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Aikido of San Diego

A full-time dojo, dedicated exclusively to teaching the martial art of Aikido since 2000. Chief Instructor, Dave Goldberg Sensei, 6th Dan.

Aikido of San Diego

A full-time dojo, dedicated exclusively to teaching the martial art of Aikido since 2000. Chief Instructor, Dave Goldberg Sensei, 6th Dan.

Aikido of San Diego

Call Us: 619 993-2454

619 993-2454

Call Us: 619 993-2454

Sensei presenting a new black belt to a student

Frequently Asked Questions

What's the difference between Aikido and other martial arts with more familiar names like Karate, MMA, or Taekwondo?

The vast majority of common martial arts schools focus on a competitive relationship with conflict, and forceful solutions that mainly involve blocking and hitting. Aikido focuses on circular movement that blends with attack, and redirects it without force or harm.

Aikido teaches us to work WITH the conditions of conflict rather than against them. While all the arts value a warrior spirit, Aikido cultivates one in harmony with life. Ask yourself..."What message do I want to take away from my training, or pass on to my children?"

There is also a difference in how Aikido of San Diego is run in comparison to most other schools. Most martial arts studios will pressure you to make a long-term financial commitment. At Aikido of San Diego, your financial commitment is month-to-month and you are treated like a member of a community.

How long does it take to get a black belt?

On average, about 5-7 years. Sometimes it's less, and sometimes more. It really depends on your frequency and level of commitment. The journey begins with a single step, and then another one, and so on. It's best to view the road ahead as a fulfilling daily investment in yourself.

Can I try out a class before I join the dojo?

Adult beginners may sign up for up to 3 trial classes. You may observe as many classes as you like.

Do you offer any discounts, like for families, etcetera?

We offer family registrations a monthly $10 discount per additional individual. We do not offer any discounts to any other groups/classifications.

How long will it take until I'm proficient?

That depends on what you mean, and there's no way of predicting how long it takes anyone to reach any level of proficiency—whether that's from the perspective of self-defense or personal growth. If you're interested in becoming a living expression of Aikido then simply make attending practice part of your life, embrace the lessons of the art, and it will come. When you see that the path and destination are inseparable, then any impatience surrounding the question disappears.

I'm not the most athletic or physically coordinated person. How would I fit in?

First of all, almost everyone with this belief is surprised by what they could do with some quality training. In Aikido, everyone is expected to train at a level accessible to their partner. More "athletic" or experienced people also benefit by using their time with you to improve the clarity and sensitivity of their skills. In this way, both of you move forward together. Aikido is inclusive by nature and that is reflected in the Aikido of San Diego experience and community.

What "style" of Aikido do you practice?

We consider styles to be self-imposed limitations on a bigger picture. With that said, we do have a distinct lineage and connection to the Founder, Morihei Ueshiba. Aikido of San Diego is connected to the Aikido World Headquarters (Aikikai) in Tokyo. If it interests you, you are welcome to discuss the Chief Instructor's training background and lineage with him personally.

I just want to learn how to protect myself from anything as quickly as possible. Is Aikido of San Diego for me?

Probably not. Aikido is a very effective approach to conflict. If you did join us, though, you should understand that you're never going to be invulnerable. If there's a pressing reason you believe you need to defend yourself now, then there are plenty of simple, intensive self-defense classes to take.

It's a mistake to see self-defense and martial arts as exactly the same thing. Self-defense is an objective, and martial arts training like Aikido is a warrior's journey. Aikido can be used very assertively in an assault situation, but it's intended to help us develop from the inside out as more harmonious, balanced, and self-aware people. It should be understood that things generally don't happen overnight. Improvement happens better when you're enjoying the practice, displaying some patience, and trusting the path. Aikido is an amazing tool, but it doesn't reveal its best expression through anxious eyes.

Any other questions? Send Sensei an email.

On the Fence?

You are invited to visit the dojo, speak with Sensei, observe any class, or sign up for up to 3 trial classes.

A place to leave your shoes when you enter the dojo

"Those who are possessed by nothing possess everything."

Morihei Ueshiba - O Sensei
The Founder of Aikido

Visit Us

Observers & visiting Aikidoka are always welcome.

The dojo is 2 minutes from I-15 and I-8,
near Friars and Mission Gorge Rd

6356 Riverdale Street
San Diego, CA 92120

Taking public transportation?
Use the MTS Trip Planner

Connect with Us

We would love to hear from you!

To reach Goldberg Sensei
with any of your Aikido
or dojo-related questions

Email to
Phone 619 993-2454 (AIKI)

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