Tuesday, April 12, 2011

2011 SE Regional Championships and National Qualifying Event

This past weekend Team Meishinkan headed up north to Birmingham Alabama to compete in the 2011 USA Martial Arts Federation SE Regional Championships.  This event is always a lot of fun to attend and this year was no exception.  We had an additional ring added this year (total of 4 rings) and lots of good, high quality competitors and referees.

Alex Miladi Sensei was once again invited to oversee the event and to test the referees in attendance to ensure we all knew the rules and could apply them in the ring.

Bushnell Shihan and Mrs. B, did a great job along with Keith MacConkey Sensei who headed up staging.

Sensei Reach had his Referee class C license renewed for the year and Sensei Cassani had her Judge A license awarded to her.

Portia Fish - Gold Medal Kumite, Gold Medal Kata, and Gold Medal Kobudo.
Evelyn Largo - Gold Medal Kumite
Tainter Bundy - Gold Medal Kata, Silver Medal Kobudo
Samantha Reach - Silver Medal Kumite, Silver Medal Kata and Silver Medal Kobudo

Everyone at USA Martial Arts Florida is extremely proud of our team!  Way to go!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Camp Kangeiko 2011!

    Camp Kangeiko is developing a long and storied history - and the stories keep getting better. There was the year of the flooded tents. There was the year of Sensei Morgan and the bear. There was the year of the exploding soda cans. This year, 2011, provided its share of stories, but will be remembered best as the year of the peacocks.
     Kangeiko has been held for nine years so far, the first several were in the fall, and the later ones in the winter (it is after all 'severe WINTER training'...) We have camped in several state parks and Sensei Hanson's back yard, but seem to have settled on Riverside Retreat Center in Alva as our permanent winter home. In gratitude, Meishinkan dojo does various service projects that the camp staff request, such as brush clearing or building benches. A request this year was a bit more unusual.
    The infamous Iron Chef contest (aka Iron Gut contest) has become a highlight of Kangeiko, and was added the year after Sensei Morgan first joined us for the event. In this contest, students cook and blackbelts eat - a fine incentive for attaining that coveted black belt! The contest challenges have ranged from making dessert with beef jerky to four course meals with unknown meat, pig ears or various beef organs. The results have been memorable (and many better forgotten.) For the record, no black belts have perished yet, although many have felt that would have been a more preferrable outcome. Waiting to find out what the secret ingredient is each year keeps the anticipation high!
      As for training, each year at Kangeiko, Morgan Sensei and Reach Sensei provide instruction in multiple arts, including outdoor skills and wilderness survival. This year it was how not to catch peacocks. Yes, peacocks. As in large pesky birds that escaped from somewhere and were creating havoc for the campground. It was quickly determined that sneaking up and/or chasing them is not the most efficient method of capture. They do fly after all. After a demonstration of really good shooting by Sensei Morgan and birddogging through the brush by Sensei Chadbourn, Mike and Jason, the catching part was accomplished, and instruction proceeded to preparing and cooking wild birds, ie, pesky peacocks. Feathers flew, the birds were dressed and wrapped in foil, and slow-cooked in the newly-built, brick-lined Dakota firepit (another service project). Roasted peacock provided an interesting addition to the evening Iron Chef contest, although not the main ingredient (that was reserved for beef organs.)  Taste results on the birds were mixed, from "tasty but chewy", to "I'd rather have the cow kidneys". 
     Yes, Kangeiko 2011 was definitely a year to remember!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Breakfast with the Kringle's

Each year USA Martial Arts Florida, as part of our focus on community service, dedicate two mornings a year to the Veterans Park Recreation Center in Lehigh Acres, FL.

Each year we help them with the Easter Egg Hunt and the Breakfast with the Kringles event.

This years Breakfast with the Kringles is on Saturday, December 11, 2010.  If you are able to help out with this event please see Cassani Sensei for more information.

We need people to help setup, tear down, help with crafts and general crowd control.

Thank you for your desire to help your community!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Jarrett Shihan Seminar follow-up

What a weekend we had with Jarrett Shihan!

The seminar started Friday night with Jarrett Shihan teaching various kumite drills with a focus on using different ways to block and counter.  This was a great course especially for many of our Junior Sport Karate Athletes but it was also an ideal course for all our martial arts students.  Learning to block, evade and counter whether with a throw or a punch is crucial for survival and solid self-defense skills.

We started Satruday with training beginning at 9am.  We went straight into grappling.  Jarrett Shihan worked with the kids and adults on basic techniques such as O Soto Gari, but added a twist by throwing in one legged dual soto gari competitions and other variations.  The emphasis on kuzushi was critical in allowing us to better understand the principles of unbalancing our opponent prior to attempting any kind of throw.

During the Aikido session Shihan spent some time on what to do when kotegaeshi doesn't work as planned, weaving the movements into other techniques and essentially going where uke desires to go.  He ended with showing how to properly apply kotegaeshi so that all the weaving of techniques is ultimately unnecessary if you focus on the basics and apply proper technique.

We concluded Saturday's seminar with Black Belt Demonstrations and then a Kyu/Gup Test.  At the end Jarrett Shihan promoted Jeff Reach Sensei and Tim Morgan Sensei to 2nd Degree Black Belt in Judo and Jujitsu, Chris Fortney Sensei to 1st Dan in Judo and Jujitsu, Loren Fish to 3rd kyu purple belt in Judo and Jujitsu and Randy Herndon to 6th kyu orange belt in Judo and Jujitsu.

Sunday we started at 10am and jumped right into a 3 hour session of Iaido.  Shihan taught a new kata Naname Giri and also reviewed the Seitei Gata with all the students as well.  To finish the seminar we had Iaido testing.  Justin Chadbourn Sensei was testing for 1st kyu red belt and was suprised with a promotion to 1st Degree Black Belt in Iaido.  Randy Herndon was promoted to 7th Kyu Gold Belt as was Rick Robinson.

Overall it was an amazing weekend and our school, students and staff are all blessed to have Jarrett Shihan in our lives.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Getting ready for Jarrett Shihan

As we get ready for our annual Royal Palm Budo seminar with Roger Jarrett Shihan it reminds me of how much we have grown over the years.

As students, instructors and staff we have taken on many great challenges and have always risen to the occasion. This event will be no different! We have two O Sogi (Great Cleanings) scheduled before Jarrett Shihan arrives and we have (in typical Meishinkan fashion) rolled out the red carpet for all our out of town guests.

We have been blessed to have the Bounds Family offer up their beautiful home for our social on Saturday night and we have several students planning on testing in Judo, Jujitsu and Iaido!

I cannot wait for this event. Please be sure you get your registrations turned in this week to avoid the $25 late fee charge.