September news


Sorry – I made a mistake in the last newsletter. The grading date will be Wednesday 24th September. Grading tests are $25 per person, payable before the test. Please bring your grading syllabus. 

Juniors will start at 6pm, but please come early if possible. I will be there from 5pm. I hope to start the senior grading test at 7pm, but please be prepared for some delay. Please note that regular climages-3asses will not be held due to the grading, but please come along even if you are not testing. Not only will it be good practice, you will be helping your club-mates out.

Karate-bu students will have a grading test from 12:40 on Saturday 27th September.


If you are unsure of anything in your grading syllabus, please be proactive and ask me – or a higher belt – to help you learn it. Much of the grading syllabus is also now available on video if you bring me a USB. Good luck with your preparation!

AnniversaryHimeji Gardens

Lets get together on Saturday 27th September at 3pm at Himeji Gardens for a picnic to celebrate the 3rd anniversary of Sobukan! These annual Himeji Gardens picnics are becoming a bit of a tradition, and the gardens themselves are beautiful. Please bring something to share. There is a new Japanese izakaya in Hyde Park I would love to go to afterwards if we have a few takers.


Australian Kudo Championship

Kudos to Raghu, who travelled to Gold Coast to compete in the Australian Kudo Championship. It was a late decision, with only a few weeks preparation, which exemplifies the courage of the Chennai Warrior. Raghu showed great commitment and courage travelling all the way to the Gold Coast to fight in one of the world’s toughest and most complete combat sports – and achieved his goal of gain experience against tough competition. He was also graded to 7th kyu in Kudo/Daidojuku. We are proud of you Raghu!! The head of Kudo Australia will be holding a seminar and grading in Adelaide over the weekend November 29-30, more information to come on that soon.



A brand new 3-day Asian festival hits Adelaide in this year, and it is complete with Sumo wrestlers and all! We had such a great turnout and demonstration at the Adelaide Sports and Fitness Expo in May, and I hope we can do something very similar for AsiaFest. Please confirm your availability via email so that I can start planning.


10557282_295010750677495_8931970354894632900_nWhere:  AsiaFest – Rymill Park Adelaide

When:  Sunday 5th October

Who:   All Sobukan and 空手部 students

What:  Kata, kumite, tegumi, quadrant, skit

Fight for Life

Come and train with SA’s elite instructors and raise money for cancer research – sounds like a win-win to me! Last year was a lot of fun and for a very good cause. My own father is battling cancer, so this has special significance to me. Your support will be highly appreciated.

Important dates

Wednesday September 24 grading test

Saturday September 27 – 3rd anniversary (and karate-bu grading test)

Sunday October 5 – demonstration at AsiaFest

Sunday October 13 – Fight for Life training day raising funds for cancer research

Saturday November 29 – Kudo seminar

Sunday November 30 – Kudo grading



Susumazaru mono wa kanarazu shirizoki, shirizokazaru mono wa kanarazu susumu.

Those who do not progress will undeniably regress. Those who do not regress will undeniably progress.

One of Japan’s greatest educators, Fukuzawa Yukichi, advises that there is no such thing as maintaining level. You are either getting better, or worse. In which direction are you heading?

Technical lesson – Rear Naked Choke (RNC)

This is the king of the chokes. Called Hadaka Jime in Japanese and Mata Leao in Portugese, this easy choke will put anyone to sleep. Junior students are not taught this technique, and certainly don’t not try it at home. Also, please do not allow your children to do a internet search for Rear Naked Choke – that is inappropriate for many reasons.

Putting someone to sleep is the only way to guarantee that an attacker cannot continue with a dangerous violent attack, and to the best of my knowledge there are only 3 non-chemical methods of achieving this:

  1. Knock out
  2. Choke out
  3. Play Brahms Lullaby

There are several categories of chokes:

  • Blood chokes – prevent blood flow to the brain
  • Air chokes – prevent air flow to the lungs
  • Gi choke – garment used to constrict the neck
  • Naked chokes – no garment required to constrict the neck

The RNC is a naked blood choke applied from the rear of the opponent. Blood chokes are much safer and faster than air chokes. The lack of a requirement to use a garment means that this choke can be applied in more scenarios than a gi choke. As this is applied from behind the opponent, it is much safer than if you were standing in front of a violent attacker. There are many variations, and today I will explain the ‘sleeper hold’ method, which is arguably the most effective.

The biggest challenge to apply the RNC effectively is getting behind your opponent. Arm-drags, duck-unders and all sorts of wrestling moves are used to achieve this. Once you get there, you need to be slightly higher than your opponent. If you are on both on the ground, this is easy. If you are standing, a stomp to the back of the knee will achieve the desire result. Your armpits need to be at the height of the top of the opponent’s shoulders. 

Wrap your right arm around the opponent’s neck tightly with your elbow directly in front of the opponent’s chin. Place your right hand on your left bicep, and your left elbow in front of the opponent’s left shoulder. Karate-chop your left hand to the back of the opponent’s neck, with the back of your hand against the back of their head. Lock your chin down on top of your left hand. The choke should already be tight at this point, and all that is left is to constrict. Breathe out and collapse your body towards your opponent, removing all space between your bodies and squeezing your elbows together. Then take a deep breath, continuing to constrict your opponent’s neck. It should take no more than a second for them to lose consciousness if you do not let go, so please take great caution in practice and be ready to release immediately when your partner taps or makes gurgly noises. 

Again, I repeat: This technique is not for children and should not be practiced without great care and supervision!

Video tutorial by Clark Gracie:

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