News

The 2022 JKS England Christmas Course

SubscribeDon't miss out on any of our new news - subscribe today and we'll keep you up to date!
By SC / NB
Published Monday, December 5, 2022

The JKS England Christmas Course was once again held in Nottingham and marked a great end to a year which had seen the return of Kagawa Shihan, great success for the JKS England squad, some excellent tournaments and many grading successes.


It was the latter which was a prominent feature of the introduction made by Alan Campbell Sensei, Head of JKS England. After welcoming the busy hall of students, Alan Sensei congratulated Matt Price Sensei on his recent exploits in Japan, where Matt Sensei graded and passed Nanadan (7th dan). This accomplishment could not be more deserved for a senior member of JKS England who lives and breathes the martial art. A loud round of applause was given to acknowledge this remarkable feat and allowed students to show their respect for the quality Matt Sensei brings to the table as in instructor, coach and karateka. A wealth of higher grades were in attendance and fitting to be able to commend Matt Sensei on his achievement, further recognising the excellence which the JKS is proud to both have and revere. Well done Matt Sensei!


Beginning the session, a warm-up and stretch was done before Nick Heald Sensei, 7th Dan JKS, took the reins. Nick Sensei began with a kata exercise which needed both concentration and awareness to be able to negotiate. Starting with the first few moves of each of the Heian katas, Nick Sensei would combine these sections to give everyone an early Christmas present in the form of an encyclopaedic puzzle, which the students were guided carefully through. Nick Sensei acted to conduct the class at a great pace to ensure the transitions were understood and executed in the right directions. This challenged students, as moving to different angles in known katas can be unsettling, especially if the kata has only ever been practiced in its standard orientation. Directing this focus further, the pattern of discussing important teaching points and adding a new sequence each time allowed the same approach to be observed for the first few moves of each of the Junro katas, as the puzzle was unwrapped by Nick Sensei. Speed and power were then amplified once students were confident with the sequence and able to make the adjustments needed to connect the pieces together, all the while relying on their internal compass to hopefully point them in the appropriate direction.


Nick Sensei had engaged students brain power and demonstrated how this, coupled with relaxed fluid movements can give students the capacity to learn more involved combinations quickly and precisely with thoughtful instruction.


Students would then move to a kumite combination which began with a lunging kura-tsuki attack. Explaining the timing, Nick Sensei would give a clear blueprint for this and how it is different to a standard stepping punch. Immediate hand speed would offer a quick strike and if supported by efficient footwork could also allow the student to hit the target from a considerable distance. Both sides would then practice this in turn as the speed and intensity swelled.


A push would then be added after the kura tsuki to open the distance in the exchange. The student receiving the punch would then respond with gyaku-tsuki, again recruiting effective footwork to close the space and return the pressure to the initial attacker. The drill would end with this gyaku-tsuki being countered by a smooth kick, either yoko-geri kekomi or ura-mawashi. Nick Sensei was always keen for students to ensure the intensity and full commitment of the technique imitated an unpredictable exchange to train reflexes and reactions appropriately. Nick Sensei maintained an absorbing atmosphere throughout his lesson which is taught with a light-hearted nature, however the ability to “switch on” is never far away as Nick Sensei thrives on presenting at full speed, leading the students by example and out of their comfort zone. After student had navigated to maximum intensity, Nick Sensei had one more gift up his sleeve.


Students would remain with a single partner to begin with and complete three gyaku-tsukis concurrently, striking each other with rhythm, speed and a front foot movement. The drill would be expanded with students changing sides before repeating with the other hand. Nick Sensei had perfectly tempered the eagerness of the students as the drill morphed into a multi-student affair. Teams of five or six would perform the sequence in a line-up with three punches on each side before the next partner took their place. Each student would have the pleasure of at least a minute at the head of the line as the partners queuing set a blistering pace which the team tried to preserve as time progressed. It was a fantastic end to a varied lesson covering many significant training points and ideas for students to enjoy.


