The students did very well. Most notably, Will Brook was graded to Shodan (1st Dan) in Kyokushin. Congratulations, Sempai Will!
Shihan Rick hosted a dinner at his house for the visitors from upstate, Queensland and the KIMAA seniors. After dinner, Sensei Paul Finnerty presented Shihan Howard and Shihan Rick an overdue memento – a photo book of highlights from the KIMAA Japan Group Tour in January 2017, a token of thanks from all other members of the group for the two Shihans’ organisation and leadership.
Kobudo practice took place the next day at Annangrove Dojo. The class focused on Bo, Sai and Kama.
Members of Turramurra and Annangrove dojos competed in the Australian Kyokushin Karate Association’s New South Wales State Championships on Sunday June 25th, hosted by Hanshi John Taylor (9th Dan).
Sensei Ben Ng and Sempai Alex Lloyd competed in the Men’s Open Middle Weight division. Sensei Ben moved around his opponent well and got some good kicks in, but the judges favoured the other fighter’s aggression and control. Sempai Alex fended off a barrage of fast head kicks from his opponent, but ultimately lost the bout to well-placed roundhouse kicks on his ribs and thigh.
Sempai Josh Darley fought in the Male 10-12 Lightweight Padded division. Sempai Josh used his calm, controlled techniques to keep his first two opponents moving all over the matts. He made the semi-finals of his division and placed Equal Third. It was a valiant effort by the young Shodan.
Sempai Josh waits for his fight
Sensei James coaches Sempai Josh
Sempai Josh wins 3rd Place
Awarded by Hanshi John Taylor
Bernard Wilson competed in the Male 13-15 Heavyweight Padded division. Bernard dominated in the bout, fighting with great aggression and movement. James Parasyn, of the Male 10-12 Middleweight Padded division, showed great technique and commitment.
Jasper Choi, fighting in the Male 16 & 17 Lightweight division, went hard and never gave up, despite some hard knocks. Turramurra’s 9th Kyu fighter Thomas Crossman, competing in the Male 5th Kyu and Under Lightweight group, entered his first ever tournament with enthusiasm and guts, determined to keep going despite fighting a much more experienced 5th Kyu.
Bernard Wilson gets ready
Sensei Ben Ng
Sempai Alex Lloyd
Tom Crossman and Sensei James Sidwell
Eric Wright of Annangrove Dojo fought fantastically in his first tournament. He fought up a division, in the Male 16 & 17 Lightweight division, and made it through to the final. He finished second in a close fight. Congratulations on your hard work, Eric!
Elia Parsanejad of Turramurra Dojo faced up to her first tournament in a while, competing in the Female 16 & 17 division. Elia remained calm and used a relentless attack and forward momentum to control her fights, with some good kicks thrown in. Elia did KIMAA proud and took First Place in the division. Congratulations, Elia!
A great effort was made by all who competed, both in the lead-up to the tournament and on the day. Congratulations go especially to Elia, Eric and Sempai Josh for their placements.
All KIMAA fighters performed excellently, especially those for whom it was their first tournament.
Sempai Angus’s first round went to an extension in the adult heavy weight. It was an exhausting bout but he pushed through, using his strength and low kicks to win the extension. He came second after taking a roundhouse kick to the front of the head in the final. Sempai Josh and Cody fought off for first and second place in the boys 11-13 years under 40kg. Cody had taken an unfortunate hit to the throat but fought well despite the injury. Sempai Josh used his kicks to win the fight.
Sempai Victor, in the cadet heavy weight division, fought a competitor over 20kg heavier than him. He faced up and stood his ground valiantly despite the weight difference. Jasper’s first fight saw him take several illegal techniques to the throat, but he pushed on and displayed the spirit of Kyokushin throughout the bout.
It was Ethan and Andrew’s first tournament. Ethan fought Sempai Victor and displayed good control and confidence. Andrew stood bravely to his much heavier opponent, and gave it his all.
