Tuesday 10 December 2019


In a mere few weeks we will be entering into a new year and, also, a new decade! While theres still another 21 days of training left to do, Im beginning to do my annual wind-down training, by going through the new 国際空手道松濤館 (IKS: International Karatedo Shotokan) grading syllabus—基本 (Kihon), (Kata) and 組手 (Kumite).

Working through the updated syllabus, just a few days ago, I made a trip to train at Futagoji, which is another famous temple here in Oita Prefecture.

Located deep in the Kunisaki Peninsula, Futagoji was founded over 1,300 years ago. While, indeed, this iconic temple is in Oita, it still took me a few hours (from my home in central Oita City) to get there. As a result, it’s been over 12 years since I last visited and practiced Karate there.

Ever since I first came here to Japan in 1993, I’ve enjoyed training at shrines and temples. I’m not a Buddhist, nor follower of Shinto; however, the architectural beauty and immersion in nature, make them ideal for highly concentrated and intense karate practice. Here in Oita, such traditional places are so vast and, unlike more populated regions of Japan, it is possible to visit them without disturbance.

Lastly, I would like to say that announcements will be made soon:

(1) Regarding dojo and group affiliations to Japan with IKS.

(2) The new examination syllabus.

Osu and greetings from chilly Oita City, Japan. - André

© André Bertel. Oita City, Japan (2019).

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