Sensei and Expertise

Hi All.

A chance to blow my own trumpet here….

Last week in this club I was teaching a group of students some basics, in this case it was Yoko Geri Keage, the side snapping kick, when I noticed that some (not all) of the students were not doing what I was instructing them to do. It was to do with the way that one steps across and sideways. When moving left to right the left foot crosses over the top of the right and lands only a few centimetres to the right of the right foot. This means that you have a good balance point.

If one steps to far over to the right then the body pitches in that direction and your balance is compromised. I went to some lengths to go over this point (which I have covered numerous times before) but found that the same members carried on over-stepping. As a Sensei I found this a little disappointing because it gave the impression that they thought they knew better than me, and they should have shown the correct humility.

So I stopped the class and pointed out that I have been teaching Karate for many years having started training when I was 16 (I am now 63), and that some of the Sensei that I had trained under were the legendary Sensei Kanazawa, Sensei Asano and Sensei Kato (from left to right below).

I had been given the honour on two occasions by Sensei Kanazawa to take the warm-up for a group of 500 students, and on one occasion when Sensei Asano had lost his voice through a heavy cold he asked me to call out the commands.

I was fortunate to take gradings under all three of these amazing Karate-Ka and I took my 1st (Sho)Dan and passed at the first go under Sensei Asano.

Sensei Kanazawa trained under the founder of modern Karate Sensei Gichin Funakoshi as well as the highly respected late Sensei Nakayama…and Sensei Kanazawa taught me!

So, I kind of know what I am talking about when I instruct students in the Buntingford Karate Club.

When we learn we must each try to be like an empty cup and receive into ourselves whatever liquid is poured. A cup does not know what the liquid is so the cup cannot complain about that liquid. It simply accepts the liquid. It cannot change the liquid. It must simply accept it.

Sensei Bill.