Due to the help of students, parents of students, students from neighboring karate schools, competitors and everyone who attended our 26th benefit karate tournament, 4/10/11, the day was a tremendous success.  THANKS is a little word but expresses my gratitude for the help and friendship of everyone who helped make the day memorable.

April Newsletter, Benefit Tournament & Life’s Purpose




Congratulations to the people who earned promotions since our last newsletter.  Junior  Yellow Belt  Dakota Christiano    Junior Orange Belt  – Nicolas Curcio    Yellow Belt  Jay Brader, Jeff Brown     Green Belt  Shirley K. Zavala, Scott Conroy, Susan Torlucci     Brown Belt #1 – Joseph Reilbold  



To: Students and Parents:

Re:  American Isshin-ryu


    We are striving to improve membership numbers in the American Isshinryu Association for 2011.  This group has gone to a one-time “lifetime” membership for just $35.00.  There will be four mini seminars in 2011 and we will keep the costs of these seminars extremely low for our members (generally about $20.00).  There is so much we can do for Isshinryu but I do need your help to accomplish what is ahead of us. 


    I have attached a link with the application form for you.  Fill it out and just bring it into the dojo and give it to me at any class (OR I have forms at the dojo). Remember, when you write the check to AMERICAN ISSHINRYU, INC“, it is totally deductible because we are a 501 C 3 non-profit organization with the State of NJ.  Do not make any checks out to me or to the dojo for your membership.  You only need one reference on your form, use my name.  Our dojo number on the form is #39.


    All Life members will get their new lifetime certificate, membership card and two sleeve patches.  Thank you to those of you who have already sent in your memberships.  See me if you have any questions.




            Karate Training Sessions at Renshi and Kyoshi Hughes’ – – July 8 & 9, 2011





When you want to attract your dreams into your present day life you can only do it if you have a clear intention of what it is that you really want. This object or goal must be something that you crave and want with all of your heart and soul. You must be able to focus clearly on your life purpose and be able to picture it with clarity and detail in your mind. Some people may not understand what a true-life purpose is so let me explain.

Your vision, expectations, and hopes for your life and future are perhaps the best definition of your life purpose that I’ve ever heard. It has been shown that the Law of Attraction is responsible for all past, present and future events in the lives of everyone in the world. If your life is not all that you hoped it would be, it is the result of your thoughts and negative energy that has attracted those things that you do not want while shielding you from the positive experiences you crave. Look inside your heart and mind and find out if you really believe that you have the right to a wonderful, happy life. If you are not presently enjoying success, riches and love then the answer to the question is “No”, and your current situation is all that you feel you deserve.


Are you envious of others who seem to be living the perfect life? These people are easy to spot because they are full of joy and gladness and it is obvious even to strangers. Individuals like this are delightful to be near and they attract others to them that have the same traits and positive energy that they themselves possess. In other words these people are living their life on purpose and getting those things they desire most. Their energy vibration is at a high level and is able to attract whatever they want. We get what we truly believe we deserve; so why doesn’t everyone have money, love and joy?

Marsha Sinetar authored a book in 1989,“Do What You Love, the Money Will Follow – Discovering Your Right Livelihood”. This is very insightful reading, which I highly recommend to anyone. It outlines what you need to do to attract what you want most into your life. Yes, getting what you want out of life is really an easy process that anyone can learn, and practice.

If you follow the steps on this Website and learn how to truly believe in the power and goodness that you possess you can attract everything you want with no effort. You need positive thoughts and energy, and you need to learn how to truly focus so the Law of Attraction can begin working. When you find that you are becoming stressed out or experiencing other negative, counter-productive emotions, you must get rid of those thoughts and feelings right away.

Now this does not mean that you will never get upset, and there are still going to be occasions when you have to do something that really does not make you very happy. However you will learn to control your emotions and stop dwelling on the negatives. You will become able to keep your focus on your one true-life vision and keep working toward bringing it into your present day reality. This might take some practice, but you will succeed at identifying and manifesting your life purpose.

Some people might think this is a lot easier to read about than actually put into practice, but it really is easy to do. Understand that your true-life vision is probably hidden deep in your heart, and it is up to you to find it. You should use a journal to record all of your ideas and thoughts and use this as a map to help you identify your life purpose.

Look at the things that you dream about or think about when you are all alone. What kind of life or career do you imagine yourself having? These are the questions that can unlock the answers for which you are searching.

