Kazoku Kai Xmas Bash 2011
Report on annual Xmas basho Dec 2011
The annual Kazoku Kai Xmas Basho was this year hosted by Sensei Tony Bergin at the Lowestoft Community Hall and was taught by both Sensei Derek Ridgway and Tony who was also celebrating the 20th Anniversary of his karate club. Many of the Kazoku Kai members had gathered from near and afar to celebrate together and while some couldn't train due to serious illness and injury, their thoughts were with us during the training and celebration.
Sensei Tony Bergin started the training with a friendly welcome, a thorough warm-up and then some kake waza – a series of exercises where partners in pairs push the back of their hands against each other rhythmically to “feel” their opponents movement and work on the timing to find an opening and execute a lock, throw, strike or take-down. This fluid type of training is also used in Okinawa and works the body physically as well as mentally and gives a training bridge between kihon (basics) and kumite (fighting).
Sensei Ridgway next taught the kata “Rohai Sandan” which is a nice, advanced kata from the Itosu lineage with a relatively short and simple form. The grades spanned beginners to advanced grades and the pace was set so as it was easy for beginners to pick up the kata yet interesting for the advanced grades who worked on some subtle details and feeling, Several practical bunkai sequences were later shown to accompany the training and give an insight into the workings of the kata and add more confidence to it's performance.
There was a short break after the session for several people to prepare for their grading. Some people warmed up while others opted to change into their favorite Gi. Progressing to Black and other grades, the students were put through their paces with a barrage of kihon, kata, bunkai, kumite and lock/grab/hold escape techniques before being pushed to the limit with some 2-minute heavy-pad work. The examining panel conferred briefly before awarding the appropriate grades and advice for improvement where needed. Our congratulations to all those who have graded recently.
Time was allowed after the karate to relax and unwind with a shower and snack in anticipation of the nights events – a group meal, award ceremony and live band festivities. After a good mingle with a few drinks and games of pool, everyone gathered for their feast; a buffet style spread of food was laid out for the guests with a variety of meat, vegetables and vegan goodies. Several people were awarded for their discipline, attitude and dedication to Kazoku Kai and loyalty to karate training in general. A raffle was also held were gifts were appreciably snaffle up by the lucky ticket winners! A great music-band had been specially hired by Tony and they played some classics from recent and past times.
The party continued into the early morning with most people staying to the end and the odd hardcore few opting to continue drinking elsewhere before settling down for the night in the comfort of local B&B's before the traipse home in the morning. A hearty breakfast was provided by the B&B staff and a friendly goodbye set us in good stead for our return next year. I think it's fair to say that a good time was had by all with some interesting ideas passed between the Kazoku family members who are increasingly becoming a tighter-nit community with new inspiration from members and friends being continually added to the melting pot.
Once again, congratulations to all those who have graded and to all those who have won awards recently. Gambatte!!
Junior student of the year Jade Reeve
Senior students of the year Graham Buckley and John Phelps