Everyone walked away with a placement. Congratulations to everyone for their efforts:
Sempai Angus – Adult Heavy Weight (Open) – Second
Sempai Josh – Boys 11-13 Years under 40kg – First
Sempai Victor – Cadet Heavy Weight – Second
Jasper – Boys 13-16 Years over 58kg – Second
Cody – Boys 11-13 Years under 40kg – Second
Ethan – Cadet Heavy Weight – Third
Andrew – Adult Heavy Weight (Intermediate) – Third
The KIMAA Japan Group Tour 2017 took place in January. The primary purpose of the trip was to train with Sensei Hokama and Shihan Ken in Okinawa, as well as attend the World Kyokushin Tournament. The karateka that formed the tour group included:
The tour began on January 7th where the bulk of the group, led by Shihan Rick, departed Sydney for Tokyo. The first component of the tour was a sightseeing trip on the mainland, for which Sensei Mark Shelmerdine, Sensei James and Sensei Jon brought their families along. Sensei Paul and Sempai Trish met up with the rest of the group in Tokyo, as they had been travelling in Japan already.
The group threw themselves into the wonders of Japan quickly, spending their time in Tokyo at the Japanese Sword Museum, temple of the 47 Ronin, the fish markets, the Yushukan, the Imperial Palace Gardens, Disneyland and Sumo at the Budokan.
Two important Kyokushin sites were also visited during the group’s time in Tokyo: the memorial Shrine for Sosai Mas Oyama at Mt Mitsumine, and Sosai’s grave in Gokokuji.
The group continued their travels around the country, staying in Yudanaka, Nagano and Kyoto. Everyone enjoyed staying in the Ryokan hotel in Yudanaka and seeing the snow monkeys. Sensei Paul, Sensei James and Sensei Jon also went skiing, where Sensei James really shined!
The group met with Shihan Howard and his wife Masumi in Kyoto on January 16th – bringing the whole group to a total of 19 people.
KIMAA at a Ryokan hotel in Yudanaka
Snow monkeys in Yudanaka
Paul, Jon and James skiing
KIMAA at Matsumoto Castle
Kinkakuji in the snow
Paul, Alex and Mark at Kiyomizudera
On January 19th, the karate members of the tour group set off for Okinawa. The families returned to Australia while Masumi remained in Kyoto to spend time with her mother.
The next two days comprised training at Sensei’s dojo with Sensei Hokama and Shihan Ken. The focus was on pressure points, breaks, takedowns, self-defence, kata bunkai and Kobudo. There was lots of partner work involved, and Sensei Jon Ellis performed a board break (tameshiwari) as a part of training.
The Kobudo team performed a Jo kata to Sensei Hokama. Sempai Alex demonstrated bunkai for the kata. The standard of the group’s kata and bunkai greatly impressed Sensei Hokama. Sensei and Shihan Ken then ran the team through other possible defence manoeuvres with a Jo.
Tony Kuo, a student from Turramurra Dojo, joined the tour briefly at the invitation of Shihan Howard. He participated in all the training at Sensei Hokama’s dojo.
Shihan Howard Lipman
Sensei Tetsuhiro Hokama
Shihan Ken Ogura
The final event attended by the tour group was the Kyokushin Union’s 4th World Tournament. Fighters from all around the globe were competing, including from Australia. KIMAA caught up with Shihan Trevor Field (7th Dan) from Brisbane, who was the tournament’s Chief Arbiter. The tournament was hosted by Shihan Yasuhiro Shichinohe (7th Dan). KIMAA members trained with Shihan Shichinohe in the 2013 tour, and Sensei Don Cheong and Sempai James Campbell fought in his 2015 Okinawa tournament.
Shihan Howard and Sensei Hokama were invited by Shihan Shichinohe to sit at the official table. The rest of the group, along with Shihan Ken, enjoyed front row seats.
The tournament was two full days, primarily focused on full contact knockdown fights. There were three divisions: Men’s Open, Women’s Open and Women’s Lightweight. Some demonstrations were also made, including Shihan Shichinohe performing an ice break.
The tour group flew back to Australia after the weekend, arriving home on the morning of Tuesday January 24th.
The KIMAA Japan Group Tour was a fantastic success. The sightseeing was enjoyed by all, the World Tournament was a fantastic spectacle, and the opportunity to once again train with such knowledgeable and skilled martial artists as Sensei Hokama and Shihan Ken was special as always. Thanks go to Shihan Howard and Shihan Rick for organising and leading the tour.
The first session of the seminar was held on Friday night October 30th, at Shihan Howard Lipman’s (8th Dan Kyokushin, 7th Dan Kobudo) Turramurra Dojo. The class was focused on self-defence against an armed assailant, specifically against a hand gun, and later a knife. Ray of Dynamic Defence, a Krav Maga organisation, was the guest instructor at Shihan Lipman’s invitation.
