Noela Bingham’s Story

When did you start Aikido and why?

I started Aikido in 1983 at The Budokan in Frimley, my Sensei was John Harding. I started it because I enjoyed exercise and movement and was finding dancersise boring.I went to watch a class and became fascinated. On digging deeper and found the meaning of the name and that the whole process was about harmony and balance.

What are some of your main memories in Aikido?

My first main memory was grading for my 5th kyu and being given 4th kyu instead.
Then in 1989 the club attended Saito Sensei course at Brunel college, . I was enthralled by the weapons work and the clarity of instruction, I searched for an Iwama club, but there were no local ones .

What are your personal goals in Aikido?

My personal goals are to continue to learn and experience Aikido at a greater depth, including the energy work. Also to pass onto my students my love and enthusiasm for Aikido along with a respect for each other.

Why do you think Iwama Aikido is so unique?

Iwama Aikido is unique in that movements are taught clearly and reasons are given why each move is required. It offers the weapons system.

What can Aikido offer people, in your opinion?

Aikido can help people gain confidence in themselves and enthusiasm for learning something that will help their physical fitness and their mental awareness of their body and mind.

How long have you been training?

I have been training since 1983 (but with time off after 2 major heart operations and a shoulder injury,) makes 34 years.

Where have you travelled?

have travelled to Scotland, Wales and many courses in England. Also to Portugal.
I have experienced many different Teachers and styles of Aikido but always returned to Iwama Aikido where my heart lies.

I have been attended courses given by:-
Saito Sensei. 1989 and 1984.
Tomita Sensei 1998
Sensei Pat Hendricks. Several .
Sensei Hito Hira.
Bruce Klickstein
Sensei Andy Hathaway
Sensei Ezra.