PONTESBURY RESIDENTIAL COURSE MAY 2009
Report on Residential at Pontesbury May 9th-10th 2009
It was that time of the year again when Kazokukai members converge on the little village of Pontesbury near Shrewsbury in England. Their purpose was to come and train and have fun at the annual spring course which is held in the public hall in Pontesbury every May. This years instructors were Sensei Derek Ridgway 7th Dan chief instructor to Kazokukai and Sensei Mick Bayliss 4th Dan Senior instructor to kazokukai.
The course this year was to be divided between karate and Kobudo (weapons) with sensei Mick doing the kobudo and sensei Derek doing the Karate.
After breakfast on saturday we kicked of at 9.30am with the first karate session which was to study kata Matsumora Wanshu which is an old version of Empi kata and comes from the matsubayashi style of shorin-ryu from Okinawa. Sensei Ridgway took time with everyone to make sure they had the order. Then we went on to the bunkai which was very interesting with lots of locks and takedowns, and liberal use of the knee! After a short tea break sensei Bayliss started the kobudo, he explained first how to hold the bo (6ft staff) then moved on to what is called the go-go-go. Known in English as 5-5-5 this exercise teaches you all the basics of how to use the bo and is a must if you want to know how to use the weapon properly. Later in the lesson we moved on to some basic pair work using blocks and strikes. It was now 12.30 and time for lunch everyone was starving and could smell the waft of dinner cooking in the kitchen.
After dinner we continued with the kata Matsumora Wanshu now working more on detail with attention to speed timing rythum etc for the performance. We then moved on to bunkai in more detail where Sensei Ridgway showed many ways of applying the kata on an opponant. The last session of Saturday was to be again on weapons and sensei Bayliss told us he was going to teach us the bo kata Shuji-no-kon-dai. This kata although quite short by bo kata standards was still found quite difficult by the students especially if they had only started bo training that day. Still sensei Bayliss showed great patience and by the end of the session most had got the basic order of the kata. This drew the Saturdays training to a close and everyone could now relax and grab a meal at one of the retuarants in Pontesbury and then enjoy a live band and a beer or two at the Plough, the local pub.
Sunday morning arrived very soon and after breakfast we were straight into our bo training with more work on Shiji-no-kon-Dai kata and bunkai with a partener. After a quick tea break we were again back into our karate training with sensei Ridgway. This session we were to learn another Wanshu kata called Itosu-no-Wanshu this kata comes from the Itosu group of Shito-ryu kata and is a little shorter than the Matsumora version taught the previous day. Again sensei Ridgway took time to make sure we had all got the order and then moved on to bunkai. At the end of this session we then re-capped Matsumora Wanshu to make sure we had not forgotten what we did yesterday. This brought the mornings sessions to a close, again the waft of dinner was making us all hungry.
The final session after dinner was again to be with bo and sensei Bayliss said that he was going to teach us the 10 bo pair exercises which are obviously done with a partener and are designed to get you familiar with how to use the bo in both attacking and defensive situations. Again this was really enjoyed by all although heads were being scratched as we tried to remember all 10 at the end of the lesson.
This brought this years spring camp to a close we had all had a great time and it really was a feast of information well done to both instructors for such a great weekends training.
Special note from sensei Ridgway
I would like to thank sensei Mick Bayliss for some great instruction in using the bo. His classes were really appreciated by all and i will not hesitate to book him again for the same course next year.
Special thanks goes to Lori and Claire who cooked the food all weekend.
Lastly thanks to all that attended there was a lot of information to take on board so we hope you enjoyed it and we hope to see you all again next time.