The moments of sitting before and after a class is a link to the practice of Morihei Ueshiba the founder of aikido.
Kisshomaru Ueshiba the son of the founder shares this memory with us.
"The Founder's training was not merely limited to the dojo. It was in his daily life and, especially before and after entering the dojo that its true significance lay. This attitude that may be described as the purification of mind and body (misogi) should be deeply appreciated.
Before practice he would sit in front of the altar preparing himself psychologically by calming and controlling himself and seeing that his refreshed spirit was gushing forth like a fountain… then he would begin. Likewise, at the end of practice he would sit upright before the altar, settling and controlling his mind, once again absorbed in sustaining his "ki." "