Chelmsford SKC went on Tour again to the English Riviera with 17 of our Members plus their families attending the KUGB Spring Karate Course in Paignton.
Those training from Chelmsford SKC included: Matthew Dowling, Anya Dunbar, John Dunbar, Joseph Dunbar, Ian Gilbert, Matthew Gilbert, Jamie Lottering, Wayne Lottering, Megan Naylor-Jones, Jane Naylor-Jones, Ben Pickwick, Eddie Pickwick, Pamela Pickwick, Richard Pickwick, Ella Roberts and Jessica Steadman. Richard Naylor-Jones was also there supporting the KUGB Facebook page with lots of photographs.
This course is an annual event that started way back in 1985 and is also known as 'Train with the Champions' as there are six Senseis who are all former International Competitors, they are: Andy Sherry (9th Dan), Terry O'Neill (8th Dan), Bob Poynton (8th Dan), Bob Rhodes (7th Dan), Billy Higgins (7th Dan) and Frank Brennan (7th Dan). Classes are divided into groups in accordance with grades and the Senseis rotate each class so you have the opportunity to train with each of them.
The format is simple (if not exhausting) you train twice a day minimum, Monday to Thursday, extra training sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday if you plan on grading soon, plus there is a Kata Competition on Thursday, Bo (Japanese Fighting Staff) sessions, two lectures – this time the subjects were ‘Is Karate a Jitsu or a Do’ and ‘Hydration and Dehydration’, Instructor Exams (if required) and then on Friday only one training session followed by separate Kyu and Black Belt gradings (again if required).
The course is structured to ensure equal emphasis is placed on the correct learning and development of the fundamentals of Kihon, Kata and Kumite.
On the Thursday a number of our members –Matthew Dowling, Anya Dunbar, Joseph Dunbar, Ian Gilbert, Matthew Gilbert, Jamie Lottering, Wayne Lottering, Megan Naylor-Jones, Ella Roberts and Jessica Steadman entered the Kata competition - which was open to all ages (Adults/Children). They all did very well with Ella Roberts coming 4th in the White to Purple Belt Category, Jessica Steadman came 4th in the Brown belt Category and Jamie Lottering coming 3rd in the Black belt Category (one position higher from last year).
Friday was an important day for both Matthew Dowling and Jamie Lottering. They had been working hard towards their 2nd Dan Grading Examination in recent months and this week had been focused on maximizing the opportunity of having so many experienced Senseis teaching them to help in the final preparations.
Both performed extremely well under the watchful eyes of Grading Examiners Sensei Andy Sherry (9th Dan) and Sensei Frank Brennan (7th Dan). At the end of the Grading, Sensei Sherry announced that both Matthew and Jamie had passed their Nidan. There were a lot of congratulations, not only from their Chelmsford supporters but also a large number of people who had been training with them on the Spring Karate Course all week. Well done Matthew and Jamie.
The Course also has a social side and there was a Social Evening for all the participants on the Monday night along with some Karaoke. Furthermore, as it is also a holiday resort and to enjoy the nice weather, in the afternoon’s Club members and their families met to enjoy the beach and parks. On Wednesday we managed to get all 28 of us (plus a couple of additional friends Adam Willsmore from Harrow and Edgard Lucena from Brazil) for Fish n’ Chips. On the final day the weather was so good that a number from our club spent the afternoon in the outdoor Water Park at Goodrington Sands (opposite the Torbay Sports Centre) enjoying the sun and rides. Those that remained were also able to watch later that evening a fantastic Firework display organised by the Water Park.
As usual it was a great week and everyone thoroughly enjoyed the weeks training. Immersed in Karate every day, allowed their skills, understanding and knowledge to develop further along with their fitness despite all the ice creams!