Family and friends might turn negative and try to dissuade you from your goal. You might hear that you are being foolish and silly. Never let these negative words and people influence you into abandoning your quest for your life purpose. The Universe wants to help you and will provide you with the strength and wisdom you must have to succeed. You CAN do it, because you are a positive part of the Universe.

You don’t have to quit work, toss away savings and relationships and climb to the top of a mountain peak. This spiritual learning experience should blend in with your life and lead you to an even brighter future. If you have the courage to follow your heart and desires you can begin this quest today, and once you have found your life purpose you will never look back at your past.




JUNE 23 to 25, 2011

            There are 3-day packages for seminars, banquet and tournament

            for under brown belts, and brown / black belts


            Individual events may be registered also


JOHN HOFFMIRE – 317-835-8802





2011 ISK Benefit Tournament

Sunday, April 10, 2011

It is hard to believe but another year has started and preparations are already under way for our 26th annual benefit tournament. Each year we work to make the event run smoothly and charge reasonable fees for competitors and spectators, so everyone may attend. American Isshinryu members will receive a $5.00 discount for pre-registering by March 28, 2011.

As always we will create extra divisions if the number of competitors in a division is large to make the competition fair and enjoyable for everyone.

I hope you and your students will be able to attend to help us raise funds for the American Diabetes Foundation and the high school sports program. Diabetes and obesity are growing in this country because of the eating and exercise habits of our population. Because of some more recent media presentations, people are becoming aware of the problem and strides are being made with research technologies. Hopefully a cure will be found in the not too distant future.

We will continue to be a NO CONTACT tournament for all competitors. This includes all students from white belt to black belt. The philosophy that is stressed is that CONTROL should be able to be demonstrated by all competitors. Students must wear protective hands, feet, headgear, mouth guards and groin protection in addition for the men.

Download Forms:
2011 ISK_Tournament_Directions
2011 ISK_Tournament_Package


Kyoshi John E. Hughes
8th Degree Black Belt

American Isshinryu, Weather, Kick-A-Thon

THANKS to everyone who attended the American Isshin-ryu Seminars Saturday, November 13th at Fit Happens. Remember renewal for the association should be done ASAP. The cost is just $35.00 for a Life Time membership. This membership helps keep Isshin-ryu Karate Strong, reduces costs for periodic seminars and much more.

Weather Reminder: As we approach the winter season, listen to WRNJ Radio 1510 if the weather is questionable. I will make class cancellations by 4 pm on days when weather conditions may not be safe.

Our annual kick-a-thon for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital was held November 8 to 13. We have kicked 34,690 times and have raised $1065 so far this year, which makes our grand total $14,940 since we started Kick-A-Thons. WELL DONE EVERYONE and get those final forms in.


American Isshinryu looks to provide assistance to any dojo that looks to grow its understanding of bunkai, kumite, weapons, self defense and better business procedures. One major difference in our approach is that we do not look to interfere between you and your sensei. We do not look to become your sensei. That bond is a special dynamic that we respect and honor. We offer direction without prejudice; we offer focus by setting new standards. We welcome you to AMERICAN ISSHINRYU, INC.

Panther Valley Village Square (mall)
1581 County Road 517 (off exit 19 on Route 80)
Hackettstown, NJ 07840

TIME:1 pm to 3:30 pm (1 hour seminars with a break)

COST: $20.00 for current AI members
$45.00 for non-members, which includes a lifetime membership

MASTER DONALD NASH, 8th Degree Black Belt

Topic: self-defense moves taken for our kata’s.
Bio: I was exposed to Martial Arts in 1964 with a good friend teaching me Judo. I started training in Isshinryu in the late 60’s, received my Sho-Dan on Janurary 22, 1970 from Sensei John Hendrickson.
Opened the Isshinyu Karate Klub at the age of seventeen – 1982 Hosted Master Kichiro Shimabuku Seminar
– 1984 Travel to Okinawa to train with Master Shimabuku and other first generation students – 1988 winner of the IWKA grand champion Kata – 1988 Isshinryu Spirit award from IIKA – 1993 Received Hachi-Dan from Master Don Nagle

MASTER DENNIS HOARE, 8th Degree Black Belt

Topic: The seminar will be an overview of TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) and how they locate pressure points and hit them. We will demonstrate how nerve strikes and pressure points will aid in making our Isshinryu self defense and fighting more effective. I will do some explanation and then hands on so it is can be retained. I will also try to back the techniques into our basics or kata so they become more personalized to our style. I do not plan on doing any knockouts or anything like that. All should have a good time
Bio: Began Isshinryu Karate training in the Mercer Street Dojo in Jersey City in about 1963 under Sensei Don Nagle. He was Master Nagle’s second in command, was in charge of running the Central Avenue Dojo. The school was officially handed over to Master Hoare in about 1997 and is still operating today attempting to carry on Sensei Nagle’s teachings


While we’re all together, let’s to something good for those suffering from diabetes. We’ll kick for 5 minutes to raise money for diabetes research through the “Martial Arts for St. Jude” program. Get sponsors to donate to the cause. They can sponsor you per kick or just donate a fixed amount for your participation.

