On the last week of July 2013, we hosted Yamakura Shihan for our annual Gasshuku. Shihan arrived to Tel Aviv Israel on a Saturday afternoon and classes started on the following day.  In our dojo we have 4 groups for kids (separated on account of age and professional level) and 1 adults group. 

   On Sunday, July 28, we have had an afternoon workout in our local Park. Parents and families were invited as well. Promotions were held to all the ones who could not join us for our intensive training camp. Our Instructors Chen Niv Sensei and Shraga Lapides Sensei worked respectively with their groups and gave Shihan a chance to assess their level of instruction. 




    After our park session was finished, Yamakura Shihan worked with our black belts and with the 3 members of our dojo who were sho dan candidates. Shihan assessed their work on kata and gave each one guidelines to work with.







     On Tuesday morning we all drove up north for a two days training camp. We all stayed together in an inn on the coast of the Mediterranean and had a great social time as well.
     Classes began on Tuesday noon.  Class was directed by Shihan and open to all ranks, starting from kihon, to kata, to yakusoku kumite, our school ippon kumite and kata bunkai.

     On the following day we started with an early morning Sanchin and Tensho class directed by Shihan, focusing on the energetic aspects of the kata. Soon after, a self defense combat survival class was conducted by me, emphasizing dynamic and aggressive work against multiple and armed attackers.

    After lunch we continued to formal promotions where testing for all ranks were performed.

     All Kyu ranks - adults and kids alike did very well.  Also, I'm very proud to report on the following new Dan ranks:

Mrs. Efrat Feldman             Sho Dan

Mrs. Mali Kanias                        Sho Dan                                               

Mr. Lior Yeshayahu             Sho Dan                                   

Mr. Shraga Lapides            Ni Dan                                   

Mr. David Halperin            Ni Dan



     Thanks to Mr. David Halperin one of our dojo senior members, we have had the opportunity to introduce Shihan Yamakura to two important figures in Israel; Mr. Eyal Nir Sensei who heads the Traditional Karate Federation in Israel and Mr. Denis Hanover founder of the "Hisardut" (survival in Hebrew) fighting system.

     Shihan's visit was an extraordinary experience for all of us. We all learned a lot and had a great time doing so. This time with Shihan enabled us to deepen our knowledge and understanding of the art as well as to strengthen our bond with the organization. We are all grateful to Yamakura Shihan for flying half way across the world to teach and to guide us. Also, we wish to extend our sincere gratitude to Stamper Kyoshi and Myers Renshi for assisting us in the preparations of Shihan's visit .

     A special thank you and appreciation from me goes to my assistants Mr. Chen Niv and Mr. Shraga Lapides who contributed greatly to the success of this visit, as well as to all of our dojo members who worked so hard and to their families for their continuous support. 

     Looking forward to Shihan's return in the coming summer…