Under the leadership of Sensei Jerry Figgiani, SRKDI yudansha traveled to Okinawa in July 2015, where they visited many cultural sites and trained in the Tokashiki Dojo. This weeklong Shorin Ryu adventure included visits to such historical sites as Shurijo Castle, Nakagusuku Castle, and two Peace Memorial Parks honoring the brave military and civilian souls lost during WWII and celebrating worldwide peace. On the first day of the adventure, SRKDI members had the distinct honor of paying respects to the late Taba Sensei by burning incense at his family shrine and visiting his gravesite. These memories will last a lifetime!
The training was mind blowing. After site seeing, the yudansha bused over to the Tokashiki Dojo to train under Senseis Tamaki and Tokashiki. Each day involved several hours of hard training, focusing on specific training goals: kihon, basic and advanced kata, bo kihon, and bo kata. Each yudansha entered the dojo with great anticipation, and each left exhausted yet exhilarated, filled with new knowledge to inform their training upon returning home. Training in Okinawa under the highest-ranking Shorin Ryu senseis is an experience that cannot be accurately described in words. It must be experienced individually.
The trip culminated in a form of karate gift-giving in which each practitioner offered the gift of kata, performing his or her favorite kata before the whole assembly. Then, the SRKDI yudansha were presented with his or her own dan rank certificate from Sensei Takeshi Tamaki, and it was announced that Tamaki Sensei is now the official Technical Director for SRKDI. What an honor and a privilege to be guided by the most senior student to come out of the Nagamine Dojo.
All SRKDI member yudansha have the opportunity to train in Okinawa at the Tokashiki Dojo and to receive a cross-rank certificate from Tamaki Sensei. For more information, please contact Sensei Jerry Figgiani.
Post reporting by Sensei David S. Hogsette.