KSKA AKI-Gasshuku in Berlin / Germany

10.-12. October 2008

About 70 Members and guests from 17 countries followed the invitation to the KSKA Aki-Gasshuku 2008 in Berlin. The members and guests were from the following countries: Sweden, Finland, Scotland, England, Ireland, Poland, Germany, France, Belgium, Portugal, Israel, Slovenia, Serbia, Kuwait, Greece and Lebanon.

Aki-Gasshuku 08 Berlin

Group photo

At the beginning of the stage, the President of Kase-Ha Germany and Shihan-Kai member Pascal Petrella welcomed everybody to the KSKA Gasshuku in Berlin Germany. The seminar was organised by the Kase Karate-Do Berlin. The course, the location in Hoppegarden (former East-Berlin) and transport service were excellently organised. We all thank the KKD Berlin for the excellent organisation and hospitality. Also a great thank you to the KSKA-Shihan-Kai for the excellent training, which reflected all facets of Budo and Karate-Do.

First Training Friday Evening

Sensei Velibor Dimitrijevic (Vebo) took the first session on Friday. He laid the ground stone for the whole weekend seminar with exercises for rooting and the development of inner power and abdominal breathing.

Sensei Vebo with Tate-Uke

Anette and Lotta from Sweden

"Where do you want to be in 5 years?
In our level we must develop inner power and strength,
otherwise the time spend for training is wasted!"

Quote Sensei Velibor Dimitrievic

First we started with tachi-kata (foot work) where we supposed to focus only on our rooting and stability of our position. Kai-shi forward and backward, zugi-ashi forward and backward, tai-sabaki kai-ashi and zugi-ashi were the first exercises. In a second step we had to add attacking and blocking techniques.

Senseis Miguel & Rainaldo from Portugal, Dirk Heene & Pascal Lecourt

Sensei Petrella with Tate-Uke

Tachi kata Fudo-Dachi

Sensei Velibor put a lot of emphasis on very basic technical points like:

Straight after the training many of the participants went to a Chinese Restaurant, the "Kaiser-Palast". The food was really excellent. Some of the members had after the dinner a "good-night beer at the hotel bar.

Saturday morning

On Saturday the training got as usual split in members (3rd dan and above) and non members.

Sensei Jim from Scotland held the first session with the KSKA members. The theme of his training was on open hand kumite combinations with setei and hentei counter attacks as well as kicks as counter attacks.

Sensei Jim with Shuto-Barai

Sensei Lecourt and Sensei Vebo

Senseis Miguel & Rainaldo from Portugal

Sensei Fisher from Scotland & Sensei Mike

Irish Karateka

Sensei Dirk in Action with sensei Arie from Israel

Sensei Lecourt with Ura-Mawashi-Geri

A karata from Belgium and Nico from Germany in action

Sensei Jim explaining some application to Anti from Finland
and our treasurer sensei Alan Armstrong

Sensei Pascal Petrella took the lower belts and built up on the topics sensei Velibor discussed on Friday. Additionally to rooting exercises sensei Pascal also discussed some exercises for abdominal breathing.

Frank Marczinek from Germany with a Polish karateka

Sensei Pascal Petrella demonstrates basic kumite with Benoît from France

Sensei Arie Farkash from Israel

Rooting and breathing had then to be applied in basic closed hand blocks with hentei-setei counter, first in hanmi-dachi then in fudo-dachi. The basic 1st dan 8 blocks closed hand kihon had then to be applied in kumite. In many repetitions and partner changes the students had the change to test their blocking abilities, supported by a stable position and additionally work on timing.

"Timing is one of the most important points in kumite.
Without excellent timing you can not win a fight!
You must see, but in a higher level you must sense
the thought of your opponent, that he wants to attack you,
this is sen-no-sen!"

Quote Sensei Pascal Petrella

After a 2 hours break, where the members of KKD-Berlin served soup out side the dojo, the participants could enjoy the autumn sun and the beautiful colours of the leaf in the trees.

Saturday afternoon

The lower belt had training with sensei Mike Fedyk. His topic was open and closed hand kumite combinations, where the defender had to move in different directions during the blocking and counter sequences. The combinations where mentally quite demanding and everybody enjoyed the session.

