Please read carefully

You are never so important that you can't find time to help somebody else;

You are never so wise that you don't remember who taught you;

You are never so gifted that you don't share your skills with others;

And you are never such big winners that you forget what it's like to lose.



Junior students should only ever expect to attain a stripe.

This is not a "lesser" grade it is a full grading award. 

 Occasionally a student excels and they are awarded a double grade - this is NOT the norm -

This belt system is implemented with good reason. 

 Progress through the belts gets much harder as the Kyu grade climbs.

It is very hard for some students to maintain the necessary skill levels required, if they attempt a grading and consistently fail they will give up and all their time and effort is wasted unnecessarily.

 This has adverse effects on their confidence and self esteem.

If parents or students need a fuller explanation of these rules,

before or after the grading, please see Soke or Sensei Kathy.



We believe in you.

How can you accept anything less from yourself ?

Do you want to excel at Karate ?

Well it's easy, you just have to apply the 10,000 hour rule .

In Gladwells book "Outliers" he expounds the theory of deliberate practice.

 Training with intent, considering every move and striving to perfect it.


It is only by doing this that you get the best out of each training session.

To be corrected in a technique once is acceptable but if you are constantly being picked up for the same fault you are either not listening or don't care.... ( showing disrespect for your teachers and yourself )

You are already in the class, you may as well give of your best and who knows, one day you could find that you have become EXCELLENT at your chosen sport.

Oh! and where do the 10,000 hours come in -- well, with 3 hours deliberate practice a day for 20 years  Gladwell says you can excell at anything.



From our experience the people that suceed well do not stop Karate when they leave the Dojo. They take their sport with them and practice at home, at the office, anywhere they can.

 Even if it is only for a few minutes a day.

Think of it as relaxation, rather like Yoga.

Use it to free the mind and forget about stress for a few minutes every day.


Pams training tip for 2018

I know I am usually in the background these days but I have seen a LOT of karate and a LOT of students in the past 40 years so I have learned a thing or two..

Some students coast through on raw talent ( these are few and very far between) but most stumble their way towards Black Belt and many fall by the wayside.

Read on and find out how you can make it easier on yourself.....

When you start Karate it is quite easy to progress through the first few belts.

 Nothing more is required than regular training and a willingness to give your best ( most of the time).

BUT- Somewhere around Green belt it starts to change, the Katas get harder, more effort is required at class, in other words, you are out of the "nursery" stage and into learning what Karate is all about.

 This is where a lot of students falter and "take a little rest".

At Purple belt there is a big wake up call. The student suddenly realises that this could get serious.

The ability to achieve a Black Belt is now within their grasp.

BUT, this can't happen without a great deal of planning.

Whats that old saying -- "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail".

I am always amazed that students rarely come to Soke and ask for a training plan to get them fully prepared for their Black Belt.

He has all the knowlege to smooth the path, he can tell you what he expects from you as an individual and formulate

a suitable class plan to get you on track.

 There are many factors to take into account.

 Life style, family committments, demands of work or school, even unexpected injuries.

This all has to be factored in, not just for a few months, but maybe several years.

 By now you should view your Karate as something you live every day.

It's not a race to get to Black Belt it is an individual pact with yourself, remember the Dojo kune.

So my training tip to you for 2018 is





          TURN UP   ------ 




These 2 subjects must be studied earnestly as they are critical to the execution of all techniques and performances in Martial Arts. 

           Three simple exercises for you to try are included at the end of this subject.

Good posture allows you to transition  from one stance or technique to another and enhances balance, adding to the overall quality and efficiency of your movements.

For example, repeated over reaching when punching or hyper extension when kicking,creates

inbalance/instability and can also cause injury to the karate-ka. 

In turn, this flawed technique can be used against you by an opponent. 

Exercise 1 -  Once you have learned a stance, and while moving to the next one, check your posture in a mirror if you can. For instance Long stance, your back should be kept straight and vertical with no lean either to back, front or side

Your head should maintain a constant level with no bobbing up and down when moving from one stance to the next.

Exercise 2 - A simple exercise but a bit corny -  Imagine you are a puppet and someone is holding a string coming out of the top of your head. At all times as you move the string must stay tight and vertical ( use your imagination) .

Exercise 3 - For balance, pick a spot on the wall at eye level ( not one that moves), concentrate on that spot while lifting your leg, the standing leg must not have the knee joint locked.

 Keep arms in Kamae and hold balance for several minutes. Remember to give equal time to each leg, don't just favour your "best" one. This exercise also has the added benefit of strengthening your ankles and calf muscles.



This an old but true saying, especially in Martial Arts.

It is important to be technically correct with your learning, speed will come with correct practice. However once a student has a general idea of a technique it is also important to introduce the element of speed  whilst putting the element of intent into the move, this will be provided with partner work.

 Always work honestly with your partner  allowing them to perfect their technique initially without undue pressure, but escalating the intensity as they become confident with the moves. 

If they appear to have problems performing reduce intensity until the technique is back on track.


The following isn't strictly a training tip but it will reflect your attitude towards training.

People turn up at class with all manner of bags etc to keep their equipment in.

Please get a large bag, ideally a club one, they are capable of holding all your gear, waterproof and virtually indestructable.

There is nothing more upsetting at the start of a Grading or comp than finding you have mislaid a mouthguard or belt.

Remember - it is your responsibility to look after your equipment, make sure it is clean, in good repair and always return it to your bag ready for the next class


Beginners stances

When you start a Martial Art it is extremely important to learn stances ( how to stand ) with balance,movement and focus.

These are the foundations, or rock, on which to build your Martial Arts.

Initially frustrating, but the important thing is to keep practising and take all criticism as constructive in the development of your art.

For the initial stance 2 lines can be marked on the floor ( or use tiles or floorboards) to establish correct width of stance at each step. Ideal width of forward facing stance should be your own shoulder width.

When moving transfer weight on to other leg completely without rocking side to side and keeping moving foot low to floor.

When you have gained confidence focus on a static point on a wall approximately eye height, concentrate on this point whilst moving forward. Try to be consistent with the height of your stance, do not bob up and down.

After establishing stance make sure that you are pushing your energy downwards internally to make a grounded, firm, stance.

 LONG STANCE ( forward facing)

Front knee should always be bent and directly above ankle. Back leg should be straight knee locked and heel on the ground.

 When transitioning from long stance to another long stance bring  the back leg through to the front,  keep what was the front foot, but is now the back foot, flat on the floor and leave it there, do not allow the heel of the back foot to come off of the floor, if it does you are trying to have too long a stance for your height.

If you work on these stances your leg muscles will strengthen and it is your leg strength that will carry you through a Grading.