We have started running two online classes per week. Please see the Classes page for details.
Last Class on Tuesday 17th March
It is with some sadness that we have decided that we'll have to cancel the adult classes until the situation improves. However, we will hold one last class on Tuesday 17th. It will be a very relaxed class practicing kata.
We are currently deciding the best course of action and will decide when to close the Saturday morning classes soon.
Video Classes for Home Training
We are considering the idea of uploading some short videos to help inspire you to continue training at home. Perhaps we could upload a new video every Tuesday and Thursday. Any thoughts?
Martin, Louise and Fabio
We are training as normal this week, but please keep up to date by checking this website as we might need to cancel classes at short notice. If you feel unwell, or have any concerns, please stay at home.
Martin, Louise and Fabio
On Saturday 15th February, Cambridge Goju Ryu celebrated it's ten year anniversary with a four hour seminar. Training was conducted by two very special guest instructors; Sensei George Andrews (Goju Ryu) and Sensei Simon Oliver (Shindo Jinen Ryu).
The club has been teaching adults during the week for ten years but in 2016 we expanded to include a class for children on Saturday mornings. Sensei George took the warm up session in which the young members of the club trained alongside the adults. Sensei Dave Amber then took the children for a separate session while Sensei George took the adults through a few basic techniques and combinations.
After a group photo and saying farewell to the children, the participants were split into two groups, black belts and kyu grades. Sensei George took the kyu grades through the complete sequence of ten San Dan Gi exercises, an important aspect of our fundamental training. The black belts were introduced to kata Seiryu by Sensei Simon Oliver, focusing on the self defense applications. Although this was outside the comfort zone of the group of largely Goju Ryu practitioners, it also felt strangely familiar. For more information about kata Seiryu, the Wikipedia entry for Konishi Sensei is a good start. In the final session of the afternoon, Sensei Simon introduced kata Seiryu to the kyu grades, while Sensei George took the black belts through a series of padwork drills followed by kakie (pushing hands).
After training, those that were able to make it relocated to The Dumpling Tree for a relaxed Chinese meal and a few beers. Martin and Louise felt honoured to be able to host an event with two great instructors of karate-do and to have been supported by so many of our students and friends. Particular thanks to those that traveled across the country in such bad weather. Thanks also to Sensei Dave for teaching the children and to Sensei Fabio Giovannoni for the original t-shirt design, the hand drawn Nio Guardians holding aloft the IOGKF kenkon.
Many thanks to Holly for taking the photos while suffering with a bad cold.
Thursday 19th December marked the last class of the year and we returned to our tradition of practicing kata 108 times. The significance of the number 108 at this time of year was described in this post from 2016. We took a break from this in 2017 and last year we practiced Shisochin kata 54 times as we were limited by the availability of the dojo. This year we practiced Gekisai Dai Ni. Many thanks to everyone that has supported the club this year. We are looking forward to 2020, with our ten year anniversary in February and several other events to look forward to.
Black belt grading examinations are taken under Sensei George, the OTGKA chief instructor, at the honbu dojo in London. We encourage our students to also take their 1st kyu grading on these occasions as it helps to avoid any surprises when attempting the black belt test.
It is with great pleasure that we can announce that Catherine successfully passed her shodan test this weekend, following 7 hours training and a 2 hour grading. Martin was promoted to 1st kyu, taking his last grading step on the path to black belt.
Since the club started we have raised money for a diverse range of good causes by holding one-off charity events. In 2016 we took part in our first "Thousand Strike Challenge" while wearing pink belts to support the Pink Ribbon Foundation, a breast cancer charity. It was such a success that we decided to do it all over again, this time donating money to two organisations, Muscular Dystrophy UK and Rowan Humberstone. To show that all participants are considered equal in this undertaking, and to reflect the branding of MD UK, we all wore orange belts.
Many thanks to everyone that took part and to all the generous donors, we have raised over £1,000 so far. The club is also very grateful to Sensei Dick Lovett, 5th Dan, from the Basildon dojo for coming up to Cambridge and ensuring we completed the 1,000 techniques, with a few extra to be sure. Domo arigato gozaimashita!!
The OTGKA honbu dojo in London holds a black belt grading weekend twice every year, in March and September. It is recommended that students that are ready to take their final brown belt test take this opportunity to prepare themselves for the black belt test that follows. A year ago the club gained a new Goju Ryu black belt as Gary Potter passed to shodan, with Xorge Castro passed to 1st kyu. This weekend was time for Xorge to take his black belt test and for Catherine Rooney to take her 1st kyu test. I am delighted to report that both candidates were successful.
Every grading is special, but we were especially proud of Xorge as he is the first club student to take the full journey from white belt to black belt at Cambridge Goju Ryu. Of course, the real journey starts now!