While there were things that happened in the world during 2017 that were not so great, when I look back at what we accomplished with IMOK, LLC and Shin Gi Tai Wisconsin I’d have to say it was pretty amazing! Personally, I started off the year by receiving my 3rd Dan certificate from SRKDI.
In January, we started off strong by adding a new class in weapons as a supplement to our empty hand work for adults and advanced juniors. We also added more pre-k options throughout the year with another class starting January 6, 2018 in Jefferson.
We had 3 students earn black belts during 2017, Morgan and Zach earned their adult black belts in March and December respectively. Logan earned her junior black belt in May.
Over the spring and summer, IMOK worked with PADA doing 3 free self-defense in the park workshops in Jefferson, Waterloo and Fort Atkinson as well as a demonstration during PADA’s Walk a Mile Family Fun Event in Lake Mills. IMOK also participated in Fort HealthCare’s Camp 911.
September kept us busy with 2 community events. The Fort Atkinson Continuing 2 students put on a demonstration at the Fall Fiesta. The Jefferson students participated in the Gemuetlichkeit Parade in Jefferson.
The dojos raised money for charity in October with t-shirt fundraiser and the Jefferson dojo performed kata to raise money to fight childhood cancer. The money raised was presented to UW American Family Children’s Hospital. The t-shirt fundraiser contributed to this charity as well as for the Susan G. Komen foundation.
We had visitors to our dojos as well. In April, our founder, Kyoshi Brad Wells paid us a visit. It was the first time the Jefferson students got to meet and work with him. He worked with the kids on some of our favorite drills. In November, we hosted a seminar with Sensei Jerry Figgiani, founder and present of Shorin Ryu Karatedo International. Sensei worked with children and adults. We had a meet and greet light workout with the adults on Friday night with a children’s seminar on Saturday morning followed by a seminar for teens and adults. We worked hard, but had so much fun! It was Sensei’s first time visiting Wisconsin. Sensei Figgiani was accompanied by Sensei Michael Borreca (a/k/a Sensei Selfie-stick).
2017 also brought a new dojo to the Shin Gi Tai Wisconsin/IMOK, LLC family – Cambridge CAP! Classes began October 30 on Monday and Wednesday evenings at Cambridge Elementary School. These wonderful kids and their families are a welcome addition! I look forward to seeing them grow in 2018 and beyond.
We finished the year with workshops for the adults and 2 tournaments for the kids. We had our first annual kata tournament and our 2nd annual sparring tournament. Everyone worked hard and did a great job! The adults participated in workshops in takedowns and grappling as well as kata and applications. I really enjoy these workshops and tournaments. They are open to members of all 3 locations and are held at the Fort Atkinson dojo.
Wow! That’s a lot of really positive activities and I’m sure I’m forgetting a few. 2018 promises to be even better. We continue to grow – we’ve just added an open class for Saturday mornings in Jefferson. (Join us!) We will continue to participate in community events. We have one coming up in Cambridge on January 14 at noon. Come visit me and the Cambridge students at the Cambridge Health & Wellness Expo!
To all my students and families – THANK YOU for making 2017 and awesome year! I know 2018 is going to rock as you students grow in your knowledge in all aspects of karate. Be proud of everything you have accomplished and stay positive! When in doubt, be kind and follow the dojo kun.
Our dojo kun – per Kyoshi Brad Wells
Be respectful and courteous.
Always put forth your best effort.
Be patient with yourself and others.
Be sincere and grateful.
Do not lose self control or act in a violent manner.