A short break had been well earned before Geoff Dixon Sensei, 6th Dan JKS, headed the middle session. Many themes continued to be reinforced in Geoff Sensei’s lesson which began with some non-syllabus kihon exercises. Open hand techniques would be delivered in a refreshingly different manner, as Geoff Sensei guided students to an understanding of how kamae can be used strategically in a combat situation. Students would perform various shuto and haito open hand strikes within the familiar framework of kihon. Students advanced with these hand techniques in front stance before this rigid framework was removed and a partner introduced. This enabled Geoff Sensei to heighten the reality of the interaction and how these techniques can be employed.


Geoff Sensei, benefitting from his intricate dan-grade knowledge of aikido illustrated how the earlier kihon sequence could be adapted to disrupt an opponent’s balance and create openings for counter attacks, escapes or restraining techniques. Geoff Sensei instructs in a very engaging way, allowing students to both learn and be entertained, making for memorable course content valued by all students. Profiting from an understanding of different martial arts systems, Geoff Sensei was able to supplement many of the facets which can be found within karate kata, but which are not often practiced or clarified.


Students worked alongside a partner who was attacking to deftly evade the incoming attack and then enlist the help of the open hand technique done but a few minutes earlier. Working angles to the inside and outside, the defender utilised the preparation, bodyweight shifting, and timing points Geoff Sensei had covered. Students were cautioned to retain control of the situation to prevent a position where if this was relinquished, the defender had an ability to counter-attack being in an equal position to the aggressor.


The open hand techniques were then executed to carry the attacker’s momentum forwards, making them vulnerable and neutralising the danger of the attack. Geoff Sensei showed how maintaining good posture and control of oneself was key to be able to manipulate the opponent. These defensive strategies were then employed in a free-flowing combination with several partners. With the attacks being launched quickly from different angles of approach, the themes covered by Geoff Sensei had to be heeded to produce the desired result of physically commanding the opponent. The lucky central student within the drill was rotated and speed added to all parts as the students became acquainted with the refinements needed and which Geoff Sensei had demonstrated so imperiously.


The full, sophisticated sequence was later revealed by Geoff Sensei, to be a reference to the first half of the kata jion. This gave students a comprehensive look at how the lesson’s content could be applied to both punches and kicks. Geoff Sensei orchestrated the sequence to have a half-step counteract mae-geri, protection and disablement with a controlling block before a hiza-geri (knee strike), shuto-barai to deflect an attack before capitalising with a throw and teisho to the attacker’s elbow before continuing into a restraint position. Geoff Sensei had capped a highly intelligent and interesting lesson with a comprehensive test of the open hand techniques which dominated it.


The final third of the Christmas course was taken by Alan Sensei who treated those students grading to a definitive look at the kata Bassai-Dai. Alan Sensei showed a meticulous and mindful evaluation of the kata. The component parts were used by Alan Sensei to illustrate what the grading standard should be and how as students’ karate careers progress where they can upgrade their performance and insight into this landmark kata. The detail at both a minute and global level cannot be overstated, and Alan Sensei took time to consciously ensure the principal characteristics of the kata were crystal clear.


As Alan Sensei reviewed student’s performances, teaching points were raised which aided all students to place emphasis where the kata dictates. These coaching points bolstered the student’s understanding of why this kata is used to evaluate the basics which students should have grasped by shodan level. "No hips, no karate” was something which Alan Sensei alluded to whilst shining the spotlight on the importance of how to abide by this mantra and maximise the power that control of the hips and core can provide. The elimination of superfluous movement and awareness that this results from diligent and focused training was another key element of Alan Sensei’s lesson. Students were shown areas within the kata where these unnecessary movements are common and how to eradicate them. An educational and crucial lesson from Alan Sensei ended a brilliant course packed full of creativity, detail and practice and Alan Sensei wished everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year before many departed.


Those who remained for the grading showed an excellent attitude as the examiners looked on. A big congratulations to those that were successful and a huge thank you for the continuing support which makes these courses such as pleasure to attend and benefit from. Here is to more of the same in 2023!

