Happy New Year 2015

Happy New Year to all members!

The dojo will open again this Wednesday for the New Year, so I hope everyone is ready to start the New Year off strong and train hard.
I often talk about goals and the beginning of the year is the perfect time to do so. It is important that you all set one or two goals for your karate for the coming year. Your goal could be to decide which rank you plan to achieve by the end of the year. It could be the number of tournaments you plan to participate in. It could be a fitness goal or a weight loss goal. It could be the number of new kata you would like to learn. Maybe it is an improvement in your kumite skill. Or it could simply be a stronger front punch or higher front kick.
Whatever it is you should have a goal or two in mind (or preferably written down). If you don’t set a goal then you can be sure that your progress will be limited or at the very least slower than you had hoped.
Also remember that the many things that you learn in karate, such as discipline, increased focus and concentration, strong spirit and respect for others should also be found in your life outside the dojo. This is the sign that the true meaning of this wonderful art of karate is showing itself in everything around you.
Finally, don’t forget the two important concepts of patience and perseverance. They are crucial to your success. We often use the word “Osu” in class as a greeting or to say “yes I understand what I am being asked to do”. The two characters that are used to write “Osu” in Japanese mean patience and perseverance! Coincidence? I think not.
I wish each and every one of you a successful 2015 in every way and I hope that you are all ready to set goals and to train hard.
Osu!

Testing – June 2014

Here is the testing schedule for this month:

Saturday June 7, 2014

10:00 – 11:00am Shotokan Testing Preparation Class (All Shotokan ranks)

11:00 – 12:00pm Tournament Training

12:00 – 1:00pm Sword class

 

Wednesday June 11, 2014

5:30 – 6:00pm Tiny Tigers testing (All ranks)

6:00—7:00pm Shotokan open class (All ranks)

7:00—8:00pm Shotokan testing (Purple, Brown and Black belts)

 

Thursday June 12, 2014

5:00 – 6:00pm Junior Shotokan testing (White, Yellow, Orange & Green belts)

6:00—6:30pm Tiny Tigers testing (All ranks)

6:30—7:30pm Shotokan open class (All ranks)

 

Friday June 13, 2014

5:30—6:30pm Shotokan testing (White, Yellow, Orange & Green belts)

6:30—7:30pm Shotokan open class (Purple, Brown & Black belts)

 

Saturday June 14, 2014

10:00—11:00am Shotokan open class (All ranks)

11:00 – 12:00pm Tournament training

12:00 – 1:00pm Sword class

 

 

Testing fees are $25 for Tiny Tigers students and $30 for Shotokan students, and are payable on or before the day of the test.  If you cannot make your scheduled testing time, then please let me know in advance.

Happy New Year to all members!

Classes have resumed once again for the start of the year.  Welcome back to all members and I hope that your holiday season was a good one.

There is one change to our weekly lesson schedule and that is on Wednesday evening.  The new Wednesday evening schedule is as follows:

5:30 – 6:00pm Tiny Tigers

6:00 – 7:00pm Shotokan (white to purple belts)

7:00 – 8:15pm Shotokan (brown and black belts)

All other classes on Thursday, Friday and Saturday will remain the same.

Please click on the current lesson schedule link to see a full copy of our current lesson schedule.

Thank you.

End of Year Holiday Schedule

Wednesday November 27 – Friday November 29: Closed for Thanksgiving

Saturday November 30: Open for training

Wednesday December 4 – Saturday December 7: Final week of training BEFORE testing

Friday December 6: Sensei Paul Seminar in Las Vegas (starting at 6pm)

Saturday December 7: Las Vegas Friendship Tournament (starting at 10am)

Wednesday December 11 & Thursday December 12: Testing for Tiny Tigers and Shotokan students (please see detailed schedule on previous post)

Friday December 13 & Saturday December 14: Classes as usual

Wednesday December 18 – Saturday December 21: Classes as usual (Belt and certificate presentations in class)

Saturday December 21: Last day of training for 2013, Final Brown to Black belt testing

Wednesday December 25 – Saturday December 28: Dojo closed for Christmas holiday

Wednesday January 1 & Thursday January 2: Dojo closed for New Year

Friday January 3 & Saturday January 4: Dojo opens for 2014 – First days of training for the New Year