After a warm-up and a fitness session, Ray ran the class through various disarming drills that focused on the principles of defence against an assailant wielding a pistol. After going through the basics of gun work, the class turned to knife defence.
Ray’s class was enjoyed by all present. While the karateka only had time to learn the elementary steps of these drills, they got a great sample of the defence skills being taught. KIMAA hopes to have a class with him again in the future.
After the class, a group dinner was enjoyed at Noodle City in Gordon.
The seminar began with basic training, followed by sanbon kumite (or ‘three-step sparring’). The sanbon kumite gradually increased in intensity, using takedowns and counters from bunkai to develop more advanced defensive manoeuvres.
This Saturday session included some of the more senior grades from Knox Karate.
The training progressed until lunch, with seniors challenged to come up with their own self-defence combinations while working with a partner.
After a BBQ lunch, cooked by Sensei Mark McFadden and prepared by Shihan Cunningham’s wife, Kirsti, the seminar moved on to tameshiwari (board breaking).
Kyu grades performed single, double and triple board breaks on wood placed on besser blocks, depending on their specific grading requirements.
Sempai Ben Ng and Sempai Don Cheong performed two multi-breaks (breaking four handheld boards with four consecutive techniques) as part of their grading syllabus. Sempai Mark Long and James Ruprai also performed a multi-break. Sempai Wally Gray then showed the younger generation how it’s done by breaking four boards at once with seiken (forefist) and shuto (knife hand) techniques.
Saturday’s training finished with fitness and fight training. Shihan Cunningham hosted a dinner for senior grades and the guests from other dojos at his house after training.
The senior grading began at 9am on the Sunday morning. Sensei Peter Olive (4th Dan Kyokushin, 1st Dan Kobudo) led the grading while Shihan Lipman and Shihan Cunningham assessed the performance of the students.
After the basics segment of the grading was completed, the karateka student body was broken up into groups. Those grading remained in the dojo, while Yudansha and Kyu grades not being graded went outside to do belt-specific training.
Sensei Mark McFadden, Sensei Jon, Sempai Rob, Sempai Mark Long (2nd Dan Kyokushin), Sempai James Campbell (2nd Dan Kyokushin, 2nd Dan Kobudo) and Sempai Alex Lloyd (2nd Dan Kyokushin, 1st Dan Kobudo) revised black belt katas, including Seipai, Okinawan Seipai and Sushi Ho.
The senior grading continued inside with advanced techniques, moving through stances, kata, bunkai, and fitness. The senior Kyu grades and black belts attempting the grading were Sempai Ben Ng, Sempai Don Cheong, Sempai Wally Gray, Josh Darley, Victor Sweeney, Patricia Tan and Jermaine Downs.
Finally, the grading culminated with kumite (sparring). It was the longest part of the morning for those grading, with Josh and Victor completing 20 fights to meet their syllabus requirements.
Congratulations to all those who participated in the grading. Belts and certificates will be awarded to students by their instructors over the coming weeks. Extra special congratulations to our newly promoted black belts: Sensei Ben Ng (3rd Dan Kyokushin), Sensei Don Cheong (3rd Dan Kyokushin) and Sempai Wally Gray (2nd Dan Kyokushin).
The weekend did not end after the grading, however. After another lunch prepared by Kirsti, students were broken up into groups based on their Kobudo experience for weapons training. Bo, Sai, Eeku and Arnis (Escrima Sticks) were covered for the remainder of the afternoon.
It was a tiring but successful weekend. It is always a productive and worthwhile exercise to bring all the dojos together: students get to train with karateka outside their own dojo, and all get to check that their techniques are matching the required KIMAA standard. Thanks to Sempai Alex Lloyd and Jonathan Lee for the photography and videos. Special thanks to everyone who travelled to Sydney for the occasion and, as always, to Shihan Howard Lipman and Shihan Rick Cunningham for organising the weekend.
Round 1 got underway promptly at 10 am. Aaryan Sahukhan and James Parasyn in the ‘Boys 11-13 years under 40kg’ division were up first. It was Aaryan’s first tournament. He showed great spirit, but his more experienced opponent won the match. James used his high kicks to keep his opponent away, scoring points quickly and progressing to Round 2.
Next up was the ‘Men’s Open Middle Weight’ division. Sempai Alex won his fight with aggression and continuous movement. He moved to Round 2, where Sempai Ben and Sempai Don were waiting after both having a bye. The younger years were back to the fighting mats again.
