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British Aikido Board

The National Governing Body for Aikido in the United Kingdom.
Aikido is a martial art founded by Morihei Ueshiba, that focuses on harmonising with your opponent, it can be practiced as a sport, self defence and an art using hand to hand and japanese weapons.

Welcome to the British Aikido Board

The British Aikido Board seeks to:-

  • Represent the majority of bona fide organisations practicing aikido in the United Kingdom.
  • Support, encourage and promote the highest standards of aikido within an environment of mutual respect for offering styles practiced.
  • Raise awareness of the value of aikido not only as a contributor towards healthy living, but also in the development of adults, young people and children, without regard to race, gender or creed.

The British Aikido Board operates primarily through its member Associations. There are 42 currently Full Member Associations with 5 Associate and Probationary Member Associations of regional and national status, who each retain their independence, both technically and financially, with a combined membership of some 5,000 , which includes 1233 instructors holding current Coaching Awards.

The Board is recognised by Sport England , as the only governing body for aikido in the United Kingdom and is a member of the Sport and Recreation Alliance.


The Board seeks to further the advancement of all styles of aikido and to establish and monitor standards of safety and behaviour for practitioners of aikido.

The Board advises member Associations on all relevant UK and European legislation and procedures and develops appropriate policies and codes of practice.

Other services provided include:-
•  Insurance cover, for members, instructors and Associations.
•  Promotion of a Nationally recognised Coaching Scheme in conjunction with UK Coaching / Sport England.
•  Organising a National Courses.
•  Supporting initiatives to encourage the teaching of Aikido in schools.
•  Publishing Newsletters and specialist information bulletins eg. Safeguarding and Coaching.

The Board has completed a number of initiatives, arising from the work of their major Governance Audit and through the adoption of a wide range of recommendations, contained in their Aikido Development Plan will support their key objective of encouraging all Aikido groups to join together under this “Aikido umbrella”.

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Coronavirus Update for Aikidoka 8th July 2020

To: All BAB Members

Cov-id 19

I know members will be frustrated that, whilst many other sports are resuming training there is no such opportunity for Aikidoka. Also we see different standards required in other parts of the world with Holland allowing full contact and Japan also allowing full contact but with participants wearing masks.
The Executive Committee continue to monitor the situation and meeting last Saturday, via Zoom, agreed a 3 stage strategy to ensure that we are able to respond as soon as the Government give appropriate Guidance.

Stage 1 –
• Continue to monitor, on a daily basis, Government, Public Health England and Sport & Recreation Alliance Guidelines and those being developed by other contact sports.
• Prepare documentation, including Guidelines to support the resumption of training.

Stage 2 –
• Resumption of BAB Membership Registrations (including Insurance) plus Venue Insurance.
It is recognised that when membership was suspended in March, there were a number of Associations and individual members, whose membership was not due for renewal until a later date and so full credit will be given for the unexpired period.
• Guidelines on how to resume training.
• Documentation to be completed to show compliance with Government requirements including-
o Risk Assessment
o Opt-In- recognising the risk of training in relation to Cov-id 19
o Club Declaration Form- to confirm the clubs compliance with all Government and BAB Guidelines

Stage 3
• Being prepared to suspend activities in the event of advice from the Government due to resurgence of the virus. This may be on a National or Regional level.


• Monitoring:
Each Club will be required to appoint their own “Cov-id 19” Officer to monitor the Club to ensure that Guidelines are adhered to.
• Purchase supplies of
o Hand Sanitiser Dispensers
o Anti- Bacterial Sprays & Wipes for Cleaning mats
o Disposable Face masks ( whilst not currently advocated for practice some members may wish to use them and, generally, spectators should be issued with them)
o Consider using an infra-red thermometer to check aikidoka before they are allowed to practice

• Training Programme

At the present time Aikidoka can only train in groups of up to 6 people, outside, subject to the maintenance of safe distancing,(remember there is currently no BAB insurance). However, there is increasing pressure on the Government to allow the re-opening of gyms and sports venues and we hope this will be the catalyst for allowing the resumption of indoor sporting activities, in general, subject to safe distancing. Whilst this is not ideal, for contact sports, as hand techniques would not be possible, it could enable our clubs to consider re-opening, focusing for example on – exercises, ukemi, tenkan, jo and bokken kata and shadow training. Something Club Instructors could be thinking about.

• Venues:
Of course the types of venue used for training vary greatly and many will impose their own requirements, some may not feel able to re-open, and some, such as schools, may not be enthusiastic about third parties using their facilities. However whilst training should only be resumed when the club feels it is safe to do so, some commercial venues will wish to recommence their lettings as soon as possible, and failure to resume a “slot” may mean that the Club could lose it.
Whilst those with the luxury of having their own dedicated dojo, do not face these issues, they will need to give attention to ensuring that their premises are compliant with all health and hygiene and safe distancing issues, including signage and of course undertake an extended risk assessment.


Can I also draw your attention to the Sport England Emergency Fund, for Clubs who might be facing financial hardship. Details have been previously circulated and can be found on the website.
As soon as we are able to move forward we will provide information on the Website, Facebook, Twitter and Aikido Times, and where we have e mail addresses direct to the Associations, Clubs and individual members- so keep watching and let’s hope it will not be long before we have some better news.
Stay safe

Keith Holland
(Chairman. British Aikido Board)

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