  1. Download a sponsor packet.
  2. Find generous friends and family to sponsor you.
  3. Bring your completed form and donations the day of the event.

ANY QUESTIONS CALL MY CELL 908-797-0087 – John E. Hughes

July 2010: Thoughts on Sho-Dan. Get ready for karate camp.

The training sessions at our home were very rewarding and productive. During Saturday’s sessions time was spent working on improving basics, self-defense, kata, kumite skills, conditioning and much more. Mr. Gugler, our newest Sho Dan, started his process at 6:59 PM Friday evening and earned is promotion to First Degree Black Belt at the end of the demonstration at 3:00 PM Saturday. Many black belts came to help him and the other students enjoy the time together and advance their abilities. THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO CAME, HELPING TO MAKE THE DAY REWARDING AND MEMORABLE.

Congratulations to the people who earned promotions at our June 19th training sessions at our home.

  • Junior Green Belt #1
    • Riley Kamm
  • Junior Green Belt #2
    • Arshdeep Singh
  • Senior Brown Belt # 3
    • Bridget Driscoll
    • Clairanne Arcaro
  • Senior Brown Belt #1
    • Anthony Curcuruto
  • Sho Dan (1st Degree Black Belt)
    • Lee Gugler

CONGRATULATIONS to Miss Natalie Montone for completing her first 50 Mile bike ride during the June 13th American Diabetes Association Tour de Cure in Basking Ridge.

Sho Dan, First Degree Black Belt, traditionally is the starting point in a person’s study of a martial art. This seems very strange to many people inside and outside the karate world. The Black belt is thought to be the top of the ranking scales. Growth must go beyond the physical and mental repetition of basics, drills, kata, self -defense, weapons and much more. Growth must become intrinsic and emotional, learning to combine the Body, Mind and Spirit.

Sho Dan is a beginning point, like schooling. Each grade must be earned. Each new experience brings new challenges, stresses and higher levels of learning and understanding. UNDERSTANDING is the key to the puzzle that most karate instructors do not take the time to look at – – because they are more interested in the number of black belts in their schools and the money they make off each promotion. Understanding TAKES TIME, EFFORT, MATURITY AND AGE. Most children (and some adults) cannot understand the responsibility, levels of application and abilities that must be accepted willingly with each promotion (especially with each of the levels of black belt). This is the major reason why from 1979 to today I have not promoted a child to this level.

To begin to grasp this understanding so more may be learned, one needs guidance, friendship, leadership, internal drive, a thick skin, heart and the willingness to know that there is more . . . THE BEGINNER’S MIND. There will not be something new every day or week or even every year. One must be able to keep friendships, loyalties and the duty to the arts separate. In the past 31 years as being a Sensei, I have had students stop training because:

  • they thought they had learned all they could
  • they thought they had learned all that was necessary
  • ego took over the ability to learn and grow.

Do you want to arrive at the first level? Look within and keep a beginner’s mind. Don’t abandon ship. Black Belts are the Ants of the Karate World – – If they truly live life to the fullest. If this is necessary for Sho Dan–what is necessary for higher levels?


REMEMBER THE TRAINING SESSIONS AT KYOSHI AND RENSHI HUGHES’ HOME – FRIDAY, August 13th and SATURDAY, August 14th. This overnight camping and training experience is open to all students. Those students, younger than 10, are encouraged to bring an adult for the overnight portion of the event.

You will need:

  • A tent (if you wish) (OR make plans to share)
  • Sleeping clothes
  • Sleeping bag or blanket
  • Flashlight
  • Clothes to change into after the workouts
  • Karate uniform
  • Toothbrush, insect repellent, etc
  • Gym bag to put items in when not being
  • Old sneakers & socks – mandatory for the river
  • Extra socks – t-shirts – sneakers


Parents are welcome to come and watch any portion of the event. Lawn chairs are recommended for the family gathering at the end of the session. We will be setting up tents, etc at 7pm Friday. Organized classes and experiences will be conducted both Friday and Saturday.

