Aikido Nelson instructor Callum Cockerell with his sons Lochlan, 11, and Ethan, 8, at their dojo in Tahunanui. Photo: Charles Anderson.

Aikido club turns 30


Cornelia Baumgartner and Martin Hartman started Aikido in Nelson 30 years ago after moving to Nelson from Switzerland and now the club is celebrating reaching the milestone.

All through the year the club has events planned to mark the decades it has been in existence.

“It’s going to be a big year,” says instructor Callum Cockerell.

The club has a ‘golden oldies reunion’ on Saturday, January 27, for all the old teachers and students, as well as a three-day workshop by Aikido master Aaron McConnel who lives and trains in Japan.

“We have people coming from Japan, America, Australia and all around New Zealand,” Callum says.

He says that the sport is for anyone interested in testing themselves.

His own children also train now.

“I enjoy the physicality being able to test yourself and find you can do things you didn’t think you could.”

At the end of February will be a demonstration in the city centre and, in August, there will be “the big one” where the Motueka Rec Centre will be filled with students and sixth dan teachers for a three-day demonstration.

“It’s what we all look forward to,” says Callum.

For more information check the Aikido Nelson Facebook page.