Why practice Aikido?

Aikido is a way of personal development through a traditional Japanese martial art. Aikido is often translated as the Art of Peace, and described as the Meditation in Motion. The purpose of this art is to bring balance to one's mind and body, and by extension to promote peace and harmony in the world. Studying Aikido teaches one how to resolve conflicts in a peaceful manner by harmonising with an attacker's force to neutralise it. This art is so vast and deep that one can continue studying it for many years, always discovering something new! Since Aikido is based on working with universal energy (KI) rather than relying on muscle strength, individuals of any fitness level can practice.

``The Path is exceedingly vast. From ancient times to the present, even the greatest sages were unable to perceive and comprehend the entire truth; the explanations and teachings of masters and saints only express part of the whole. It is not possible for anyone to speak of such things in their entirety – just head for the light and heat, learn from the gods, and through the virtue of devoted practice become one with the divine. Seek enlightenment along the edge.'' – Morihei Ueshiba

dojo announcements

Intro to Aikido - six classes

September 2024

If you are curious about what Aikido has to offer, this is your chance!

Vancouver West Aikikai will be offering a special six-session introductory Aikido course for teens and adults in the fall of 2024. More details to follow.

How to start practicing Aikido with us

July 13, 2024

Are you curious to try Aikido? You can book your first class with us (please email us to make arrangements). No prior martial arts experience is necessary. Before joining the dojo, you are asked to read and agree to abide by the dojo's Code of Conduct , as well as to  complete and sign a membership form and waiver .

We hold our classes at two locations: St. Philips Gym, 3737 W 27th Ave on Mondays (6:45-8 pm) and Saturdays (10:15 am - 11:45pm), and St. Mary's Kerrisdale Gym, 2490 W 37th Ave on Wednesdays (6:45 - 8 pm). Please see the schedule below for more details.

SFU Aikikai logo

VWA-affiliated SFU Aikikai dojo at SFU Burnaby

September 2024

SFU Aikikai (a VWA-affiliated dojo, with Valentine Kabanets Sensei as the head instructor) will resume its Aikido classes (Tue & Thu, 6-8 pm), starting September 2024. The emphasis of these classes is on the Aikido basics. Beginners are especially welcome! You do not need to be an SFU student to attend Aikido classes at SFU Aikikai.

More information to follow.

Upcoming Aikido Seminars

date instructor title place
October 25-27, 2024 Osawa Hayato Shihan CAF fall seminar Kelowna

VWA @ Dunbar (St. Philip's)

3737 West 27th Avenue, Vancouver

VWA @ Kerrisdale (St. Mary's)

2490 West 37th Avenue, Vancouver

SFU Aikikai [VWA-affiliated dojo]

Lorne Davies Complex (Central Gym), Simon Fraser University, Burnaby

Vancouver West Aikikai, c/o E.M. McKinlay, 3927 West 29th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V6S 1V2

class schedule

day time* location
Mon 18:45–20:00 Dunbar
Wed 18:45–20:00 Kerrisdale
Fri 18:15–19:45 Dunbar
Sat 10:15–11:45 Dunbar

*NOTE: Please arrive at the dojo at least 15 minutes before the class start time (shown above) to help with setup! On Mondays, there is an open mats practice right after class (ato geiko), 21:00-21:15.

Class instructors: Classes at the VWA main dojo (Dunbar and Kerrisdale) are taught by our instructional team consisting of Chief Instructor Ishiyama Sensei, Deputy Chief Instructor Valentine Kabanets Sensei, and the senior blackbelt members. Friday classes are specifically for beginners or anyone who wants to work on Aikido basics; to be taught by Phil Kirwin Sensei.

See this VWA notice regarding our COVID policy.


program @ VWA period amount
gainfully employed adults
(students, unemployed, retired)
monthly $100 ($60)
  4 months $360 ($200)
drop in one class $20

For the program at SFU Aikikai, please register directly with SFU Recreation. The drop-in fee for SFU Aikikai students that come to the main VWA dojo is $10 per class.

Basic policies

Beginners and visitors are welcome. Beginners will be paired up with more experienced dojo members during class. Drop-in visitors will be required to sign a waiver at the dojo before practising. Please observe proper etiquette and adhere to the dojo Code of Conduct .

All dojo members are required to pay Canadian Aikido Federation and BC Aikido Federation annual dues.

New dojo members

Our dojo is open for new members to join. New members must complete and sign a membership form and waiver . This may be done on arrival at the dojo, or you may save time by completing the form online and either printing it or emailing it to us.

Exceptions to these policies will be considered on an individual basis (see Sensei before the class).

Payment methods

cash or cheque at the dojo

e-transfer (preferred) to pay2vwa@gmail.com

via PayPal


VWA 2018 spring seminar & 2020 outdoor classes