Tuesday 25 January 2011

Christchurch Seminars - An Exclusive Event

As usual the January (Summer) seminars in Christchurch turned out to be an exclusive event as most New Zealand karateka are still on holiday! This made the eight hours of karate all the more personal for the 11 participants, three of which came from the North Island.

The seminars covered a wide variety of drills which primarily focused on the cornerstones of Asai-ha Shotokan-ryu Karate-do, namely junansei (softness), shisei (posture/correct alignment), koshi no kaiten (rotation of the hips), and tai no shinshuku (the compression and stretch of the body). These drills were very different from the previous years seminars I taught in New Zealand, Japan, Italy and Germany, and will be partially the thematic base of this years courses.

The kata we covered was Kakuyoku-nidan, one of Asai Tetsuhiko Sensei's favourites, which admittedly was one of the kata I taught last year. I decided to teach this kata as it nicely tied together the drills worked on in kihon, and the participants were unfamiliar with it.
Our kumite practice was rather diverse covering Kakuyoku-nidan kata kumite no bunkai and applications of the vast array of kihon drills covered. This was clearly eye-opening for everyone, especially when they applied their techniques utilising natural energy, via junansei, and correct positioning. Literally karate as a martial art, as opposed to being a watered down sport. This is Traditional Karate!
Well done to all of the participants. It was a pleasure to teach you and I hope that you enjoyed experiencing the Shotokan of my late teacher, Asai Tetsuhiko. Osu, André.

© André Bertel, New Zealand 2011.

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