Monday, December 4, 2023
Christmas Course report
Tuesday, October 17, 2023
October Black and Brown Belt Training
Monday, October 16, 2023
New JKS Club in Carlisle
Monday, September 4, 2023
Kagawa Shihans annual seminar
Monday, July 17, 2023
An amazing Summer Course!
Monday, June 5, 2023
June Black and Brown Belt Training
Friday, April 7, 2023
Fantastic Course with Makita Sensei
Monday, February 6, 2023
The 2023 JKS England squad is selected
Monday, December 5, 2022
The 2022 JKS England Christmas Course
Monday, September 5, 2022
Kagawa Shihan delivers on his return to England
Monday, June 20, 2022
June Black and Brown Belt Training
Sunday, March 6, 2022
JKS England Spring Course a great success
Monday, January 17, 2022
January Black and Brown Belt Training
Wednesday, January 12, 2022
Kūgun Shotokan Karate joins JKS England
Wednesday, December 1, 2021
Welcome Back Course a Resounding success!
Friday, April 23, 2021
Bunbu Dojo joins JKS England
Thursday, April 22, 2021
New dedicated karate dojo opens
Wednesday, April 7, 2021
5 Day Free Online course is a big hit!
Friday, January 1, 2021
Bristol Karate Academy joins JKS England
Tuesday, December 15, 2020
Somerset Ryū Karate joins JKS England
Monday, October 5, 2020
Milton Keynes Shotokan joins JKS England!
Monday, September 14, 2020
JKS England Online Course 13.09.2020
Wednesday, March 18, 2020
Supporting Karate Clubs Everywhere During Challenging Times
Monday, March 9, 2020
Kagawa Shihans Annual Visit
Monday, February 17, 2020
A great day in York
Tuesday, February 11, 2020
2020 JKS England squad selected
Monday, January 20, 2020
The first Black and Brown Belt course of 2020
Monday, January 6, 2020
New dojo for JKS in Luton
Monday, December 9, 2019
A Fantastic Christmas course ends 2019
Monday, November 25, 2019
Another addition to the JKS England coaching team
Monday, November 18, 2019
The JKS England Nationals 2019
Wednesday, October 30, 2019
Autumn Course Report
Friday, September 27, 2019
New addition to the JKS England coaching setup
Monday, September 23, 2019
New Club for JKS England!
Wednesday, September 18, 2019
Inspiring Black and Brown Belt Training
Monday, September 16, 2019
Success at the BKF International Open
Tuesday, September 3, 2019
Amazing success for JKS England squad
Friday, July 26, 2019
Best ever results at the EKF Nationals
Friday, July 26, 2019
Superb Summer Course
Wednesday, June 26, 2019
Inspirational weeks training with Nagaki Sensei
Monday, June 10, 2019
Excellent Black and Brown Belt Training
Thursday, June 6, 2019
BKF success for the JKS England squad
Friday, April 26, 2019
Hoole Martial Arts Karate School join JKS England
Thursday, April 18, 2019
Yet another great Black and Brown belt course
Tuesday, March 26, 2019
An unforgettable course with Kagawa Shihan
Tuesday, February 19, 2019
York course review
Thursday, January 17, 2019
The first Black and Brown Belt course of 2019
Monday, December 17, 2018
A Great day at the 2018 Christmas Course
Monday, December 3, 2018
The JKS England Nationals 2018
Monday, October 22, 2018
Inspirational Seminar with Kanayama Sensei
Wednesday, October 10, 2018
Success at the International Banzai Cup
Thursday, September 27, 2018
Amazing Results at the BKF International Open
Monday, September 17, 2018
September Black and Brown Belt Training
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Torbay Karate Club joins JKS England
Tuesday, August 14, 2018
Superb Summer Camp
Tuesday, July 3, 2018
Five Golds, Two Silver and Ten Bronze at the Central England Open Championships
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
Superb day for the squad in Cumbria
Monday, June 4, 2018
June Black and Brown Belt Training
Thursday, May 31, 2018
BKF success for the JKS England squad
Monday, April 30, 2018
Masayoshi Karate Club London joins JKS England
Tuesday, April 17, 2018
Great medal haul for JKS England at the EKF Nationals
Friday, April 13, 2018
Black and Brown Belt Training a big success
Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Spectacular Spring Course with Kagawa Shihan
Friday, February 23, 2018
Great Day in York
Thursday, January 25, 2018
Hisham Saif and the Al-Ghazali Karate Club of Liverpool join JKS England
Friday, January 19, 2018
