(Callum Forbes demonstrating Hapkido White Belt technique with Rhiannon Forbes)
Our Hapkido classes are for adult and teenage students of all levels of ability.
Hapkido Essentials - An intense 45 minute class that covers cardio exercises, stretching exercises and Hapkido striking techniques before finishing with free sparring. It is ideal for:
- People wanting a challenging fitness work out.
- People wanting to develop or maintain their flexibility and mobility.
- People wanting to learn good basic martial arts skills which are the foundation for Hapkido but are also applicable to most other martial arts styles.
Hapkido - A 45 minute class covering our core Hapkido syllabus consisting of falling techniques, patterns, self-defence drills, self-defence techniques and finishes with a self-defence scenario drill. It is ideal for:
- People wanting to learn the Hapkido syllabus and progress through the Hapkido grading system.
- People who just want to learn self-defence (e.g. older students or students who may have difficulty attending the Hapkido Essentials class).
We run these classes back to back on Monday and Thursday evenings and most people will want to do both classes back-to-back but the split classes format provides options for people who may find this difficult. For all intents and purposes both classes are run as a single class so people doing the Essentials class only do their own warm down after this class finishes and people doing the Hapkido class only do their own warm up prior to joining the class.
For the purposes of calculating Membership Fees, the Monday and Thursday back-to-back classes count as one class regardless if you do one or both classes on that night(s) you attend.
Hapkido Blitz - covers elements of both Hapkido Essentials and Hapkido in a single 45 minute format. It has a quick warm up consisting of a cardio routine and a stretching routine before moving into the Core Hapkido syllabus.
Training in Hapkido - Age or gender are no barriers to training in any of the Hapkido classes. Our oldest student started his Hapkido journey when he turned 69 and earned his 1st Dan black belt in his early 80's. Every student who enrols for Hapkido we see as a future black black. So our training programme aims to achieve that outcome for every student by incorporating a progressive grading system that ensures that basic techniques are learnt correctly before more complicated techniques are taught.
We also consult with and monitor each student regularly so we can help them meet their training goals.
It normally takes between 4 to 5 years to progress through the 8 colour belt grades to 1st Dan black belt. By the time an adult student has have attained 1st Dan black belt he or she should be able to handle most self-defence situations.
Life after Black Belt
While earning a 1st Dan black belt in Hapkido is quite an achievement, it is like a university degree in that there are higher levels of qualifications to earn. In fact our core New Zealand Hapkido syllabus goes to 4th degree black belt (Master level) and beyond that are higher levels of advanced study that students may pursue with the support of both the New Zealand Hapkido Federation and the World Kido Federation/Hanminjok Hapkido Association through to Grand Master level (8th and 9th Dans) which takes 40 or more years of study. So the achievement of the 1st Dan black belt is only the first step on what really is a journey for life.
Hapkido Sparring Class
We run monthly Hapkido Sparring classes on a Sunday morning for people who want to focus on this aspect of Hapkido.
This allows us to prepare for events such as the biennial Hapkido World Championships in South Korea.
Hapkido sparring allows kicking, punching, close in strikes, throws and take downs, joint locking techniques and ground fighting and each of those is a specilaised skill in its own right.
Because of this, these classes are also taken by senior black belts from other martial arts styles and are also attended by students from other styles.
While these are the most physically demanding classes that we run, they are held in an atmosphere of camaradie and mutal respect among those present.
The sparring class is free to all students enrolled at our Academy and our guests from other styles.
We teach a range of weapons within the New Zealand Hapkido syllabus. The weapons we teach are short stick, belt/rope, walking stick, long stick, knife and improvised items (e.g. common everyday items such as clothing, coins, pens, cell phones etc, that can be used as self defence aids in an emergency). These are taught as part of our regular Hapkido classes and form part of the grading syllabus for most grades.
At black belt level they become more important and form a large part of the Black Belt Dan Grading requirements. We have also expanded our "traditional" range of NZ Hapkido weapons to include "traditional" Korean weapons.
The Koreans also used weapons some of which were unique to Korea and others that were used in both Japan and China so we have a large range of weapons to choice from. These weapons included a a wide variety of swords ranging from 2 handed down to short "butterfly swords", a range of spears and staffs of varying lengths, the fan, segmented staffs and a range of more exotic weapons. This gives our black belts more choices in studying weapons that particularly interest them as well as giving middle ranked black belts (4th Dan and higher) an area of additional study for higher level gradings. This helps us to grow the New Zealand Hapkido skills base.
We also run a specialist Weapons Class
on Saturday Mornings covering Medieval European unarmed combat and weapons in association with the Order of the Boar
. While this may seem a bit odd, as a Martial Arts Academy we aim to provide more choice and variety for our students providing that each class is relevant and because the Saturday Weapons Class has a focus on universal martial arts principles, it is relevant to all other martial arts training.