Gasshuku 1998

An event for high grades of Shotokai Karate-do was organized this February (’98). It was held in Algarrobo, Chile, a small tourist city in the fifth region of Chile, on the coast. the event lasted 4 days each day with two training sessions, one in the morning and the other in the early afternoon. All the sessions were directed by Humberto Heyden sensei.

The training sessions consisted in basic technique, kata, torite, bokken, kumite among others. All sessions were very interesting and on some new kata were trained and learnt by the lower grades. At the end of the course a surprise exam was held for the lower grades. As a result of this, Gloria Medina passed to 2nd kyu, Carlos Poblete to 3rd kyu, Cristian Sprohnle to 3rd kyu.

It was an event with very intense training sessions, with a strong psychological pressure, the participants experienced unexpected situations and some experienced indescribable and strange events. I hope some of them can in the future write a bit about them.

Tenshingoso and Eiko practice were the stars of the event, something completely new for the participants and a great revelation too. Once we overcame the initial discomfort and the learning of the movements and basic sounds, a slow but progressive intuitive understanding of the strength and importance of them began to emerge. Yes, of course, there is much to learn and understand but our brief encounter with them has given us a motive to continue practicing them in the future.

Something that was new for me personally was the bokken and irimi defense against it. A very intense training and very demanding psychologically. There was no way to lower your guard, no space for doubts the best defense being the detection of the attack as soon as possible and the ideal before any movement (deai).

It was a very important event, not only due to the technical training but mostly due to the sharing between all those involved, the comradeship and the sharing of experiences. Surely this is an event that should be repeated with the same character year after year.

Thank you Shotokai

June 14th 1998