Black and Brown belt training kicks off the 2018 schedule
Thursday, December 14, 2017
2017 Ends on a high with the annual Christmas Course
Tuesday, December 12, 2017
The JKS England Nationals 2017
Thursday, October 19, 2017
Matsue Sensei delivers an extraordinary seminar
Tuesday, October 17, 2017
Success at the BKF International Open
Wednesday, October 4, 2017
Great training at September's Black and Brown belt course
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
JKS England top the medals in Europe
Friday, August 25, 2017
Another great Black and Brown Belt course with Open squad training
Monday, August 14, 2017
The Karate-a-Thon is Back!
Friday, July 28, 2017
Inspiring JKS Summer Course
Wednesday, June 28, 2017
A hot week in June with Toyama Sensei
Wednesday, June 28, 2017
Fantastic Day at the Kyu Grade Championships
Friday, June 23, 2017
7 Gold, 7 Silver and 12 Bronze medals at the Cumbrian Open
Friday, June 16, 2017
A tough day of karate at the June Black and Brown belt course
Monday, June 12, 2017
JKS the top English team at the BKF 4 Nations
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Great day at the JKS Novice Champs
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Chikara Karate Club back in JKS
Thursday, April 13, 2017
Excellent results for JKS England at the EKF Nationals
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
April's Black and Brown belt Training
Monday, March 20, 2017
Spectacular Spring Seminar with Kagawa Shihan
Wednesday, March 8, 2017
Coming Soon: Online Membership Services
Monday, March 6, 2017
A great two days in York
Monday, February 13, 2017
22 Medals for JKS England at the Yorkshire Open Karate Championships
Friday, February 10, 2017
Nine JKS England members complete Japanese Kangeiko
Wednesday, January 18, 2017
The first Black and Brown belt training of 2017 is a success
Wednesday, January 11, 2017
2017 JKS England Squad Selected
Monday, December 19, 2016
A reflection on the year that was 2016
Sunday, December 11, 2016
2016 Ends on a high for JKS England with the annual Christmas course
Monday, November 28, 2016
The JKS England Nationals 2016
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
Shotojuku Karate club joins JKS England
Monday, October 31, 2016
An unforgettable weekend with Koji Arimoto
Wednesday, October 5, 2016
Excellent turnout for a Tekki masterclass
Thursday, September 29, 2016
The JKS World Championships 2016 - A Bird’s Eye View
Wednesday, September 14, 2016
One Gold, One Silver and Two Bronze for Wales at the JKS World Championships!
Monday, September 12, 2016
England Second on the medal table at the JKS World Championships!
Monday, September 5, 2016
Good Luck to England!
Sunday, August 21, 2016
Great Black and Brown belt Course
Tuesday, July 26, 2016
The 2016 Summmer Course is the largest ever yet again
Monday, July 4, 2016
Wales join England in the medals at the Central England Open
Sunday, July 3, 2016
Massive Medal Haul at the Central England Open
Monday, June 13, 2016
A great day at the latest Black and Brown belt training
Sunday, June 12, 2016
JKS England bring home the medals in Cumbria
Sunday, May 29, 2016
Best ever results at the BKF 4 Nations
Monday, May 23, 2016
Cotgrave Shotokan Karate Club joins JKS England
Sunday, May 1, 2016
Novice Tournament is the best ever
Monday, April 18, 2016
Big Medal Haul at the EKF Nationals
Tuesday, April 12, 2016
JKS England Team in Dubai
Monday, April 4, 2016
Record turnout for the latest Black and Brown belt training
Friday, March 11, 2016
Its a Sell out for Kagawa Shihan Seminar
Monday, February 29, 2016
Great day at the JKS England Squad Competition
Wednesday, February 24, 2016
Course and Dan Grading in York
Friday, January 22, 2016
The first Black and Brown belt course of 2016
Friday, January 15, 2016
2016 JKS England Squad Selected
Wednesday, December 16, 2015
JKS England ends the year with a superb Christmas Course
Monday, December 14, 2015
Eight JKS England Senior members in Japan
Wednesday, November 18, 2015
Superb evening course in Leeds with Matsue Sensei
Wednesday, November 18, 2015
Superb evening course in Leeds with Matsue Sensei
Wednesday, November 11, 2015
The JKS England Nationals 2015
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
Good luck to Emelye
