Successful Testing by Chris Felicetti

Congratulations to Chris Felicetti on his successful testing for 8th kyu. Keep working hard on the basics. The hardest part is getting through the door, the rest takes care of itself. Well done!

Successful Testing for Shodan

Congratulations to Mary Ann Heinzen-Hackett on her successful promotion to Shodan on Thursday, February 22, 2024. She performed all kata, bunkai, and yakusoku kumite successfully as well as passing her oral examination. Well done! Keep working hard!

Successful Testing

Congratulations to Haydee Temple and Corey Fougner on their successful promotion tests. Corey was promoted to 8th kyu (green tips) and Haydee to 4th kyu (brown tips). Well done both of you. Keep working hard on the basics!

Successful Testing

Luci Goldberger (front left) and Patrick Dole (front right) successfully tested for 4th Kyu

Congratulations to Patrick Dole and Luci Goldberger on their successful testing for 4th kyu (brown tips). Good focus on the basics, and understanding of the kata. Keep working hard!

Successful Testing for Sandan

On Saturday, July 22, Joseph Russillo and John Thibodeau successfully tested for third degree black belt—Sandan. We congratulate them. Keep training hard—the work and the committment is shining through!

A trip to Okinawa

From November 7th through the 20th, I had the chance to once again visit Okinawa. This was my third trip to the island, and I was grateful for the opportunity to explore some of the key karate-related sites in Naha, partake in delicious and traditional food, most importantly, to train with Taira Yoshitaka Sensei, Arakaki Toshimitsu Sensei, Tome Iwao Sensei, and Makishi Tetsuo Sensei.

My first week there, while staying near the Tsubogama monorail station, I was in walking distance to the central Naha Bus Station, and enjoyed exploring the city through the public transportation system. With training sessions each morning at 10 am, and each evening at 8 pm, and I often walked across the city to the dojo, finding it easier to better understand the city in that manner. Each day I tried to find a new Soba, Ramen, or Sushi restaurant for lunch while exploring the many shops and markets on my way.

The second week there, I was joined by four European members of the WMKA, Steve and Sally Wooston, Heinz Tessner, and Joel Castasus, and we trained together in the morning and evenings, and enjoyed visiting the Karate Kaikan, the Budokan, and especially the recently unveiled memorial monument to Osensei Shoshin Nagamine. The training was fantastic, and I spent every evening writing notes and reviewing what we had explored in that day’s sessions.

In particular our training focused on all five of our upcoming dan grading tests, which were scheduled for Sunday, November 20. On Saturday, November 19, we had a final training, and were joined by twelve other Karate students from Mainland Japan who would be testing with us the following day. It was a wonderful experience to meet and train with these other visitors, and once again reinforced what a welcoming worldwide family the WMKA is.

Huge thanks go out to Riki Nomura sensei for all of his help in making this trip possible, and of course senseis Taira, Arakaki, Tome, and Makishi for their invaluable teaching, their deep knowledge, and their overwhelmingly kind welcome.