October 20, 2008

Alma mater - Tokai University

On October 20, John paid a visit to Tokai University Shorinji Kempo Branch.

It was an especially interesting trip since John had practiced Shorinji Kempo there in the summer of 1985 when he was an exchange student at Tokai University School of Medicine and hadn't had a chance to train there since.

Hiate sensei (Seihanshi, 7th dan) has been the Branch Master at Tokai University for over 35 years and the members there reflect his high standards.

Much of the focus in the class was on preparing for examinations or the All-Japan Taikai in November.

John was very fortunate to spend time reviewing techniques one-on-one with Hiate sensei and then practicing kumiembu with Akiba kenshi (Chukenshi, 3rd dan).

Despite the long gap since the last training session at Tokai U., the experience was very familiar - enthusiastic kenshi, lots of teamwork in running the dojo, the close juxtaposition with other student clubs and high level embu with a lot of ippon se nage!

I would like to thank Hiate sensei and the members of Tokai University Branch for allowing me to relive my youth!


October 19, 2008

Kanagawa Reunion

Thanks to Hiate sensei (Atsugi Doin), John McCulloch of Toronto Branch has been fortunate to enjoy close ties to the Kanagawa Shorinji Kempo Federation since 1985, especially Branches in or near Atsugi City.

Dinner at a "guts" restaurant: L to R Hiate sensei, John, Matsui kenshi, Nakamura sensei, Hayashi sensei

During his recent visit to Japan, John was kindly hosted by Hiate sensei and his family and wishes to thank them very much for five star treatment received and for taking time from busy schedules to provide such a great experience!

During the visit there were occasions to meet with great friends including Nakamura sensei, Hayashi sensei, Morohoshi sensei, Negishi sensei, Kuramoto kenshi, Yamazaki "fireman" kenshi and Akiba kenshi - most of whom have visited Toronto Branch in the past.

L to R: John, Morohoshi sensei, Yamazaki Fireman

Iro iro domo arigato gozaimashita!


October 17, 2008

Atsugi Minami Doin

Morohoshi sensei at the entrance of his private dojo

On the evening of October 17, 2008, Toronto Branch Master John McCulloch had the great pleasure of training at Atsugi Minami Doin in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan.

Morohoshi sensei (Seihanshi, 7th dan), the Atsugi Minami Doin-cho, have known each other since 1985 and have visited each other's dojo several times. This visit was a great chance to renew our friendship and train together once again.

Breaking balance without force

The class largely focused on ways of performing juho technique without use of power - a fairly advanced approach. The time flew by (as did we!).

I am very grateful to Morohoshi sensei and the kenshi of Atsugi Minami Doin for sharing their knowledge. Also, I'd like to thank the Morohoshi family for their kindness and hospitality during my stay.