Monday, November 9, 2015
New club in Kent
Monday, October 26, 2015
World Champion Weekend is a Hit!
Monday, October 19, 2015
Productive weekend for JKS England squad members
Thursday, October 1, 2015
Great Black and Brown belt session
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
The JKS England team at the WKF Budapest Open
Monday, September 7, 2015
Fifteen medals at the BKF International Open!
Monday, August 24, 2015
The 2015 Summer Course is the busiest ever held
Tuesday, July 21, 2015
Yet another successful Black and Brown Belt training
Friday, July 10, 2015
Success at the Central England Open Championships
Tuesday, June 30, 2015
Makita Sensei is on superb form in Oxfordshire
Tuesday, June 30, 2015
The second York course of 2015 is successful one
Friday, June 19, 2015
Yet another huge medal haul for JKS England at the Cumbrian Open
Sunday, June 7, 2015
Happy Birthday to Kagawa Shihan!
Wednesday, June 3, 2015
The latest Black and Brown belt course was a huge success
Friday, May 29, 2015
Another Big thank you to Paul Brant
Friday, May 29, 2015
Superb results for the JKS England team at the BKF 4 NATIONS Championships
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Yet another superb JKS Novice tournament
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
JKS England Fundraiser is a great success
Thursday, April 23, 2015
JKS record best ever results at the EKF Nationals
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
Another huge turnout for the latest Black and Brown belt training
Thursday, April 9, 2015
A Big thank you to Paul Brant
Thursday, April 9, 2015
Massive turnout in Bolton for Yamaguchi Sensei
Monday, March 30, 2015
Success for JKS England referees
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Help raise £1,000 for the JKS England Squad through the purchase of a fantastic new CD
Monday, March 9, 2015
Inspiring Spring Seminar with Kagawa Shihan
Thursday, March 5, 2015
Huge turnout in York for course with Alan Campbell and Shinji Nagaki
Friday, February 27, 2015
New JKS club in North Yorkshire
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
Over sixty JKS England members complete the Karate-A-Thon
Tuesday, February 17, 2015
The 2015 Annual Japan trip is an unforgettable experience
Tuesday, February 3, 2015
Some superb performances at the JKS England Squad Competition
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
Tickets now available for the Stars in their eyes Fundraiser
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
The first Black and Brown belt training of 2015 is a success
Wednesday, January 14, 2015
The 2nd JKS Stars in their eyes Fundraiser
Monday, January 12, 2015
2015 JKS England Squad Selected
Monday, December 15, 2014
Ninety Students gather in Nottingham for the annual JKS Christmas course
Friday, December 12, 2014
Senior Instructor joins JKS
Friday, December 12, 2014
A big thank you to Kaizen No-Michi karate club in Grimsby
Friday, December 12, 2014
JKS England Sensei travel to Japan
Friday, November 21, 2014
A sell-out special evening course in Abingdon with Matsue Sensei
Friday, November 21, 2014
English Team Selected for the 2015 JKS World Championships
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
The last Black and Brown belt training of the year proves popular
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
The 2014 JKS English Open Championships are a great success
Thursday, October 30, 2014
Two more Norfolk based instructors join JKS England
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Traditional Karate and Fitness of Norfolk join JKS England
Thursday, October 23, 2014
A great day of interesting and intriguing Karate from Alan Campbell Sensei and Jan Spatzek Sensei
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
England Squad have their best ever day at the JKS Scotland National Championships
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Autumn Technical Seminar highlights JKS England talent
Monday, October 6, 2014
Another Positive step in the Referee Development Programme
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Yet another fabulous black and brown belt training session in Nottingham
Monday, September 29, 2014
Superb performance by JKS England at the BKF International Open
