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The beautiful story of Sensei Max Ainley’s dojo

Quite surely most Karate practitioners would want their own private dojo one day. Not all succeed though. Only the ones willing to put much effort and believe in their dream do.

Similar is the story of Sensei Max Ainley, from South Elmsall, UK. Sensei Ainley always wished for his own private dojo back in his early years, but money space to actually make this a reality was a million miles away. In 1990 he moved to a new location to live, where he had the space to bring this dojo into reality. This was “Step One”!

His craft? - A bricklayer and a student of his, who happened to be a carpenter.

By that time, the cost of bricks was around 300 pounds per thousand, so was far too costly for his budget. Fortunately, one day Sensei Ainley came across some buildings with good class bricks, which were to be demolished. He immediately came up with a great idea.

“Why not buy these second-hand bricks?”


To his surprise, the owner said he could have them for free! Working for a local builder, Sensei Ainley borrowed his wagon, and weeks later had around 20,000 bricks in his back yard. This was “Step Two”!

Two years later the dojo was completed! It was accomplished by putting lots of spare time and love.  This was “Step Three”! - And a dream to (finally) come true!

The photo bellow is the entrance.

Max Ainley dojo

Who-is-who

Max-AinleySensei Max Ainley started training Uechi Ryu in 1974, coming from Wado ryu. Uechi then was quite rare in UK. His original teacher was Dave Scott Sensei. A pupil of Kanei Uechi Sensei. He is a member of IUPA holding the teacher level title. All of Sensei Ainley's training has been via the old way of a Uechi Ryu, the three Chinese kata and only. His training started with the three year practice of Sanchin. On the forth year he started learning Seisan with his Sensei plus conditioning drills and some kumite. After four years he was promoted to Shodan. Never having trained for belts, this is the only Dan rank he ever won. Sensei Ainley preferred to follow a type Chinese way of training for years of 7-day training, giving great focus on Sanchin Kata.