a Monthly International Newsletter
May 2015

Ohtsuka head                 








"The only difference between the possible and impossible is one's will"

-Hironori Ohtsuka




In This Issue
Editor's Notes
White to Black Belt by Ray Hughes
Adrift by Robert Hunt
Concussions and Karate Participation
Sports Psychology
Zen Stories
Moral Wisdom
Wado Seminar
Wado Seminar
Wado Agenda
WIKF Seminars with Sensei Wicks
Master Takagi Seminar
48th International Summer Camp
Competitions and Events
Join Our Mailing List
    Editor's   Notes
AW photo
Ray Hughes

Do we practice what we preach?

  I hear many senior karate instructors, including myself, tell our students how to act and the need to train. We tell them they need to place themselves into stressful situations so they can learn to handle such situations. We tell them karate training is for life.

Do we practice what we preach?

Something to    think about.    


Welcome to the world of karate history, philosophy, other martial art information 


Dear Karate Enthusiast;


The purpose of this newsletter is to pass on historical information, philosophical views and activities of interest to karate martial artists around the world. Please send your article, event or activity with a photo of the instructor and/or event organizer by the 20th of the preceding month to get your information in this newsletter. Please send your text in a Word document. Please send posters and pictures in small jpeg files, thank you. 


Instructors, please forward to other karate enthusiasts,  

thank you.



Volunteer Staff

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Disclaimer: Titles                   bow


One of the most difficult areas that this newsletter has to deal with is the use of instructor titles. We are very sensitive to this issue and do not want to offend or insult anyone. To simplify this daunting problem we will use the following guidelines with the use of instructor titles:


a. The correct title of the instructor(s) must be in the article or seminar information submitted by the author or event organizer.

b. All captions that we place under photos will be:
  1. Japanese instructors: Last name followed by the title Sensei.

  2. Non-Japanese instructors: The title Sensei followed by the last name of the instructor.

c. Any title and name that is placed in this newsletter by newsletter staff will use the title of Sensei.



We consider the title "Sensei" a very prestigious title




Ray Hughes


White to Black Belt

 An analogous Journey to Life Itself


                                       By Ray Hughes



There is a saying from an old philosopher (me) "Everything you need to know about life can be learned from the white to black belt experience." The similarities between a student's experience moving from white belt to black belt and the human experience moving from young to old is quite remarkable, fascinating and sometimes eerie . And if you appreciate this understanding, then answers are available in any project, situation, or place in life.



When we started out for the first time in karate, we were excited. We  knew nothing and the idea of black belt was so far removed it hardly entered our mind. And if we were honest with ourselves, we didn't think we would make it anyway. We started forward with dreams as our only expectations. We were white belts.                                                                                                            

This experience isn't much different from when a person starts out on the path of adulthood; fresh, innocent, and just excited to start moving forward in life; simply white belts in the training of life.


For a while it was great. In karate we started to learn a couple of moves, memorized a few beginning katas, and started to bounce around a little in kumite. There were no expectations and poor performance was predictable. Life was great. We didn't even know what we didn't know. We were blue belts.


This was exactly like the twenties. We were young, na´ve, and everyone including ourselves knew we didn't know anything. We were trying to learn what was going on in life and searching to find out who we were. We had moved from white belt to the first color belt of life.


Then it started to get a little more complicated. We moved to green belt, now intermediate students. Skills started to get better, awareness of the big martial art picture improved and we became more dangerous, mostly to ourselves.......................................................... 




To read the rest of this article click HERE


Ray Hughes

Scottsdale Martial Arts Center






Robert Hunt
Robert Hunt




The Karate Tapestry - Part 12


Robert Hunt



          Once karate migrated from Okinawa and found fertile ground in Japan, everything changed. Linked to its Okinawan source, anchored by the old teachers and centuries of tradition, it remained, at least in intent, a fighting art with applications. Once unhinged from those roots, it emerged as whatever someone imagined - a sport, a capitalist's dream, a political platform, a movie.


            When a boat breaks loose of its mooring, it drifts in whatever direction the currents lead. Such was karate outside of Okinawa. With no seniors around, with no heritage to which to be true, it drifted, and the inevitable shore on which it ran aground was...sports.

Funakoshi Gigo



            The first Okinawan to introduce karate to Japan was Funakoshi Gichin. He was also one of the first to significantly alter the art. He and his son Gigo made many of the innovations that eventually became modern Shotokan - the wider stances, the exaggerated side kicks. Gigo died at the end of the war years, Funakoshi died in 1957. His student Nakayama Masatoshi continued to innovate and is probably the person most responsible for turning Funakoshi's Okinawan karate into the Japan Karate Association sport vehicle.  


Funakoshi, Gigo and/or Nakayama created kata like Unsu (from Mabuni's original version) and Empi (from the old Shorin version of Wanshu). Nakayama's goal was to create routines that would be sport applicable - more athletic in nature (than martial).        




