BigRock Aikikai Reopens Jun 27th!

Posted on by Sensei Steve Erickson


We are extremely happy to announce BigRock Aikikai will be ready to reopen on Sat Jun 27th.  We will have Child, Youth and Adult classes on this day.  In the week that follows there will be classes on Mon Jun 29th, classes will be cancelled on Canada Day (Wed Jul 1st) and then all classes will resume on typical days starting Thu Jul 2nd.

We recognize that students may have different levels of comfort when it comes to getting back “together”.   Our instructional team is working very hard to make all accommodations possible in order to keep everyone comfortable.

Resuming Classes

Please find our modified class schedule here (the only modification done is the reduction of most class durations by 15 minutes to allow for participants to come and go with reduced congestion).  We will be returning to classes by age group.

Healthy Students Wanted!

It's imperative that only healthy students come to the dojo.  For younger students this means parents need to confirm their children are well before bringing them to the dojo.  We are obligated to send home immediately anyone who shows signs of not being well.  AHS has an online self-assessment tool, in case anyone is interested.


  • Every student should wash their hands with soap and water before stepping on the mats.
  • There will also be plenty of hand sanitizer around the dojo and training space for students to use whenever necessary.  
  • We strongly encourage all students to keep their hands clean and … you guessed it, not touch their face
  • Please make sure uniforms are clean for each class.

Arriving for and leaving from classes

Our goal is to allow students from one class to leave the dojo before students of the following class arrive.  With your help, we can reduce the congestion in between classes.

  • We ask students to arrive no more than 5 minutes early for class.
  • Parents - please drop your kids off & pick them up without coming into the dojo.  If you need to come in however, that's okay, just respect the 2m distance.
  • When picking up your child, please make sure they know whether to meet you outside the dojo or wait for you inside the entrance way.  We understand it may not be safe for younger students to leave the building alone.  Everyone's safety is our top priority.  It's up to you to decide whether to meet inside or outside, whatever is best for your family.
  • Whenever possible, students should arrive for class in uniform as we are obligated to reduce the use of the changerooms.  If students must change using the changerooms, they will be expected to respect the 2m distance.
  • Parents please be extra careful in the parking lot as there may be more children walking to and from vehicles alone.

Parent Viewing

We are required to minimize parent viewing for the duration of Stage 2.  When possible, please do not stay at the dojo during your child's class.  If necessary, please respect the 2m distance.  We understand parents of our youngest students will need to stay and that's completely acceptable.


Communal dishes will not be available for the duration of Stage 2.  Everyone should bring their own water bottle each class (and remember to take it home with them after class).  We will have disposable drinking cups beside the water jug for use by those students who forget their water bottle.

Training Together - Cohort Groups


  • The guidelines allow for groups of individuals (up to 50) to train together without maintaining a 2m distance.  For us, each Class will be defined as its own Cohort Group.  
  • Each individual student may only participate in one Cohort Group (class) for the duration of Stage 2.  This means students can not participate in more than one class (weapons class is an exception because training will be done respecting the 2m distance).  All students will be required to stay in the same class for the duration of Stage 2, regardless of whether they would normally move classes (as they age up, for example).
  • For families with siblings who are in different classes, you are welcome to move one child so that both children can participate in the same class.

We want everyone to feel comfortable coming back to the dojo.  When it comes to partner practice we suggest each student choose the Partner Practice Method they are most comfortable with:

  • Solo practice - just like you've been doing at home, all by yourself with lots of space.
  • Dedicated Partner practice - pair up with one other student and stick with them for the duration of the partner practice component of class.  You can stick with this one partner for as many classes as you like or choose a new dedicated partner each class.  It will be up to the individual students to make the dedicated partner arrangements.
  • Open Partner practice - just like we traditionally do.

For younger students we will help them organize themselves in the different Methods of Practice.  Please discuss Partner Practice Methods with your child so they are confident in what you would like them doing.

Teachers - ITP are most welcome to continue to help out during younger classes.  They will be required to respect the 2m distance from the students of the class.

Weapon's class

All weapon's class students should bring their own weapons to each class.  For those students who do not have their own, the dojo will provide weapons that are to be kept by the individual for the duration of stage 2.  Each piece of equipment will be sanitized before every class.

Mezzanine (2nd floor gathering area)

The mezzanine gathering area will be closed to all students for the duration of Stage 2.  Sorry, we are obligated to limit hanging-out as much as possible.  While we are in Stage 2, dojo time will be “come, train, leave”.  We look forward to when the dojo can return to being much more but this is a wonderful first step in the right direction!


We will implement a cleaning protocol that meets or exceeds the guidelines put forth by the gov't of Alberta.  Anyone who would like details of our cleaning protocol, please let me know and I will gladly share those with you.


AHS recommends NOT wearing a mask while “conducting intense physical activities”.  Aikido certainly qualifies as an intense physical activity.  Therefore we are recommending students do NOT wear masks while on the mat.  Anyone off the mat and not training is welcome to wear a mask.

Online Classes

When in-dojo classes resume, online classes will be modified.  Please find our Online Aikido Calendar here.