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Old Members (Posted: 23/01/2020)

Did you ever train with us?

It could be that you trained at Radcliffe High School, St. Andrew’s, Greenhill Primary School, Radcliffe Youth Club, The Mosses Centre or where we are now – The Blackburne Hall.

That’s not that many venues spanned over the years and whether we were called Radcliffe Karate Club, Elton Karate Cub, Bury Karate Club or Sutemi Shukokai Karate Ryu – we are still one and the same holding true to our original principles and beliefs about Karate.

You may have trained as a child and are now an adult with children of your own, so why do you not bring your self, your children or even your grandchildren along?

What better gift can a parent (or grandparent) give to their offspring than to be confident that can “look after” themselves?

Why not give me a call even if it’s only to let me know, where you are now and what you are doing?

Posted by Sensei Stewart Procter | 7th Dan Kyoshi | Chief Instructor


The Building Blocks of Karate (Posted: 22/01/2020)

The building blocks of Karate

As with anything of substance Shukokai Karate is based upon a strong foundation.

Like a forty-two story office building standing tall and proud, Shukokai Karate is supported by four cornerstones without which it could not have stood the test of time. These four building blocks are: a proper stance, proper posture, proper balance and proper “kime” or focus.

Without these four basic building blocks working in harmony with each other, equally weighted, and equally given their due, you will never learn to develop your techniques to their full potential, and thus you will never have any hope of truly understanding let alone mastering, the art of Shukokai Karate.

STANCE

Your stance is the platform upon which everything else is built.

It is the beginning, middle, and end of all that you will do as a Shukokai Karate-ka. More than any other style of Karate Shukokai is noted for its long low stances which, when practiced correctly, are very effective at creating a low centre of gravity, promoting good stability, and fostering strong muscular development.

Early on in your karate training you will quickly be made aware of the fact that landing in a poor stance, however momentarily, will create a level of instability that will prevent you from making any effective defensive or offensive movements, while at the same time you will be leaving yourself open to a successfully attack or counter attack from your opponent.

Given such an opening even a junior belt properly trained will seize upon the moment and may be virtually assured of victory due to your lack of stability and strength.

Without a proper stance nothing else is possible.

POSTURE

Your posture says it all.

From walking down the street, to sitting in a business meeting, or simply driving in your car. In your daily life how you carry yourself says a lot about who you are. Throughout our early childhood we were all told to sit up straight, to stand up properly, to keep our head up, and to watch where we were going. Today how you personally hold yourself, how you carry yourself when you move, and how you focus on your surroundings, depends largely on how well you have taken these early lessons to heart.

In Shukokai Karate it is vital that you learn to always centre your torso over your hips when you move. If you can remain conscious of this fact, especially when shifting from one stance to another, then by combining good hip movement with proper posture and balance you will create a strong vertical centre, thus making smooth rapid movements possible and effective.

The hips should be considered the steering wheel of your body.

You will quickly come to learn that poor posture equates to poor everything else.

BALANCE

Good balance is the result of a proper thought.

In karate from the moment you start to move from one stance to another or from one technique to another, you are essentially risking all that you have in the hope of achieving something better. This period of transition often lasts for less than a split second of time, a time in which balance plays the role of the sun, acting as the centre of your universe around which all of your other actions must revolve. Without proper balance a successful out come in anything karate related is virtually impossible.

Balance, however, can never be achieved unless the scales are even. While your technique and skill will weigh heavily on one side of the scale, they must in turn be equally balanced by the mental and spiritual side of your being. In karate trying to perform any movement or technique requires a level playing field, one in which each function must be awarded just the right amount of concentrated effort necessary to make the whole thing work as you intended it to.

Balance is the sum of all movement added together.

Only when the body, mind, and spirit are in complete harmony can proper balance be achieved.

KIME

Kime is the sum of all your efforts.

The concentrated focus of all your physical, mental, and spiritual actions combined at a specific moment and place in time is called kime. The moment you make any kind of movement in karate your true level of kime will be reflected in the accuracy and quality of your techniques and any errors in judgement will then be clearly visible for everyone else to see. If your kime is found lacking then in effect nothing you just did should be considered real. No amount of strength, no amount of speed, and no amount of kiai can ever make up for a lack of kime.

In your training you must believe in what you are doing, and that belief must have a definitive beginning and ending, an ending that you will find you can only reach by putting all of your other thoughts aside and focusing for as long as it takes to achieve your goal. Without this all encompassing belief in the success of what you are attempting to do your techniques will become nothing more than physical actions without any mental substance, in a world where mental substance is often the difference between victory or defeat.

Without kime your karate has no value.

Kime is only effective when nothing else matters.

So there you have it, the four basic fundamentals without which your karate will not develop properly.

So train hard, train often, and make these fundamentals the basis for everything you do in the dojo.

Remember – Stance, posture, balance, and kime,  are the foundation upon which you must build.

Part the clouds – see the way

“The objective of karate is to contribute to the evolution of the human spirit through physical and mental training.”

Posted by Sensei Stewart Procter | 7th Dan Kyoshi | Chief Instructor


Why You Should Enrol Your Child In Our Karate Club (Posted: 19/01/2020)

Why you should enrol your child in our Karate Club

Public Health England guidelines say that children aged 5-18 should take part in physical activity for at least 60 minutes a day. A recent study showed that over 75% of children fail to exercise for half of this suggested time. We understand the value of getting children exercising and that it can be tough to separate your child from their play station or computer. That’s why there are thousands of clubs offering engaging, social and fun Karate classes for kids.

