What a history! 15 years and growing stronger.
On 12th September 2000, the very first Shin Sen Dojo Aikido class was held in Tamworth in the backyard of 2 Maitland Street.
There were no mats then. Only rugs and blankets and a sparing few spots having a very thin layer of sponge to roll on. After only a couple of weeks of training – the ground was as hard as cement and the rugs and blankets provided no relief from that. Yet – still everyone turned up and trained – even while it was raining. (It was just at the time of the big 2000 flood).
It was to be about 5 months later that mats (pictured) were used. These were borrowed from Taree from a good friend and they felt like heaven after rolling on the hard ground for so long. (we trained an hour longer that night – we could hardly believe our good fortune)!
At the beginning on April 2001, after 7 months of trying every hall and venue possible (there were literally hundreds!) – and without success, a chance opportunity gave us our first indoor venue to train. It was the Federation Park Soccer Fields hall in Taminda – next to the Racecourse and opposite the now old Bunnings site. We trained there for 10 years before it finally closed.
We did plenty of public demonstrations as well.
There are some stories to be told there – but not now. But what was amazing was that it was about an 150 mtr walk across a field of often waist high grass and bogs – and after training – finding your way back to the road in pitch black darkness.
Those were the days!
Then, there was another period of about 5-6 months while searching for another venue – we trained
in my living room. To have 8-10 people swinging bokkens and jos (wooden swords and staffs)
around was an incredible feat in itself.
Somehow we managed it all without breaking anything.
This lasted until May 2012 when we finally began training again in a new venue. The hall at the
Seventh Day Adventist Church in Kent Street (opposite Tamworth Golf Course) where we are
still training now.
I will be posting some images and videos from that time on our Facebook pages. So if you would
like to follow us – click on the links below: and please ….. like our pages as well. 🙂
I hope you enjoyed this.
Thank you Tamworth, it’s been a great ride.
More stories and memorable pictures to come – to celebrate our first 15 years. Thank you Tamworth, it’s been a great ride.