CONGRATULATIONS TO THE STUDENTS WHO EARNED PROMOTIONS AT OUR AUGUST 2 & 3 TRAINING CAMP.
Junior Green Belt #1 – Smyan Chinnam & Jarod Gajada Junior Green Belt #2 – Mikey Donica
Junior Purple Belt #1 – Jake Brader Senior Green Belt – Jesse Micari Senior Brown Belt #3 – Ashley Banks, Carolyn Kulick & Tom Schroeder Senior Brown Belt #1 – Jay Brader Sho Dan – First Degree Black Belt – Kristyn Wheeler, Shirley Zavala, Scott Conroy, Robert Kulick & Trevor Silva Roku Dan – Sixth Degree Black Belt – Adam Masur
Our August training overnight and Mission I’mpossible Theme Event (August 2nd & 3rd) were a TREMENDOUS success. The importance may be easily seen because Shihan Downs from Hamburg, NY and Shihan Pushard from Manchester, ME arrived early and participated in each section and also conducted sessions of their own.
Being a part of training sessions and additional events enhance a student’s enjoyment of our program and Isshin-ryu Karate. Each event suggested is one that Renshi Hughes, the black belts and I have investigated and approve.
UPCOMING EVENTS TO CONSIDER
SEPTEMBER 21st – AMERICAN OKINAWAN TOURNAMENT – BAYONNE, NJ
Pre-register by September 7th and save $ $ $ $
OCTOBER 19TH – BENEFIT CHILDREN’S KATA TOURNAMENT
LONG VALLEY MIDDLE SCHOOL – SEE KYOSHI TO REGISTER & HELP
WE ARE HELPING THE HACKETTSTOWN & WASHINGTON TWP. PBA’S SPONSOR IT.
Thoughts regarding the IWKA 2013 Championships:
Despite being unsatisfied with the hotel and having some issues with the judging, I had a great weekend. I was very glad to have been there to see Hanshi Duessel accept his promotion to Ju-Dan (10th Degree Black Belt), which was a very moving experience. During Hanshi and O’Sensei’s seminars, it was refreshing to witness both of them stressing fundamentals we know and have practiced for years. Having met the majority of the individuals in my division from prior tournaments, the competition was fun and friendly. I even was given the opportunity to demonstrate my backup kata, after tying with Lee Gugler! I was happy with my performances in all the events; the months of extra practice paid off. We even got a chance to socialize a bit with karate students from other schools that we haven’t seen since the 2011 World Tournament. I’m looking forward to finding out where the 2015 event will be held, as it was not announced at the banquet.
Artist Creating a Sculpture – by Jim Rohn
Could creating your character be likened to an artist creating a sculpture? In my opinion, I believe that character is not something that just happens by itself, any more than a chisel can create a work of art without the hand of an artist guiding it. In both instances, a conscious decision for a specific outcome has been made. A conscious process is at work.
Character is the result of hundreds and hundreds of choices you make that gradually turn who you are, at any given moment, into who you want to be. If that decision-making process is not present, you will still be somebody. You will still be alive, but may have a personality rather than a character.
Character is not something you were born with and can’t change, like your fingerprints. In fact, because you weren’t born with it, it is something that you must take responsibility for creating. I don’t believe that adversity by itself builds character and I certainly don’t think that success erodes it.
Character is built by how you respond to what happens in your life. Whether it’s winning every game or losing every game. Getting rich or dealing with hard times. You build character out of certain qualities that you must create and diligently nurture within yourself. Just like you would plant and water a seed or gather wood and build a campfire. You’ve got to look for those things in your heart and in your gut. You’ve got to chisel away in order to find them. Just like chiseling away the rock in order to create the sculpture that has previously existed only in your imagination.
But do you want to know the really amazing thing about character? If you are sincerely committed to making yourself into the person you want to be, you’ll not only create those qualities, but you’ll continually strengthen them. And you will recreate them in abundance even as you are drawing on them every day of your life. Just like the burning bush in the biblical book of Exodus, the bush burned but the flames did not consume it. Character sustains itself and nurtures itself even as it is being put to work, tested, and challenged. And once character is formed, it will serve as a solid, lasting foundation upon which to build the life you desire.
Our instructors emphasize doing the right things inside and outside the dojo. We wish to support and augment the good lessons being taught at home. Our student handbook stresses the issues of character development during classes and during other training events. “ . . . As the student is guided through the levels of understanding, he or she will develop the strength physically and mentally to accept the challenges of karate and life, developing and demonstrating positive influences upon others by the character that will become a part of his or her daily life. Spiritual and emotional growth will become possible as the student develops the mental and physical tools to resist the adverse challenges of the world. . . It is our belief that children and adults need structure in their lives and a strong support system of family, friends and mentors to encourage and enable them . . . Our goal is to help define this structure in a way that provides our younger students with well-defined guidelines, equipping them morally, emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually for the everyday challenges of growing up. Having structure allows the child to focus on improving themselves within acceptable guidelines, reaping the rewards of good behavior and understanding the consequences of inappropriate conduct. Structure provides a foundation for growth allowing children to become strong, self-disciplined, self-confident and self-reliant as they become young adults. We have been very successful in helping children become responsible young adults, and this is only achieved with your help and support.
ADVICE TO CURRENT STUDENTS FROM OUR NEW SHO DAN, FIRST DEGREE BLACK BELTS:
- Work hard each class. There may be times when you want to stop but put your mind to and push forward.
- Practice at home to supplement what is learned in class.
- Do personal conditioning.
- Nothing is too hard or too big for you to handle.
- Have an open mind to learn and want to learn.
- Involve yourself in the dojo family.
- Everyone is here to help you succeed.
AS THE SCHOOL YEAR IS ABOUT TO BEGIN REMEMBER TO KEEP UP WITH SCHOOL STUDIES, HOMEWORK AND FAMILY RESPONSIBILITIES. MAKE TIME FOR KARATE TRAINING SO YOU DO NOT FORGET AND HAVE TO RELEARN. BE CONSCIOUS TO BE POSITIVE TOWARD OTHERS AND HELP THOSE WHO MAY NEED HELP IF OTHERS ARE LESS COURTEOUS.