Click  HERE to read the rest of the article                


To contact Robert Hunt  






Randy D. Danielsen, PhD, PA-C, FAAPA

Dean & Professor, Arizona School of Health Science, A.T. Still University

Medical Director, USA Karate Arizona ASO



More than 6 million men, women, and children in the United States participate in karate. This martial art is known to improve social skills, discipline, and respect. It is also known to improve mental alertness, self-confidence, and enhance physical fitness.


Dr. Randy Danielsen

While karate is relatively safe, injuries can happen because there is physical contact between opponents. The most frequent injuries in kumite are to the extremities, the abdomen, and the head-in that order. The good news is that severe injuries are rare. In this segment I would like to discuss how to recognize and decrease the risk of concussions, a subset of traumatic brain injury or TBI.


TBI can occur in kumite if the participant (karateka) falls and strikes their head or by any direct blow to the head or an indirect blow elsewhere in the body that transmits an impulse to the head. A TBI is any injury to the brain that disrupts normal brain function on a temporary or permanent basis.


To read the rest of this article click HERE 



Sports Psychology

by Dr. Sterk
Dr. Sam Sterk

This is the first of several articles to help you improve your Karate Performance using Mental Preparation.


In college, I took two years of Japanese Karate and began to appreciate the mental aspects of the sport. Later, I continued my Martial Arts training which eventually earned me a fifth Dan. In 1983, I was presented an award, by the NY Institute of Martial Arts for, "Pioneering efforts in understanding how the mind plays an important role in martial arts training and in competitions."  


Much has been written about how elite athlete who used mental preparation techniques performed much better than athletes who were not mentally trained for competition. I have a number of questions for you to help you look at your own performance in Martial Arts.


To read the rest of this article click   HERE 



Martial Art Humor

We all need a little humor in our life.  If you have a joke, send it in.

                            Zen Stories 


A Useless Life       

 A farmer got so old that he couldn't work the fields anymore. So he would spend the day just sitting on the porch. His son, still working the farm, would look up from time to time and see his father sitting there. "He's of no use any more," the son thought to himself, "he doesn't do anything!" One day the son got so frustrated by this, that he built a wood coffin, dragged it over to the porch, and told his father to get in. Without saying anything, the father climbed inside. After closing the lid, the son dragged the coffin to the edge of the farm where there was a high cliff. As he approached the drop, he heard a light tapping on the lid from inside the coffin. He opened it up. Still lying there peacefully, the father looked up at his son. "I know you are going to throw me over the cliff, but before you do, may I suggest something?" "What is it?" replied the son. "Throw me over the cliff, if you like," said the father, "but save this good wood coffin. Your children might need to use it."


We all need a little Zen in our Lives. If you have a story, please send it in.


          Wado Seminars
             and Events

Wado Pentecost Seminar 2015
May 23-25, 2015
Shuzo Imai
Sensei Shuzo Imai
Berlin-Kruezberg, Germany

Shuzo Imai, 8th dan Germany
Takamasa Arakawa, 6th danJKF Wado-Kai Japan
Bernd Alscher, 6th dan Wado Ryu
Christina Gutz, 6th dan Wado Ryu

Detail Flier
Wado Agenda
by Rob van Leeuwen

Info on other International Wado Events 


WIKF Wado Ryu Karate Seminars with Sensei Wicks WIKF  




All courses are open to Wado practitioners (unless stated) and will include traditional Wado Techniques including- OHYO, KIHON GUMITE, TANTO & TACHI DORI, (KNIFE &SWORD DEFENCE) IDORI (KNEELING DEFENCE) AND KATA

Jon Wicks
Sensei Wicks





Click HERE for the 2015 Schedule January to July 


 Other Seminars and Events

48th International Summer Camp 

July 9-12, 2015

Arnhem, The Netherlands
National Sportcentre Papendal 

Event details click



        5/9  42 Annual Riverside Karate Championships Kevin Warner
               Riverside, CA                  951-217-4986

         5/16     SC Open                   info@carolinakarate.net
                    Greenville, SC            864.277.2008

       5/30   Tenn State Championship and
                     USA National Qualifier
                      Jo Valdez   fightingspiritkarate@comcast.net


      6/30-7/4 AAU Nationals           aaukarate.org
                    Raleigh Convention Center, Raleigh, N.C. 
      7/15-19  USA Karate Nationals
                   Ft. Lauderdale, Fl.      usankf.org  


       8/15            Wado Kai Karate-Do World Cup
                            Nagoya, Japan

      12/26-1/5 2016    The 13th Pan American Maccabi Games
                                Santiago, Chile
                                Dr. Sternberg      skusajka@aol.com
                                Caren Lesser       lesserc@bellsouth.net