Activity: Martial Artists are some of the fittest people in the professional sport circuit. Karate provides your child with the opportunity to tone and strengthen muscles, increase flexibility and agility and have a better posture. It is a great way to burn calories and instigate child weight loss as well as improving stamina and endurance.

Focus: One of the many challenges facing parents today is how to break a child’s dependence on the internet and upon other technologies. Karate clubs are free from iPhones and other distractions such as loud music and televisions. This helps children focus, learn patience a valuable life skill.

Self Confidence and Self Respect: We have witnessed many students develop and build confidence through us. Having the opportunity to learn a unique skill and progress through gradings can build a tremendous amount of confidence. Of course, this doesn’t come without a little reminder of humility, these is always a bigger fish!

Conflict Resolution: A good instructor will teach your child that words are never grounds to use Karate skills in a physical alteration, but to resolve the conflict. Your child will learn to respond without reacting in the form of physical aggression. We teach anti bullying classes that are designed to make children more aware of their surroundings and techniques for avoiding or dealing with difficult situations.

Fun and Social: The most important part of our Karate class is the social aspect. It will allow your child to interact with a greater number of like-minded children and develop their social skills. In an enjoyable environment they will be begging you to complete their hours exercise and you will be safe in the knowledge that you are contributing to a brighter and healthier future.

Posted by Sensei Stewart Procter | 7th Dan Kyoshi | Chief Instructor


Five Reasons That You Should Enrol Your Child In Our Karate Club (Posted: 18/01/2020)

Why should I enrol my child in a Karate club?

Public Health England guidelines say that children aged 5-18 should take part in physical activity for at least 60 minutes a day. A recent study showed that over 75% of children fail to exercise for half of this suggested time. We understand the value of getting children exercising and that it can be tough to separate your child from their play station or computer. That’s why there are thousands of clubs offering engaging, social and fun Karate classes for kids.

Activity: Martial Artists are some of the fittest people in the professional sport circuit. Karate provides your child with the opportunity to tone and strengthen muscles, increase flexibility and agility and have a better posture. It is a great way to burn calories and instigate child weight loss as well as improving stamina and endurance.

Focus: One of the many challenges facing parents today is how to break a child’s dependence on the internet and upon other technologies. Karate clubs are free from iPhones and other distractions such as loud music and televisions. This helps children focus, learn patience a valuable life skill.

Self Confidence and Self Respect: We have witnessed many students develop and build confidence through us. Having the opportunity to learn a unique skill and progress through gradings can build a tremendous amount of confidence. Of course, this doesn’t come without a little reminder of humility, these is always a bigger fish!

Conflict Resolution: A good instructor will teach your child that words are never grounds to use Karate skills in a physical alteration, but to resolve the conflict. Your child will learn to respond without reacting in the form of physical aggression. We teach anti bullying classes that are designed to make children more aware of their surroundings and techniques for avoiding or dealing with difficult situations.

Fun and Social: The most important part of our Karate class is the social aspect. It will allow your child to interact with a greater number of like-minded children and develop their social skills. In an enjoyable environment they will be begging you to complete their hours exercise and you will be safe in the knowledge that you are contributing to a brighter and healthier future.

Posted by Sensei Stewart Procter | 7th Dan Kyoshi | Chief Instructor


Join the Club (Posted: 16/01/2020)

The obvious benefit from learning Karate is the improvement of physical health.

The student learns to exercise regularly several times a week, which is one of the most useful lifetime habits. This results in balancing blood pressure and circulation, lowering the cholesterol level, and reducing the number of visits to the doctor. Moreover the student gets flexible muscles and joints, which improves a person’s well-being.

Building self-esteem and confidence is based on the fact that the students sets a goal, puts his mind on it, does whatever it takes, achieves the goal and at the end gets promoted to the next belt.

In a nutshell that is the formula for success in life. The student sets a goal to become a black belt. A journey of a thousand miles can be walked through step by step.

Don’t wait – join today

Posted by Sensei Stewart Procter | 7th Dan Kyoshi | Chief Instructor


KARATE (Posted: 13/01/2020)

Karate is a Japanese form of combat that began on the island of Okinawa. The name means’empty hands’ and the art is a method of fighting which utilises all parts of the body as deadly weapons. It consists of a series of blocks and counter-attacks by which a single exponent can render multiple assailants harmless. The art owes much to its predecessor, kung fu, which was the root of its modern development. The modern-day innovator of the system was a mild-mannered Okinawan schoolteacher named Gichin Funakoshi, who in 1917 gave a private exhibition of the art to the emperor of Japan. Impressed by what he saw, the emperor gave karate his stamp of approval and at once it became very popular. Since World War II karate has, like all the martial arts, grown at a tremendous rate. In the early 1970s an organisation was established to govern karate on a world scale and to promote it as a new and fascinating sport. This organisation, the World Union of Karate Organisations (WUKO), has 48 member countries.

TRAINING BEGINS

Karate has many different styles, of which one of the most popular throughout the world is Shukokai, meaning ‘the way for all’. The place or hall where one trains is called a ‘dojo’; the instructor is called a ‘sensei’, which is Japanese for ‘teacher’. A dojo is much more than a place where a karateka (one who practises karate) trains. It is a kind of spiritual meeting place, a brotherhood of people who are all following the philosophical ways of karate as well as the physical. Therefore the dojo is treated with great reverence and respect, whether it is a room within a sports complex or simply a disused garage. All students bow upon entering and leaving. The instructor, who is always addressed as the sensei, instils principles of etiquette into every student. The strict code of conduct does much to cultivate the discipline that is so much part and parcel of karate-do (‘way of karate’).

Posted by Sensei Stewart Procter | 7th Dan Kyoshi | Chief Instructor