This years annual KUGB Karate Summer School and Karate Kids' Summer Camp took place from 8th to 12th August at Lancaster University. In attendance from Chelmsford were Club Instructor Richard Naylor-Jones (5th Dan), Megan Naylor-jones (2nd Dan), Lee Rifat (1st kyu) and Serdsar Rifat (1st Kyu).
Photo: #PROUDTOBEKUGB - (L-R) Richard Naylor-Jones, Megan Naylor-Jones, Lee Rifat and Serdar Rifat
The course first started way back in 1981 and is also known as 'Train with the Champions' as the Instructors are all former International competitors. Those in attendance had the opportunity to train with the following Senseis: Andy Sherry (9th Dan), Terry O'Neill (8th Dan), Bob Poynton (8th Dan), Bob Rhodes (8th Dan), Billy Higgins (8th Dan) and Frank Brennan (8th Dan).
The level of expertise, knowledge and experience of these Senior KUGB Instructors was a fantastic opportunity not to be missed. It did not matter whether you were a beginner or a Black Belt, once fully immersed in Karate for a week with these incredible Instructors the learning process was continuous both in and outside of the Dojo.
The majority of attendees arrived on the Sunday, with many staying on campus including the Chelmsford quartet, ready and excited for a week's packed programme of events.
Photo: Lee Rifat kicking with Mawashi Geri (roundhouse kick)
Early Monday morning the course began with the first training session. Large numbers of students eagerly arrived and following the warm up classes were divided into groups according to their grades and students eagerly began increasing their knowledge and application of karate. This was followed by a 2 hour break (with a much needed late breakfast to restore both mental and physical energy) before the second training session. It was to be the pattern for each morning of the course. As each session arrived the Senseis rotated classes providing each group the opportunity to train under each of them.
Photo: Father and Son - Serdar Rifat with son Lee Rifat in the background
All the classes placed emphasis on the correct learning and development of the three fundamentals: Kihon, Kata and Kumite. However, each of the Senseis has their individual style and this ensured that students had to adapt quickly to the demands of each class. This also provided the stimulus to keep the learning process fresh whilst demonstrating both the breadth and depth of Karate and its' application.
Photo: Megan Naylor-Jones working with an opponent in the class
For those planning to take Dan gradings in the near future, there were also additional training classes on Tuesday and Wednesday with Sensei Sherry and Sensei Brennan. Both Lee and Serdar took advantage of this opportunity as they look to take their Dan grading later this year.
Photo: Richard Naylor-Jones training at Lancaster - Photo courtesy of David Craggs
With such a packed programme the week flew by and the course came to a close on the Friday with both a Kyu Grading and 1st & 2nd Dan Grading for those eligible.
It was fantastic to see so many enthusiastic students aged 5 years up, ranging from white belt to 7th Dan. Immersed in Karate every day allowed everyone to increase their karate skills, knowledge and fitness whilst enjoying the local area with friends and families. It is easy to see why for many of those who had the opportunity to experience this course it becomes a regular event in their calendar.
The dates for 2017 Lancaster course will be published very soon and of course there is also the Spring Karate Course in Torbay to add to your diary. Look out for them on their website www.kugb.org