Bernard Wilson, ‘Boys 11-13 years 40-45kg’, held his own against a young black belt from another dojo, but the more advanced fighter won the bout. Next was Kasra Parsanejad, ‘Boys 11-13 years over 45kg’. Kasra had a great first fight, using his height and long legs to overpower his opponent with numerous head kicks.
Andy Kuo of ‘Men’s Novice Heavy Weight’ followed next. Andy copped some heavy hits from his opponent but kept pushing through, winning the round, after two extensions, with gusto. Jasper Choi, ‘Boys 14-15 years 50-57kg’, fought after Andy. Jasper displayed great energy, narrowly losing but still showing the right aggression and pace that a young Kyokushin fighter should have.
Round 2 was the round of extensions and determination. James Parasyn fought hard, narrowly losing to his black belt opponent. His fight went to one extension before the judges could determine a winner, however.
Sempai Don entered Round 2 after his bye, quickly overpowering his opponent. Don used his strong leg techniques and relentless chasing to out-muscle his opponent, earning his place in the Finals for the ‘Men’s Open Middle Weight’ division.
After his win in Round 1, Sempai Alex came up against Sempai Ben, who’d had a bye. The two exchanged many blows: Ben’s trademark strong side and thigh kicks against Alex’s punching barrage and uppercuts. It was a close fight, but Ben’s blocking and fast leg techniques ultimately prevailed. After two exhausting two-minute extensions, the judges finally declared a winner, giving the fight to Sempai Ben.
Kasra fronted up to his second fight in the ‘Boys 11-13 years over 45kg’ division. Kasra again used his height and kicks techniques to great effectiveness, giving him another win.
The final round of fights saw the placement play-offs and finals. Sempai Alex was up first against the opponent Sempai Don and beaten in Round 2. Alex used his aggression and strength to overpower his opponent. The referee awarded Alex the match after he scored two waza-ari, securing Alex as Third Place in the ‘Men’s Open Middle Weight’ division.
Elia Parsanejad had her first fight of the day in the final of the ‘Girls 14-15 years over 55kg’ division. Elia had energy and aggression, dominating much of the fight. However, despite her grit and resilience, her opponent won the bout due to scoring waza-ari from well-timed techniques.
Following Elia’s fight was the big event, the final for the ‘Men’s Open Middle Weight’ between Sempai Ben and Sempai Don. Sempai Ben started the fight a bit more tired than Sempai Don after his longer session in Round 2, but both competitors showed nothing but strong resolve and Kyokushin fighting spirit. The two went punch-for-punch, leading to a two-minute extension. Both sides give it their all in the extension, but ultimately Sempai Don’s leg techniques had more power. The fight went to Sempai Don.
The ‘Boys 14-15 years 50-57kg’ division continued in a round robin. Christian Girdham and Jasper Choi both had losses in this division, but faced each other as part of the play-offs. Jasper moved around a lot but Christian’s height gave him the advantage he needed, taking the win. (A video of this fight is not available.)
KIMAA’s last fight in the tournament was Andy Kuo in the ‘Men’s Novice Heavy Weight’. It was a long, hard fight with an extension. Andy took a hit to the groin and the jaw. His opponent won the fight, despite the penalty against him, but Andy couldn’t have done KIMAA any prouder.
Most of the fighters won placements at the end of the day. These included:
Men’s Open Middle Weight
Sempai Don Cheong – 1st
Sempai Ben Ng – 2nd
Sempai Alex Lloyd – 3rd
Men’s Novice Heavy Weight
Andy Kuo – 2nd
Girls 14-15 years over 55kg
Elia Parsanejad – 2nd
Boys 14-15 years 50-57kg
Christian Girdham – 2nd
Jasper Choi – 3rd
Boys 11-13 years over 45kg
Kasra Parsanejad – 1st
Boys 11-13 years 40-45kg
Bernard Wilson – 2nd
Boys 11-13 years under 40kg
James Parasyn – equal 3rd
Congratulations to everyone involved. Both first-time fighters and the more experienced combatants all displayed great determination and attitude, regardless of the strength and experience of their opponents. Shihan Lipman was very proud of all involved. Having KIMAA take so many placements, including the top three of the ‘Men’s Open Middle Weight’, was an extra special reward for all the hard effort put in by students and instructors alike.
Thanks again to Shihan Lipman, Shihan Cunningham and Sensei James for the coaching support, both on the day and in all the months of training prior.
KIMAA’s next big event will be the October/November Seminar & Grading.