Ongoing Classes

Our ongoing martial arts classes are open to all graduates of the Valkyrie Base introductory course. Choose from integrated fitness and broad skill-building in the Lab, focused training in a single weapon in one of our Specializations, sparring and cross-discipline challenge in our Applied Science sessions — or mix and match all three!

Weekly attendance is recommended for students looking for a fun way to get active and stay fit, and who don't mind progressing gradually. Students with a bigger focus on technical improvement or who want to see substantial fitness and strength gains should aim to attend at least twice per week.

All of our ongoing classes can be accessed with a one-time drop-in fee of $30/class, our unlimited monthly plan, or a flexible punch card. To learn more about our class rates, follow the link below.

The Lab

The cornerstone of our training method is play and experimentation. Our Lab is where the magic happens. It's the most fun you'll ever have working out, and you'll develop real physical skill while you're at it. If you're looking to get stronger, build a new relationship with your body and how it moves, and build a deep knowledge of the "why" and "how" of fighting, this is the program for you!

The Lab

Swordfighting in The Lab
Valkyrie coaching team
Monday - Wednesday, 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Saturday, 10:00am - 12:00pm

Explore grappling, striking, and weapon work in an integrated space that helps you understand and apply principles across all three domains. The Lab is the playground of the generalist and the recreational martial artist, and a great place for specialists to improve their overall fighting game and deepen their knowledge of the principles underlying their technical training. Get a solid workout, a technical unarmed lesson, and a swordplay lesson, all in a single class!

You'll learn to adapt to any fighting context, gain a deep understanding of the mindset and tactics of fighting, and become familiar with a range of historical and modern weapon arts. Lab programming includes a fitness component to give you the strength you need to succeed, and the physical capability to stretch your limits and experiment without injury. Every class is taught by a different coaching team and features their unique perspective on the week's material.

Areas we frequently explore include: submission wrestling, standing grappling, kickboxing, mixed martial arts, knife combat, rapier fencing, cane fighting.

Specializations

Want to dig deep into one particular weapon? Our specializations are the place for you! Each of these classes focuses on just one weapon in depth, and gives you the opportunity to experiment within a tighter focus and build deep expertise in your favourite topic.

We currently offer 3 specializations:

Historical Swordplay

A plate from Book 1 of Marozzos text
David R. Packer & Phil Van Humbeck
Thursday, 7:00pm - 8:30pm

Grab a weapon and explore the swordplay systems of early modern Europe! This course features a collaborative and experimental approach to understanding fundamental historical texts such as Achille Marozzo’s The Duel, or the Flower of Arms for Single Combat, Both Offensive and Defensive (1536 - Bolognese) and Luis Díaz de Viedma's Method of Teaching Masters (1639 - Spanish).

Join us for an opportunity to dig deep into these and other historical sources. Become a researcher for the night, using your sword, body, and tactical problem-solving skills to understand the techniques and martial approaches of medieval and early modern fighters.

Knife Happy Hour

Free knife play during sparring

Justin Ring
Monday, 6:00pm - 7:00pm

All knives, all the time! Join coach Justin Ring for a one-hour focus class on modern knife fighting. You'll get a chance to learn new skills and hone your existing ones, and get plenty of sparring time in. This high-energy class is open to students of all experience levels.

Complement your self-defense or martial arts training by focusing on this fun and challenging weapon, or get the opportunity to expand on the knife skills you've started developing in The Lab.

Longsword

Students training with the longsword
Courtney Rice & Phil Van Humbeck
Friday, 7:00pm - 9:00pm

Longsword sparring is one of the fastest-growing sports in North America, and represents a marriage of historical knowledge and modern coaching methods. Learn how to succeed in today’s Historical European Martial Arts (HEMA) tournament scene, or just have a blast hitting your friends with a two-handed sword!

We study the historical writing of Achille Marozzo (16th C. Italian), Joachim Meyer (16th C. German), Diogo Gomes de Figueyredo (17th C. Portuguese), and others, to ground our practice in the techniques and philosophy of time periods when the longsword was in regular use. We combine this material with up-to-date sport science and a deep study of the current competitive longsword scene, to develop a modern longsword art that is part of a living, dynamic sword culture with strong ties to its historical roots. This class has recently been expanded by 30 minutes to include a greater focus on grappling — both unarmed and with sword in hand.

Applied Science

What good is all of that research if you don't get to apply it outside the laboratory? These dedicated sparring blocks give you ample opportunity to challenge yourself in friendly combat.

Community Sparring

Wrestling during Community Sparring
Valkyrie coaching team
Saturday, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
FREE

Every week, we open our doors to Vancouver’s broader martial arts community for a no-cost, open sparring block. Meet fighters from backgrounds as diverse as Savate, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Canne Italian, SCA rapier, Systema, and more. No instruction is provided during this time, and all new visitors must pass a safety orientation before fighting. This is not a competitive space, but a chance to relax and play with like-minded fighters in a low-pressure environment. Some safety gear is available to borrow, and fighters are welcome to bring any equipment that’s specific to their discipline.

POW!

boxing sparring
Justin Ring
Tuesday, 5:30pm - 7:00pm

An energetic workout to get your heart pumping, followed by a solid block of coached unarmed sparring. Get feedback on your boxing, wrestling, and mixed martial arts fighting from one of our most experienced coaches.

The workout incorporates gymnastic rings, bodyweight exercises, and free weights. It is accessible to students of all abilities, and will be scaled to suit the participants. Coached sparring is focused on building the tactical and psychological skills required to perform well under pressure, and technical instruction is limited (for technical unarmed instruction, you'll want to attend The Lab). Contact levels vary, and mouthguards are strongly recommended. Loaner wraps, gloves, shin guards, and headgear are available at the school, and participants are welcome to bring their own protective equipment.

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