March newsletter

Important dates in 2015

Date Time Event
Sat February 28 10am – 3pm Kudo seminar (no regular classes, 空手部も休みとなっています)
Sun March 1 10am – 3pm Kudo grading
Sat March 7 12:40 – 1:30 体育館が使用できないため、稽古は音楽室で行います。
Sat April 18 All day No classes due to family holiday

April 25 – 26

All day Gasshuku training camp (TBC) – does anyone know any great locations?
Sun May 3 All day IBF Training Day
Sun May 10 TBC UFC in Adelaide
Sun May 17 All day Adelaide Sport and Fitness Expo – Kudo competition (TBC)
July TBC Grading (TBC)

Fire in the kitchen

On Wednesday 18th February, we had an incident at the dojo. It seems that someone inadvertently turned on the stove with a plastic tub on top. The plastic melted and noxious fumes filled the dojo. Please take care when using the kitchen facilities, it was only due to Sean noticing the smoke that a more serious incident was avoided – Thanks Sean!!


Kudo seminar and grading with Paul Cale

images-15Bookings and payment required now!

Saturday 28 February – Kudo / Daidojuku seminar

Sunday 1 March – Kudo / Daidojuku grading

Please note that there will be no regular classes at Sobukan or Karate-bu on Saturday 28th February due to the seminar.

Kudo grading and seminar poster

What is Kudo?

Kudo is a Japanese gi-based Mixed Martial Art and a perfect vehicle for established martial artists to test and further develop all-round combative skills in a safer environment than ‘naked’ MMA. Kudo retains traditional budo values and combines strong kicks, punches, knees, elbows and head-butts with dynamic throws and slick submissions.

Protective equipment bridges the gap between safety and real fighting. It is arguably the world’s most explosive combat sport. This seminar is for ages 12 and over.

Saturday 28 February, 10:00 – 15:00 will be a Kudo seminar with the head of Kudo Australia, Paul Cale. Cost $60

Sunday 1 March , 10:00 – 15:00 will be SA’s first Daido Juku Kudo grading with Paul Cale shibucho! Cost $105, including Kudo Australia membership, value $40.

Participate in both days for a discounted cost of $150.


IMAG0306Yagai geiko

Recently a small group of Sobukan members interested in entering Kudo/BJJ/Karate/MMA competition have been meeting on Sunday mornings for conditioning training. This high-intensity training will test you, and we have enjoyed some lovely outdoor weather! We have been meeting at Goodwood Oval, but future sessions may be held anywhere: the beach, the military obstacle course, etc. If you are interested, please let me know.

Training camp

I am planning to hold a gasshuku training camp for all members, children, adults and families. We would start Saturday morning and stay until Sunday afternoon with training sessions throughout the days. Unfortunately the venue I had tentatively booked rejected our booking due to a 2-night minimum policy. Do you have any ideas for a good location? I have had a few suggestions, including our dojo, or Kensei’s dojo at Moana beach, but if you know somewhere good, please let me know!

Below is a draft schedule for the gasshuku.

Time Saturday   Sunday
7 Newaza (ground techniques)
8 Breakfast
9 Meet and greet Kata (bassai dai)
10 Tegumi and keriwaza (striking) Quadrant (striking defence)
11 Newaza (ground techniques) Kansetsu waza (locking techniques)
12 Lunch and cultural activities (Japanese lesson, calligraphy?) Lunch and cultural activities (Japanese lesson, calligraphy?)
2 Kudo combinations and counters Iaijutsu (swords)
3 Amok (knife fighting) Shimewaza (chokes)
4 Nagewaza (throws) Jujutsu (traditional Japanese)
5 Kata (Heian kata) Kata (naifanchin)
6 Jujutsu (traditional Japanese)
Late Bonfire and BBQ, bon-odori, flute


Feel free to wear Sobukan t-shirts to training when it is too hot to wear a dogi, or when we have beach or outdoor training sessions.






I may have introduced this one to you before. Sessatakuma is a dojo mate who you constantly compete with to improve. You will brainstorm strategies to beat each other and help each other drill new techniques. By virtue of your (often informal) arrangement, you motivate each other to train more regularly, more intensively and more intelligently. The result is mutually beneficial and you both advance at a faster rate than you would by yourself. Do you have a Sessatakuma?

Technical lesson – Levels of competence

Don’t practice until you get it right, practice until you can’t get it wrong!

There are four generally accepted stages of competence, and these roughly coincide with Shuhari, a Japanese concept that we often discuss. The stages are:

  1. Unconscious incompetence – I don’t know what I don’t know
  2. Conscious incompetence – I know what I don’t know
  3. Conscious competence – I can do it when I concentrate
  4. Unconscious competence – It is second nature

When most students enter the dojo for the first time, they bring a general notion of wanting to learn to defend themselves, wanting to improve their health and fitness and thinking that martial arts are pretty cool. The recent popularity of MMA and the accessibility of Youtube has has educated the general public about violence somewhat, but most people have little first-hand experience. The first lesson is to learn what they need to defend themselves against. Once they learn the concept of Habitual Acts of Physical Violence (HAPVs), the four stages of self defence (avoid, escape, negotiate, fight/physical defence) and the four exit points from a violent conflict (get out, knock out, choke out, arrest), they are ready to graduate to stage two. This correlates roughly with a yellow belt. images-11

Your confidence may actually dip around yellow/orange belt as you feel overwhelmed by the amount there is to learn. This milestone notifies that you have reached stage two, conscious incompetence. You are then exposed to a great range of techniques including bunches of punches, open hand strikes, elbows, headbutts, knees and kicks. You learn to clinch and dozens of throws, sweeps and wrestling takedowns. You are introduced to the positions, transitions and submissions on the ground. You also get an opportunity to experience traditional jujutsu locks and arresting movements. And you learn how to defend against knives, guns, sticks and all of the above! It all seems too much!! But gradually you build some confidence with the techniques, you know them and can do many of them in training. Unfortunately some students feel that they know enough at this stage. This happens around blue belt. Welcome to stage 3!images-9

Bruce Lee advised us not to fear the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks, but to fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times. Drill, drill, then drill some more! With practice, and plenty of repetition, you notice that techniques start to come a little easier. You now think less about the execution of the technique and more about timing, tactics and opportunities. You are countering techniques spontaneously. You still have more to learn, but you have now entered the final stage and are probably ready for your black belt test.


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