Stratford Phoenix Aikido

What is aikido?

Aikido is a modern, non-competitive martial art, based on the traditional warrior skills of the Japanese Samurai. Aikido is non-aggressive, and does not rely on physical strength, but instead seeks to control and dissipate the energy of an attack. Aikido builds self-confidence, fitness and friendships.

A brief history

Aikido was developed by Morihei Ueshiba (referred to as “O-sensei”) in the late 1920s, as a synthesis of his lifelong training in classical Japanese martial arts, and his personal philosophy of universal peace and reconciliation. The goal of Ushiba's “way of harmony of spirit” was to allow practitioners to defend themselves very effectively while also protecting their attacker from injury. As with any system of training which passes from teacher to student, variations in style occur, and there are now various styles of aikido throughout the world. Our association, Yama Arashi UK has inherited - and continues to foster - a very flowing style of aikido which seeks to balance aikido's classical martial arts heritage with care and respect for those you train with.

Our instructor

Ric Costigan Sensei started Aikido in February 1977 when first introduced to Tom Moss Sensei (1944 - 2003) at the Coventry Phoenix dojo. He gained his 1st Dan black-belt in 1982, and slowly worked his way up to become one of the senior instructors at the Coventry club. In April 2002, Ric started the Stratford club - Stratford Phoenix Aikido - to give Yama Arashi UK a wider reach within the midlands. He was awarded his 5th Dan in October 2010 by Tony Thielemans Sensei in Brussels, and is qualified as a National Coach through the British Aikido Board (BAB).

Assisted by

  • Russell Coleridge, 3rd Dan
  • Paul Totterdell, 3rd Dan

Both BAB qualified assistant coaches who have trained under Ric Costigan Sensei for over 15 years.

Our classes

 COVID-19: After 18 months of disruption, we have now resumed normal, regular, full-contact training. Current classes are primarily focussed on basic techniques, and restoring fitness and flexibility. As such, now is a perfect opportunity for beginners to join us :-)
  • Classes are held in the main sports hall in Stratford Leisure Centre (head down the ramp from reception).
  • Every Monday and Wednesday evening from 7:30 to 9:30pm.
  • Age 18+ (no upper limit!).
  • Beginners are always welcome, and your first class is FREE of charge.
  • Not sure you are ready to join us for training just yet? Then do come along and watch a session - we are always very happy to answer questions.

Training venue

Main Sports Hall
Stratford Leisure Centre
CV37 6YY

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