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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 1236 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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Frank Burlingham 6th Dan

Frank Burlingham – BAB Coaching Development Officer

6th Dan Aikikai Zen Ten / 5th Dan Hombu (United Kingdom Aikikai)

Frank Burlingham is the Principle of Aikikai Zen Ten and Chief Instructor of Broadland Aikido Club; he is a former Senior Instructor and governing board member within the Institute of Aikido.

Frank holds a Bachelor of Education (Hons) Degree and worked for over 27 years as a college lecturer teaching Carpentry & Joinery, Furniture making, Wood machining and Performing Arts Technical Theatre.

Frank took on the post of Coaching Development Officer in 2006.

Frank started his Aikido career in 1972 under Htun Han Sensei in Lowestoft Suffolk.

In the mid 1970s Frank moved to London where he met and studied under Chiba sensei and then after Chiba sensei left the U.K, studied under H Foster Sensei. In 1978 he moved to Toronto Canada and studied for many years under Osamu Obata Shihan at the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre (JCCC).

Upon Franks return to the UK in 1985 he re-established his connections with Foster sensei and also met and studied under W Smith Shihan at the same time he also met and studied under T Moss Sensei. In 1987 Frank became chief instructor of Broadland Aikido Club. In 1999 he brought together for the 1st time the heads of three associations (H Foster IOA, W Smith UKA & T Moss Yama Arashi) to teach in what was then known as the Big Three Course. This course evolved into the annual Lowestoft Course. In 2010 Frank brought together, H. Foster sensei, Osamu Obata Shihan (Canada) and Philip Lee Shihan (Singapore) for the first International Friendship Seminar at Broadland Aikido Club, to this day this seminar rotates around the UK, Canada and Singapore.

Frank was graded 1st & 2nd Dan by Yoshimitsu Yamada Shihan & Mitsunari Kanai Shihan. 3rd, 4th & 5th Dans by H Foster Sensei (IOA) & W Smith Shihan (UKA). After the passing of Foster sensei in 2012 he was promoted to 6th Dan by the senior members of the Institute of Aikido. In August of 2016 Frank founded a new association, Aikikai Zen Ten.

Frank has and still travels extensively around the world studying and teaching Aikido, the highlight of this for Frank was being given the honour of practising at the Hombu Dojo and Meiji Shrine in Tokyo, and taking part in a demonstration at the Budokan stadium in Tokyo.

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