Friday, September 19, 2014
Great turnout in Lincoln for a fantastic course with Nagaki sensei
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
England records its best ever results at the JKS European Championships
Tuesday, August 26, 2014
The 2014 JKS England Summer Camp is the biggest yet
Thursday, August 21, 2014
Red Tiger Karate Club joins JKS England
Thursday, August 14, 2014
The latest black and brown belt training proves popular
Saturday, July 26, 2014
Kanayama Sensei teaches his first course in York for 20 years
Wednesday, July 9, 2014
A great day for JKS at the Central England Open Karate Championships
Thursday, June 26, 2014
Great turnout for the Open course and Grading at York
Thursday, June 26, 2014
Huge medal haul for JKS England at the Cumbrian Open
Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Inspiring Course with Paolo Bolaffio in Nottingham
Tuesday, June 10, 2014
JKS England Squad Fund Raising Event - The Knaresborough Bed Race 2014
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Strong turnout for Black and Brown Belt Training
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
Two Golds for JKS England at the BKF 4 Nations
Wednesday, May 14, 2014
A great day for JKS England at the Northern Open Classic in Warrington
Thursday, May 8, 2014
Novice Tournament again proves to be a fantastic event
Thursday, May 8, 2014
Success at the Second Free Referee, Judge and Table Recorder Course of the year
Tuesday, April 22, 2014
English Team Selected for the JKS European Championships
Wednesday, April 2, 2014
JKS England squad record best results to date at the EKF Nationals
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Inspiring course with Yamaguchi Sensei in Leeds
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Black and Brown Belt Training a big success
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
JKS England Squad Success at the Swedish Open
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Kagawa Sensei takes memorable course in Walsall
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Huge Turnout for Two-Day York Course
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
JKS Youngsters Shine in Nottingham
Monday, February 10, 2014
JKS Squad Competition results
Wednesday, February 5, 2014
The first Free JKS England Referee, Judge and Table Recorder Course is a great success
Thursday, January 30, 2014
LKA Raise funds for the JKS England Squad
Monday, January 13, 2014
2014 JKS England Squad Selected
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
A big thank you to Crystal Peaks Shotokan Karate Club
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
JKS England end 2013 with a successful Christmas Course in Nottingham
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Congratulations to Emelye O'Brien on making the EKF National Team
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Matt Price Sensei recognised at the UK Coaching Awards
Tuesday, December 3, 2013
JKS England Team selected to compete in the Swedish WKF International Open
Thursday, November 28, 2013
Geoff Dixon and the Grantham Shotokan Karate Club join JKS England
Sunday, November 24, 2013
The 2013 JKS English Championships are a HUGE success
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Special Evening Course with Takuya Makita
Monday, November 11, 2013
Sold-Out Black & Brown Belt Course on Remembrance Sunday
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Enlightening & Rewarding Technical Seminar with Steve Ubl Sensei, 7th Dan
Monday, September 30, 2013
Open Course Enjoyed at JKS Harrow
Thursday, August 1, 2013
JKS England Members from Leeds Karate Academy Enjoy Dan Grade Success in Tokyo
Sunday, July 28, 2013
JKS England Team Success at 2013 World Championships in Tokyo, Japan
Monday, July 1, 2013
Ben Richardson and the Can Do Martial Arts Academy join JKS England
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Walsall Karate Dojo Official Opening Course with Takashi Yamaguchi 7th Dan JKS
Thursday, May 23, 2013
Welcome to Alistair Mitchell 7th Dan
Monday, April 15, 2013
JKS Brecon joins the JKS
Friday, December 21, 2012
Paul Allison 4th Dan and his Shidokan Karate Club joins JKS England