We will provide Friday snacks, Saturday breakfast, lunch, drinks, snacks and hot dogs and hamburgers, as well as turkey burgers for dinner. All cups, utensils, plates will be provided. Saturday at 3:00 P.M. demonstration and promotion ceremonies for those prepared will be followed by dinner. Please sign up with Kyoshi or Renshi Hughes to bring a cover dish for the dinner. Please put a name on dishes you want returned so we may get them back to you quickly . . . or take them before you leave. The permission slip and fees must be returned by August 10th so we may plan the meals etc for the two days. See Kyoshi for a permission slip.

Hanshi Duessel’s 2010 Summer Seminars

Seventy-seven Isshin-ryu enthusiasts attended seminars Saturday, June 26th, at the North Jersey Martial Arts Academy, which were hosted by Shihan Marvin Carmona (7th Dan) and his wife Kelly.  Black belts and Brown belts from New Jersey, Maine, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas and Ohio were in attendance.

The first seminar about developing the understanding of Centering, Balance, Posture and Power Development involved lecture and hands on practice.

The second seminar about Sai Basics, proper use of the Okinawan Weapon and the Short Sai Kata was very informative and well received.

Following lunch the group was educated about proper kumite judging and four rings were created at the host dojo so numerous black belts could advance their skills under the guidance and supervision of the advanced 7th and 8th Degree Black Belts in attendance, as well as Hanshi Duessel. Many positive results were expressed when the entire group got together before leaving for the social gathering that concluded the events.

The 2012 event is currently scheduled for Kent, Ohio with Sensei Heidi Gauntner.

June 2010: Weigh, Count and Measure

The article, “How to Conserve Energy in Martial Arts” by Dr. Emeric Arus, founder of the Int’l. Sendo-Ryu Karatedo Federation, says energy is the capacity for doing work.

  1. Potential energy which is the capacity of a body to do work by virtue of its position relative to a reference, measured in Joule, and
  2. Kinetic energy, which is the energy due to its motion/action. Kinetic energy also has two forms of manifestation: Linear kinetic energy (LKE) and angular/rotational kinetic energy (RKE).

Both linear and angular kinetic energy are dependent upon the interaction of mass and velocity. If we take the mass and velocity in each case as a constant attribute, the angular kinetic energy is stronger than the linear kinetic energy. This is because in rotational motion any mass tends also to accelerate due to centrifugal force; and during the time of liberation of the body mass with the technique, e.g. spinning back kick, the energy liberated will be much stronger than in the case of linear kinetic energy. In this case a punch such as an uppercut, a fencing technique such as cut, or a spinning back kick will be much stronger than techniques executed linearly. By gaining speed the technique will have better penetration power.

Karate has many different “styles”; some styles are recognized as “soft styles,” and others are recognized as “hard styles.” The various martial arts find the ‘hard styles’ of karate demands more energy expenditure because almost every action/attack and even defense must be done with the total concentration of the athlete’s energy. The more energy that is invested in an attack the more destructive will be the effect of that impact. Most of the attacks demand anaerobic power. This is the reason that proper breathing during the technique is important.

Soft style karate uses less energy because the actions/techniques are executed more gently. The athlete is not required to perform anaerobically, and most importantly the athlete uses techniques with soft guiding movement. Further analyzing the different techniques within a style, we observe that kicking techniques require more energy than punching techniques for two reasons: Legs are heavier than arms; legs must work harder against the force of gravity. Accordingly, the higher an athlete lifts up his/her leg the more energy is needed. Soft style karate tends to use more body shifting, explaining that it is easier to avoid an attack than to block. There is a big misconception about this proposal. It is true that when two body parts collide there is a dissipation of energy (explosion of energy), this is the case in hard style karate; but it is also true that when you must avoid an attack by moving away, you also lose energy by moving.

The attacker always loses more energy than the defender whether there is contact or not. Theoretically the defender should lose more energy when he/she is moving than simple just blocking and holding his/her position. The defender will lose more energy than moving a smaller mass such as an arm.

If the training is extremely hard for a very long period of time (months of training) with little or no rest between the training sessions, the martial artist enter in a so said over training or burn out state. By using an adequate training protocol the martial artist will be able to control his/her actions and in this way he/she will conserve energy.