Sensei Mike with Tate-Uke

Sensei Mike with some applications

Sensei Mike explaining some principles

The members had the second session with sensei Dirk Heene. His topic was energy flow and energy connection derived from the Ten-Chi-Jin. One must create harmony between the cosmic energy, the earth and the human itself.

"One must create harmony between the cosmic energy, the earth and the human itself.
Ten - Chi - Jiin"

Quote Sensei Dirk Heene

Sensei Dirk with Wadonshin exercises

Wadoanshin exercises

Shihan Dirk started the session with Wanshuan Tai-Chi exercises to develop chi (ki, energy flow) in our bodies. He explained that this kind of knowledge got lost before and during the WW II, because everything which came fro China was bedeviled by the Japanese Government. That is why they changed the meaning form China Hand to Empty hands (Kara-te) and also many kata names got changed during that time. Sensei Dirk Heene showed us many examples in different katas where this kind of energy exercises occur, like the first movement in kata Kanku-Dai, or the movements in kata Empi (Taisho blocks and attacks), where the Ten-Chi-Jin connection was really obvious. After the tai-Chi exercises we practised kata Empi, first slow in sequences and then fast.

Anti from Finland in Enpi

Front left Greg from Kuwait

Sensei Dirk shows some Bunkai

Enpi - flight of a swallow - very deep ...

... and very high senseis Lecourt and Vebo

After each sequence we did also bunkai for the particular part of the kata. Sensei Heene explained many important points of kata Empi, also keeping in mind that this kata should also activate the energy meridians in our body.

Berlin Sight Seeing Tour

A bus tour through Berlin was offered by the organising committee, and nearly all members took the opportunity to do this guided sightseeing tour with a double decker bus through Berlin.

On Saturday evening we all were invited to the gala dinner at our Hotel Hoppegarden, were we finally had the time to chat with karateka from all over Europe. Of course some ended after the dinner at the cellar bar.

Impressions from the dinner

Sensei Vebo chats with students from Kuwait and Belgium

Impressions from the dinner

Sensei Dave & Lauren from UK talking about a trip to Okinawa to Ljubo from Slovenia

The last session on Sunday morning was held by sensei Pascal Lecourt.

He started his session with closed hand hentei/setei combinations from hanmi dachi followed by open hand hentei/setei combinations with open hand, where the preparation for the following techniques where gedan or jodan. But even in hanmi dachi it is important to have a strong and stable position, pushing the body into the ground. Rooting, rooting, rooting  After the kihon we did Heian Jodan omote and afterwards moving in 45° angles.

Sensei Lecourt with Gedan Barai

Senseis Gerhard und Alex from Germany

... rooting is very important for developing power

Sensei Pascal with shuto barai to Benoît

Sensei Lecourt with Tate Tsuki

Counter attack with ura-mawashi geri

Sensei Dirk and Sensei Mario from Germany

After kihon and kata we did some closed and open hand kumite combinations moving I different directions, even going with a 180° mawate into the opponent to break his attack. And like sensei Jims training we did also some deai geris as counter attacks. Sensei Lecourt emphasised, that we have to practice more seriously, with Hikken Issatzu in mind. Every block and every counter attack must break your opponent.

"Karate must be reality,
You must be sure when you hit,
your opponent must be kaput."

Quote Sensei Pascal Lecourt

At the end of the stage the organising committee lead by Frank Marczinek and Thortsen Heiber from Berlin handed over some presents to the the shihankai members.

Thorsten from KKD Berlin thanks sensei Dirk

At this point we would like to thank again the organising dojo, Kase Karate Do Berlin and Kase Ha Germany for their excellent organisation and the especially the pick-up service from the airport and last but not least the members of the shihan kai for their training. See you next year in France!

Karateka from Irland

Karateka from Israel

A Karateka from Lebanon

Karateka from Poland

Karateka from Portugal

Karateka from Schottland

Ljubo Jaworsek from Slovenia

Karateka from Sweden

Karateka from UK

Karateka from Germany

Karateka from Belgium

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