prerequisites or objectives you have for your training, it is not too late to start – you will develop strength, agility, and endurance along the way.
For some adults, it may feel unfamiliar to do new exercises, learn to fall and get to know the body’s movement pattern in a new way. During the first classes, you may feel a little out of your comfort zone, but this will quickly pass if you keep training, and you will soon notice that you become more flexible and relaxed. Finding time for training alongside work and family can be a challenge for most. In aikido, you will find practitioners who train every day – and some who may get to the dojo only once a week. No matter what level you pursue, you will find like-minded people – and respect for the fact that everyone progresses differently.
Because of aikido’s focus on adapting and taking care of yourself and your partner, it is not uncommon to see older practitioners on the mat. Many of these have been practicing aikido for decades. Many practitioners are also drawn to aikido after doing other martial arts – some because they want a softer style and less focus on competition, others because they are interested in the philosophy or unique aesthetics of aikido. With a focus on injury prevention and health, you can practice aikido well into a mature age, and most exercises can be adapted to your level and physical condition. An interesting aspect of aikido is that the practitioners only become stronger and more skilled with age, because aikido is based on core musculature, technique, and mental strength.