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JKA Europe Gasshuku in Brussels, November 2017 by Shahinaz Pelter (0 comments)

Last Weekend, Patrick and I returned to Brussels and attended the JKA Europe Gasshuku. This was our second time as we had been to the course in 2015. This particular course was inspiring and a great opportunity for us to learn from Sensei Ueki, Chief Instructor of the Japan Karate Association Headquarters and World Federation.

The main emphasis was on karate basics. Understanding the course followed by the technique, creating speed and focusing in order to execute a powerful and effective technique. Sensei Ueki has repeatedly stressed that it is very important to pay attention to how to use the fist and foot so as to turn them into effective weapons.

There was also great emphasis on the karate stances: natural stances as well as Zenkutsu-Dachi, Kokutsu-Dachi, Kiba-Dachi, Fudo-Dachi, Neko-Ashi Dachi, Sanchin-Dachi , Kosa-Dachi  and Hangetsu Dachi.

We had also a couple of hours of kumite training. The distance, the correct target as well as smooth feet movements were the main points covered.

As for kata, the main emphasis was on the main elements of performing kata: How and when to contract and expand the body, showing the contrast between the slow and fast movement and being able to relax and then focusing the power. We did Heian Shodan, Hangetsu and Jitte We have also practiced some of the kata bankai.

I have to say, that every time we attend a course in a foreign country, it makes us realise how very lucky we are to have Sensei Ohta as our JKA England Chief Instructor.  He always keeps us fully updated with any changes made by the JKA Headquarters.

At the end of the course, there was the opportunity of taking Qualification tests, providing that the JKA members have already been given written permission from their Country Chief Instructor, subject to each country regulations.

Our JKA England group did very well and we now have more D Instructors and C examiners!  I am honoured to have been given the opportunity to follow the steps of inspiring JKA lady instructors and become the First Lady Club Chief Instructor in our JKA England to gain a D Instructor International Qualification.

I have to say that, while preparing for the qualification tests, I spent long hours both training and studying. There is no doubt that it is crucial to attend our JKA England Instructors courses and to follow Sensei Ohta and the Technical Committee recommendations before attempting to apply to take any of these qualifications.

The atmosphere in the JKA Europe Gasshuku, which was attended by 22 countries, was warm and friendly. It was great to see our European JKA friends, some of whom we had not seen since 2015.  Others regularly come to England to attend our JKAE International Courses. We were particularly happy to see Sensei Sawada (7th Dan, Belgium) who is one of JKA England’s long standing friends and a regular guest instructor in our JKAE International Courses.


Patrick and I both very much enjoyed the course and we are certainly looking forward to return back to Belgium in the future.

Shahinaz Pelter



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