Ideas from the Student Handbook, and for the good of the order

  • Dues should be paid the first week of each month.
  • There are no promotion fees, but we ask that you pay for each obi (belt). Adults should join the IWKA after attaining their Yellow Belts & prior to earning their Green Belts. This organization is headed by the son of the founder of the style and sets standards for promotion. Students may join Hanshi Duessel’s Affiliation after this time. Children may join the IWKA as well.
  • Respect will be shown to all karate-ka at all times. A respectful bow will be given whenever entering and exiting the workout area.
  • Shoes are not to be worn on the workout floor.
  • The only patches we wear on our gi (uniform) are the Isshin-ryu patch on the left chest – over the heart, the dojo patch – 1” up on the right sleeve, the WHD patch above our dojo patch and the American Isshinryu Association patch – 1” up on the left arm.
  • Never correct the technique of a senior student (If in doubt, ask). NEVER ask for material to be added on. Additions are made when the student demonstrates proficiency and understanding of the material already given.
  • Kumite or sparring will be practiced under the supervision of black belts only.
  • Kyu ranks are forbidden to conduct demonstrations or teach privately without consent from their sensei. Black belts should clear activities prior to the session as well.
  • It is recommended that all students buy protective hand, foot and head gear. These are available from Kyoshi. Students pay only the cost of the equipment (with shipping). We do not add extra charges on equipment needed to train.

Why Weigh, Count and Measure? by Jim Rohn

Photo Credit: Chris Runoff (

Three key words to remember: weigh, count and measure. Now why weigh, count and measure? To see what your results are from your activity, your attitude and your philosophy. If you find that the results are not to your liking, there are only three places to look. Your philosophy needs to be fine-tuned, your attitude needs to be strengthened or your discipline needs extra skill. Activity, attitude and philosophy create results.

Now on results I teach that life expects you to make measurable progress in reasonable time. But, you must be reasonable with time. Here are some good time frames:

  1. at the end of the day. You can’t let more than a day go by without looking at some things and making progress.
  2. at the end of the week. We ask for an accounting of the week so we can issue the pay. And whatever you’ve got coming, that’s what you get when the week is over. In karate there must also be an accounting. Ask if something was learned either in kata, kumite or skill development. Because activity leads to productivity, we need to see how we’re doing.

Success is a numbers game and very early in my karate training and education I started asking: “How many books have you read in the last 90 days?” “How many classes have you attended in the last six months to improve your skills?” If these numbers are not showing a positive demonstration of dedication, discipline and activity, your life won’t change. But if you’ll start improving these numbers, then perhaps you’ll start to see everything change for you.

Here’s the best accounting. The accounting you make of yourself. You’ve got to add up some of your own numbers and ask, “Am I making the progress I want and will it take me where I want to go now and in the future?” You be the judge!

Because of the Memorial Day Weekend there will be no classes at Fit Happens on Saturday, May 29th and at the Main Street Dojo on Monday, May 31st.


The Saturday sessions are open to ALL students and they are ALL encouraged to attend. The demonstrations at the end and promotions should be a must see event this year.




2010 ISK Benefit Tournament

Our 25th annual benefit karate tournament April 25th was a big success. 203 competitors from 24 dojos from Connecticut , New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey turned out to compete, show their support the American Diabetes Tour De Cure and HHS Sports Program, who were the beneficiaries of this year’s charity event.

My thanks to the competitors who demonstrated good kata, kumite, weapons and sportsmanship, and to the black belts that worked all day!

Download the 2010 Benefit Tournament Results.


TO: SENSEI of area dojo


DATE: Sunday, APRIL 25, 2010

FROM: J. E. HUGHES, 8th Degree Black Belt

It is hard to believe but another year has started and preparations are already under way for our 25th annual benefit tournament. Each year we work to make the event run smoothly and charge reasonable fees for competitors and spectators, so everyone may attend.

I hope you and your students will be able to attend to help us raise funds for the American Diabetes Foundation and the high school sports program. Diabetes and obesity are growing in this country because of the eating and exercise habits of our population. Because of some more recent media presentations, people are becoming aware of the problem and strides are being made with research technologies. Hopefully a cure will be found in the not too distant future.

We will continue to be a NO CONTACT tournament for all competitors. This includes all students from white belt to black belt. The philosophy that is stressed is that CONTROL should be able to be demonstrated by all competitors. Students must wear protective hands, feet, headgear, mouth guards and groin protection in addition for the men.

Kyoshi John E. Hughes
8th Degree Black Belt
email –