Saturday January 18: Tentative date for Annual Awards Presentation for Most Improved Students of 2013

Testing Schedule for December 2013

Saturday December 7, 2013

10:00 – 11:00am Shotokan Testing Preparation Class (All Shotokan ranks)

No tournament training or sword class today due to Las Vegas Friendship Tournament

 

Wednesday December 11, 2013

5:30 – 6:00pm Tiny Tigers testing (All ranks)

6:00—7:00pm Shotokan testing (White, Yellow, Orange & Green belts)

7:00—8:00pm Shotokan testing (First and Second Brown belts)

 

Thursday December 12, 2013

5:00 – 6:00pm Junior Shotokan testing (White, Yellow & Orange belts)

6:00—6:30pm Tiny Tigers testing (All ranks)

6:30—7:30pm Shotokan testing (Orange, Green, Blue & Purple belts)

 

Friday December 13, 2013

5:30—6:30pm Shotokan open class (White to Purple belts)

6:30—7:30pm Shotokan open class (Brown & Black belts)

 

Saturday December 14, 2013

10:00—11:00am Shotokan open class (All ranks)

11:00 – 12:00pm Tournament training

12:00 – 1:00pm Sword class

 

Saturday December 21, 2013

10:00—11:00am Shotokan open class (All ranks)

11:00 – 12:00pm Tournament training

12:00 – 1:00pm Shotokan testing (Final Brown to Black)

Testing fees are $25 for Tiny Tigers students and $30 for Shotokan students, and are payable on or before the day of the test.  If you cannot make your scheduled testing time, then please let me know in advance.

 

New Lesson Schedule – May 2013

Due to changes in the rank levels of our members there are some changes to the current lesson schedule.  These changes will take effect in May starting the week of May 6th.  Here is the new schedule:

Tuesday 7:30 – 8:45pm Shotokan (brown & black belts)

Wednesday 5:30 – 6:00pm Tiny Tigers (all ranks)

Wednesday 6:00 – 7:00pm Shotokan (all ranks and ages)

Thursday 5:00 – 6:00pm Junior Shotokan (white to blue belts)

Thursday 6:00 – 6:30pm Tiny Tigers (all ranks)

Thursday 6:30 – 7:45pm Shotokan (purple to black belts)

Friday 5:30 – 6:30pm Shotokan (white to purple belts)

Friday 6:30 – 7:45pm Shotokan (brown & black belts)

Saturday 10:00 – 11:00am Shotokan (all ranks and ages)

Saturday 11:00am – 12:00pm Team Training (tournament competitors only)

For a printable schedule please go to www.seishinshotokan.com/index_files/currentschedule.pdf

 

Testing Schedule – March 2013

Saturday March 9, 2013

9:30 – 10:00am Tiny Tigers testing preparation class for all ranks

10:00 – 11:00am Shotokan testing preparation class for White to Blue belts

11:00 – 12:00pm Shotokan testing preparation class for Purple and Brown belts

12:00 – 1:00pm Tournament Training

Tuesday March 12, 2013

6:30—7:30pm Shotokan open class (White to Purple belts)

7:30—8:45pm Shotokan open class (Brown & Black belts)

Wednesday March 13, 2013

5:30 – 6:00pm Tiny Tigers testing (Purple & Brown stripes)

6:00—7:00pm Junior Shotokan testing (Green & Blue belts)

7:00—8:00pm Shotokan testing (Brown belts)

Thursday March 14, 2013

5:00 – 6:00pm Junior Shotokan testing (White, Yellow & Orange belts)

6:00—6:30pm Tiny Tigers testing (White, Yellow, Orange & Green stripes)

6:30—7:30pm Shotokan open class (All ranks)

7:30 – 8:30pm Shotokan testing (Purple belts)

Friday March 15, 2013

5:30—6:30pm Shotokan testing (White, Yellow, Orange & Green belts)

6:30—7:45pm Shotokan open class (Green belt and above)

Saturday March 16, 2013

9:30—10am Tiny Tigers open class (All ranks)

10:00—11:00am Shotokan open class (Green belt and above)

11:00 – 12:00pm Tournament training

 

Testing fees are $25 for Tiny Tigers students and $30 for Shotokan students, and are payable on or before the day of the test.  If you cannot make your scheduled testing time, then please let me know in advance.

Open Letter to Dojo Members

Dear Dojo Members and Families,

I am writing this open letter to explain some recent events in my life and to ask for your cooperation and understanding.  I typically keep my personal life to myself, but I have had several absences from the dojo over the past few months due to some circumstances beyond my control but which directly affect me and my family.  I feel that I owe it to all of you, my valued members, to explain what is happening.

In November 2011, my brother-in-law John was found to have a brain tumor.  John was my only sister Nicola’s husband.  On January 3, 2012, doctors performed brain surgery on John and removed the brain tumor.  It was found to be malignant, and he was diagnosed with Stage 4 brain cancer.  He began a series of chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments which unfortunately were not successful.  By June of last year the tumor had grown back and was twice the size.  He was told to get his affairs in order.

I went to visit John and my sister Nicola in October to say my “goodbyes” during his last weeks.  While I was there, the two of them were thrilled to learn that Nicola was pregnant through an in-vitro fertilization procedure.  A couple of weeks later we were told that Nicola was expecting twins.  She and John were both overjoyed.  It was a sign of hope during a time of despair.  On November 4, 2012, John Mansfield lost his valiant battle against brain cancer.  We were all of course devastated but knew it was coming.  He was 35 years old.

As if that was not enough, the next part of the story belongs to the type of stuff that you couldn’t make up if you tried.  For the past year Nicola has been having some trouble with her hearing in her left ear and then later some facial numbness.  Several tests revealed nothing…until this January when an MRI scan unbelievably found that she had a brain tumor of her own.  The good news is that hers is benign; it is called an acoustic neuroma.  Her tumor was just over an inch in size – a large tumor.

It was hoped that her surgery could be postponed until after the birth of the twins in early June.  That was not to be as last weekend, the weekend of February 9 and 10, she was having significant headaches, dizziness and pain in her ear.  The doctor ordered her into hospital immediately.  On Thursday, February 14, 2013 (yes, Valentine’s Day) my sister Nicola underwent a seven hour surgery to remove the tumor.

The doctor was able to remove about 95% of the tumor, and the babies were kept safe throughout the surgery.  Nicola is doing as well as can be expected.  She is suffering from facial palsy on one side of her face and is having trouble closing one of her eyes.  She is also experiencing some headaches that should ease in the coming weeks.

We both lost our mother to Multiple Myeloma just over ten years ago after a seven year battle that defied all odds, and our father is in a home for late stage Alzheimer’s.  This makes me her only blood relative with any ability to help.  She, of course, has many good friends who are extremely supportive, but it is once again necessary for me to make the trip to England, as she will be released from hospital and will need 24/7 care for the first week of being home.

I leave for England this Thursday February 21st and will come back on Sunday March 3rd.  I am asking for everyone’s support and understanding over the coming weeks, as several lessons will be taught by Sensei Andrew, Sensei Brandon, my wife Erin, and other assistant instructors.  Testing is coming up soon in March, so the instructors and assistants will cover testing material in class.  I have postponed testing from the first week of March until the second week to give students one more week to prepare.  Additionally, students need to take an initiative of their own to prepare adequately.  It is always hard for me to miss class, as I take my position as Chief Instructor very seriously, but at the same time I am very thankful to have talented and competent assistant instructors to help me when needed.

Our hope as a family is to be able to all go to England this summer once the babies have been born, as Nicola will be requiring radiation at that time to complete the final stage of her brain tumor treatment.  Obviously, with the challenges of her medical condition, and having to care for two newborns as a single mother, she is going to need our support both physically and emotionally. Naturally, it is very expensive to fly in the month of June, when the babies are due, presenting a financial challenge of its own.

In the meantime, I ask for your understanding during this difficult time.  I also ask for your continued support for our dojo and for what we are trying to achieve with all of our students.

Thank you in advance.

 

Sincerely,

 

 

Paul Walker

Chief Instructor

Seishin Shotokan Karate