Categories
Events JKA Courses News

JKA Spring 2022 Gasshuku, England

Spring 2022, and England is hosting the first JKA international training course in three years. Instructors, Sawada Kazuhiro 8th Dan from JKA Belgium, Imamura Tomio 8th Dan and Shimizu Ryosuke 6th Dan from the Tokyo Sohonbu, join Ohta Yoshinobu 7th Dan for this long overdue gasshuku weekend. 

A respectable contingent of our karateka neighbours are present, including from Scotland, Norway, Portugal, and Germany, all keen to participate and absorb the experience that these instructors have to offer… Sawada Sensei gives detailed explanations underlined with profound historic references, and uses physical proxies to great effect throughout his partner drills. Imamura Sensei expands upon uchi uke in basic partner work with makiotoshi making for interesting, if challenging, techniques. Shimizu Sensei demonstrates speed, power, and flexibility, leaving no doubt as to why he made such a formidable kumite competitor in the past. But what may have surprised is his exeptional form throughout katas Gankaku and Gojushiho Sho, with dynamic movement and slick direction changes. But that’s what the JKA does best: apportion equal time to kihon, kata and kumite, and where one finds a deficit, they strive to make improvements.

There was a lot to get through. The first 90 minutes of each day would be given over to kihon and kumite, followed by another 90 minutes being reserved for kata, bunkai, and instructor training. A friendly kumite match took place on Saturday, alongside a kyu grading, instructor theory, and referee practical. Sunday saw a dan grading followed by instructor practical exams.

So, a busy weekend with little time for much else. But this was a fantastic course taught by some of the most respected instructors in the world. And it was so good to finally catch up with karate friends after so long.

Congratulations to Alex on passing his 4th Dan! It’s an incredible achievement, and the culmination of 20 years of dedicated training.

Update: It was announced late-May 2022 that Sawada Sensei has been awarded 8th Dan by the JKA Shihankai. A just recognition for a great instructor who has dedicated his life to karate. Read more about Sawada Sensei on his academy’s site…

Categories
JKA Courses News

Japan Karate association in England Autumn 2019 Gasshuku

‪We enjoyed world-class training at the weekend with Senseis, Imamura Tomio 8th Dan and Kurihara Kazuaki 5th Dan from The Japan Karate Association’s Tokyo HQ and Ohta Yoshinobu 7th Dan, Chief Instructor in England. This was a brilliant, intense, and immensely technical, 3-day course!‬

Kurihara’s distance-making during his kumite class was a sight to behold – him covering ground with astounding speed and power. The partner changes seemed relentless to some as his drills became ever more challenging.

Ohta’s session couldn’t have been more of a contrast, advocating the feeling and connection of technique through muscle engagement during controlled kihon and kumite. As he explained, many advanced katas contain slow movements so when practising it is vital to consider the point at which you start, transition and finish the techniques.

Imamura‘s lesson featured many close-quarter techniques and reverse hip twists that one encounters throughout kata. Many applications felt awkward at first and somewhat opposed to the expansive style of Shotokan but after practise it felt more positive. Great to explore these movements.

Congratulations to Subhash! After training finished on Sunday there was a black belt examination where he passed Shodan. Very well deserved!

Ohta Sensei’s Birthday
There was another cause for celebration on Sunday with it being Ohta Sensei’s 60th birthday! There were two huge cakes organised by the association, along with a gift. It’s difficult to sum up in how high a regard he is held by everybody he teaches but Tony Cronk captured it well when he said, “…without you there would be no association.” 

Many happy returns, Ohta Sensei, from everyone at Shiranamikai!

error: