New Book Coming Soon–Training Ronin Style

The Covid-19 pandemic has introduced many new challenges in our daily lives, along with a new vocabulary: social distancing, sheltering in place, stay-at-home orders, telecommuting, just to list a few. As we all learn to negotiate a new normal, one characterized by increased caution, worry, and concern regarding health, lifestyle, and employment, martial artists must also reconsider their training priorities and practices. As we shelter in place, we should continue our personal martial arts training, anticipating the time we can return to our dojos to train with our senseis, dojo friends, and training partners.

David S. Hogsette, 4th Dan in Matsubayashi-ryu, 1st Dan in Shotokan, and lifetime member of SRKDI, has written a new book titled Training Ronin Style: Principles, Tips, and Strategies for Practical Martial Arts Training that provides multiple examples of how to train kihon, kata, and bunkai using various types of solo training strategies, including traditional kihon training, kata practice, shadow boxing, and impact training. This book also covers principles of warming up and cooling down, discussions of bunkai applications and how to train them in solo practice, and examples of cardio and strength training necessary to maintain fitness for fighting and self-defense.

Complete with step-by-step instructions and illustrations, this book promises to help all martial artists maintain your training at home, prepare you to return to the dojo after the pandemic, and establish a personal training routine that you can maintain after the shelter in place orders have been rescinded.

Stay tuned for more information and links to purchase Training Ronin Style: Principles, Tips, and Strategies for Practical Martial Arts Training.

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SRKDI 10th Anniversary Celebration a Hit!

On January 18-20, 2019, SRKDI celebrated its ten-year anniversary with a doshi kai style training marathon weekend, in memory of Sensei Joseph Carbonara who inspired and encouraged Sensei Jerry Figgiani to form Shorin Ryu Karate Do International back in 2009.

Sensei Joseph Carbonara

As Sensei Figgiani prepared for the weekend celebration and training session, he thanked the many students, colleagues, and friends who supported him from the very beginning: “As I get ready to start the kick off to the 10th anniversary of Shorin Ryu Karate Do International, I have to give thanks to the following people who were with me from day one: Senseis Nestor Ramos, Rick Kaufman, Kathleen Sauli, Silvio D’Onofrio, John Shanahan, Michael Borreca, Charles Barrett, Alfred R Andersen, and Arianne Douglas Bechel. Thank you all for your support and encouragement. Also, to my good friend Sensei Thomas Casale for the advice going into something I really didn’t want to do. I appreciate you all!”

SRKDI Yudansha in Okinawa

Of this dynamic commemorative training weekend, Sensei Rick Kaufman had this to say: “This past weekend, I was fortunate to participate in the 10th Year Doshi Kai of Shorin Ryu Karate Do International. Not only keeping the dream of Joseph Carbonara Sensei alive, but expanding and growing unity in the community of Shorin Ryu practitioners both at home and abroad, Jerry Figgiani Sensei has worked without political considerations to bring the essence of Okinawan karatedo to all who would participate. This past weekend’s celebratory training was an example of the endless possibilities and options that can be revealed with dedicated training.”

Senseis Tamaki and Tokashiki with Sensei Figgiani

SRKDI is fully sanctioned by our home dojo in Okinawa. Sensei Figgiani noted that our Okinawa family expressed full support for this celebratory training weekend: “Our 10th Anniversary has received a lot of support from our Okinawan family! Thank you Tokashiki Sensei, Makino Sensei, and Daiku San for your support and guidance in making this a success. A big thank you to Takeshi Tamaki Sensei who is the Chairman for Shorin Ryu Karate Do International!”

Training up the future!

With the guidance of Sensei Figgiani, the direction and encouragement from Okinawa, and the support of member dojos around the world, SRKDI will continue the precious heritage of Okinawan karate, sharing it with new members and practitioners from across the globe.

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Sensei Juan Queris Reviews Sensei Jerry Figgiani’s Winter Haven Budokai Seminar

To Shorin Ryu Karatedo International:

Sensei Juan Queris, with Winter Haven Budokai along with Michael Mitchell were honored to host a gathering of KarateDo Senseis and practitioners at the Doshi Kai held on March 12th, 2016 at the Budokai Headquarters in Winter Haven, Florida. The success of this event was due in large part to the support and participation of Sensei Jerry Figgiani, 8th Dan and practitioner of Matsubayashi Shorin Ryu. Sensei Figgiani came bearing many gifts. By far the greatest of these gifts was a wealth of knowledge in technique, style, and philosophy that has been passed down by various Senseis, just as it has been passed down from Instructor to student for centuries. Sensei Figgiani and his associates consider it their duty to continue in the spirit of this lineage by graciously sharing their knowledge of Shorin Ryu. They do so with honor, humility, and distinction.

Sensei Figgiani’s knowledge of the Martial Arts extends far beyond the Matsubayashi style and includes a background in various other systems such as Judo and Kobudo. This diverse background and open-minded approach delighted the many practitioners that benefitted from their participation in these dynamic Doshi Kai training sessions. A cornerstone of Sensei Figgiani’s philosophy seems to be that each student must adapt and embrace those aspects of training that best suits him/her as a practitioner. Martial Arts Styles and techniques are not a “one size fits all” science. A student must learn to apply the technique that best addresses a particular situation with appropriate modification. To this end, an eclectic and open-minded approach to training offers a practitioner a wider variety of options than would a more narrow approach. Sensei Figgiani’s open-minded approach embraces the strength and importance of a diverse background and creative application. This willingness to embrace diversity will help Shorin Ryu KarateDo International grow into a powerful and leading force for the advancement of the Martial Arts.

Sensei Queris, with over 50 years of experience as a Martial Arts practitioner and as Head Sensei and owner of the Winter Haven Budokai, is eternally grateful to Sensei Figgiani and his two assistants for their support of the Doshi Kai. We also deeply appreciate the respect and support their actions demonstrated towards his many dedicated students. Sensei Figgiani’s modern approach to an ancient art, keeping within the traditions of the art, was impressive and motivational to all of us. He and his associates left us with the confidence that our shared love for this ancient practice will effectively be passed on to our students for generations to come, just as it was passed on to us.

Fraternally Yours,

Sensei Juan Queris

Winter Haven Budokai

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Kyoshi Patrick Beaumont Reviews Sensei Jerry Figgiani’s Ireland Seminar

Kyoshi Patrick Beaumont wrote the following in response to Sensei Figgiani’s practical bunkai seminar held in Ireland, November 14-15 2015:

On behalf of Matsubayashi Shorin Ryu International, I would like to thank Jerry Figgiani Sensei of Shorin Ryu Karatedo International for a fabulous training weekend in Ireland on the 14th and 15th of November. Figgiani Sensei is one of a long list of instructors whom we have brought here over the years, but I would have to say he is one of the most open-minded teachers IJerry Ireland 2 have ever met. He is dedicated to preserving the old way of Shorin Ryu and promoting Shorin Ryu Karate in its best light.

His understanding and knowledge of the Shorin Ryu principles and applications were outstanding. His humble and easy going personality put everyone at ease. He ensured that everyone–from our youngest children to our most senior club members–thoroughly enjoyed the weekend. We all gained something beneficial and unique from these workshops.

This is the beginning of a long and lasting relationship.

Kyoshi Patrick Beaumont
Matsubayashi International

 

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Friendship Training Weekend

For the weekend of September 18-20, the World Shorin-Ryu Karate-Do Federation (WSKF) invited Sensei Jerry Figgiani to participate in a Kuro Obi Kai weekend (an advanced training session for 3rd Dan and above). Kyoshi Jeff Leistner and his wife Sensei Chris Leistner hosted this event at the Troy, Ohio, dojo. Sensei Figgiani was first inducted into the Kuro Obi Kai back in 1989. Traveling along with Sensei Figgiani were Sensei Kaufman, Sensei Borreca, and Sensei Barrett. Hanshi Frank Grant oversaw this training event.

The martial arts relationship and personal friendship between Hanshi Frank Grant and Sensei Jerry Figgiani itself has a rich history. Sensei Figgiani first met Hanshi Grant in Tipp City, Ohio, at the United States Shorin Ryu Nationals hosted by Hanshi Grant in 1988, and later that year, Hanshi Grant awarded Sensei Figgiani his Shodan rank in Matsubayashi-ryu.

This weekend of training strengthened this relationship and formed a bond between the WSKF and SRKDI to cooperate in strengthening and promoting Matsubayashi-ryu for the good of the style and the betterment of its practitioners. We look forward to a bright future of collaboration between the members and dojos of these two organizations, as we work together to promote and build the vision and values of Matsubayashi-ryu created by Master Shoshin Nagamine.

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Tamaki Sensei Named SRKDI Technical Director

Tamaki Sensei Teaching in the Tokashiki Dojo

Tamaki Sensei Teaching in the Tokashiki Dojo

It is a great honor to announce that Tamaki Sensei is now the official Technical Director of Shorin Ryu Karatedo International. Sensei brings amazing skills, knowledge, and history to the organization. Tamaki Sensei is the most senior student to come out of the Nagamine Dojo, and I look forward to working with him in the near future.

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Sensei Figgiani Receives 8th Dan Certificate

    Sensei Jerry Figgiani Receiving 8th Dan Certificate from Sensei Takeshi Tamaki

Sensei Jerry Figgiani Receiving 8th Dan Certificate from Sensei Takeshi Tamaki

On July 12, 2015, I was truly honored to receive an 8th Dan certificate from Takeshi Tamaki Sensei in Okinawa. This is definitely one of the highlights in my martial arts career.This honor culminated a week of training at the Tokashiki Dojo, in which we explored kihon, various kata, bo basics, and bo kata.

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SRKDI Yudansha Train in Okinawa

taba sensei home

SRKDI Yudansha at Taba Sensei’s Home

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!

surijo castle SRKDI selfie

At Surijo Castle

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.

kata practice

Kata Training in the Tokashiki Dojo

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.

 

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Sensei Jeff Mancilla Reviews Sensei Jerry Figgiani’s Training Workshops

Sensei Jeff Mancilla expressed these words of enthusiastic appreciation for Sensei Jerry Figgiani’s Practical Bunkai workshop held February 28, 2015, at the Omine Karate Dojo in San Bruno, California:

 

Jeff Mancilla ReviewFiggiani Sensei is a consummate martial artist. His karate skills are electric, and his knowledge of Matsubaysahi-ryu and Okinawan karate, in general, is very impressive. His instruction of two man flow drills and bunkai (which consists of seizing, grappling and throwing techniques) is not only lucid, but it is very practical and easy to follow. The flow drills and bunkai taught are a breakdown of practical kata applications which elicits true combat self defense. The seminars are non-intimidating, educational, and very fun.

 

For more information about inviting Sensei Jerry Figgiani to give a workshop in your dojo, please submit an e-mail via the form below:

 

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