Formerly known as the Aikido Yamato Dojo founded in 2006, became Aikikai Malta as an Aikido school in 2018 after assessment and authorisation by the Aikikai Foundation (Japan). It is led by Kevin Bonanno (Dojo-Cho) and Claude Calleja (Senpai).
In 2010 the Aikido Yamato Dojo became affiliated with the Buikukan-Provence Aikido school, lead by Jean Francois Riondet Shihan, a successor of Hirokazu Kobayashi Shihan, a former disciple of Morihei Ueshiba, the founder of Aikido. His school is registered and based in Aix en Provence, France making the Aikido Yamato Dojo its first branch Dojo outside of France.
In 2018, Aikikai Malta became acknowledged by the Aikikai Foundation (Aikido World Headquarters), Tokyo, Japan for the diffusion of Aikido in the Republic of Malta under the supervision of the Aikikai Director Jun Nomoto Shihan (7th Dan), chief instructor of Satomi Hakkenkai, Tokyo, Japan.
The Aikikai Foundation is presently lead by Moriteru Ueshiba Doshu.
Aikikai Malta retains its strong ties and association with the Buikukan-Provence in France and Jean-Francois Riondet Shihan remains its Technical Director to this day.
As an acknowledged school by the Aikikai Foundation, practitioners at Aikikai Malta practice Aikido to teaching standards, rules and regulations established by the Aikikai Foundation following the principles laid down by the founder, Morihei Ueshiba. This means that Black Belt (Yudansha) grades awarded by Aikikai Malta under the supervision of Nomoto Shihan are issued and registered with the Aikikai Foundation, being recognised world-wide.
Since its foundation in 2006 (as Yamato Dojo), Aikikai Malta regularly receives visiting Aikidoka from around the globe and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. It strives to enrich its Aikido experience and broaden its exchange of Aikido knowledge, friendship and community.
Aikikai Malta welcomes anyone who wants to discover Aikido as a martial art and a Way of Life. Whether you are a prospective practitioner or an experienced Aikidoka feel free to come over at our Dojo (training place) to observe, ask questions…or practice!
The Dojo is registered with both SportMalta and the Directorate for Quality and Standards in Education as a provider for Informal Education.