|Malcolm Phipps presenting Tony Bunting with his certificate|
|Stacey Barton, Malcolm Phipps, Tony Bunting and Paul Hazell|
|Claire, Gary, Sensei Phipps (a very proud Chief and Club Instructor) and Sam|
|Sensei Phipps and Sensei Hazard presented Sensei Adam Cockfield with his 4th Dan certificate for his successful grading the previous Wednesday.|
December 6th Sat… At the Association’s Dan Grading at the Hemel Hempstead dojo, the following were successful in passing their dan grades: Antony Bunting to Rokudan (6th Dan), Stacey Barton to Nidan (2nd Dan) and Paul Hazell to Nidan (2nd Dan).
Sensei Phipps gave a small speech before awarding Sensei Bunting with his 6th Dan certificate, thanking him for his fantastic support during Sensei Phipps’ illness and indeed since. Tony is a true, loyal and very respected instructor who is a credit to the Association and indeed a great friend. His grade is therefore thoroughly well-deserved. Stacey Barton and Paul Hazell both passed their Nidan grades in real style giving even more strength to the very powerful Hemel Hempstead dojo and indeed the Association as a whole.
September 27th Sat… Congratulations to Sensei Malcolm Phipps 7th Dan, our Chief Instructor, for being unanimously voted to the position of Chairman to the Shotokan Alliance at the meeting at the Holiday Inn, Reading on Saturday 27th September 2008 (we've had Chairman Mao, now we've got Chairman Mal!!!).
New SSKI Dan Grades… On Saturday 6th September at the Hemel Hempstead Honbu Dojo the following students passed their Dan Gradings: Shodan – Gary Richards, Sam Richards and Claire Cerins. Congratulations to these fine new shodans, which now gives the Honbu Dojo no less than twenty–five training Black–belts.
Sensei Dave Hazard 7th Dan Course… on Sunday 20th April at the Hemel Hempstead honbu dojo, SSKI students and their guests were treated to yet another absolutely brilliant Course by Sensei Hazard. Guests came from as far afield as Ramsgate, Norwich and Billingshurst to train with Sensei Hazard and this excellent Course made the journey worthwhile. In the junior session Sensei concentrated on the kata Heian Yondan, cleverly giving bunkai and partner work in the early part and then putting the kata together near the end of this session. In the senior session a similar idea was put into operation concentrating on the kata Jion which contained some very interesting oyo and bunkai. Another absolutely superb Course with Sensei Hazard and everyone looks forward to his return on the weekend of 20/21st of September to the Hemel Hempstead dojo. Sensei Phipps thanked Sensei Hazard at the end of the senior session for such a great day and then both Sensei Phipps and Sensei Hazard presented Sensei Adam Cockfield with his 4th Dan certificate for his successful grading the previous Wednesday.
Successful Yondan Grading… On Wednesday 16th April, under the watchful eye of Sensei Malcolm Phipps 7th Dan and Sensei Tony Bunting 5th Dan, Sensei Adam Cockfield passed his yondan (4th Dan) examination in real style. Adam had to perform a kata that had been given to him by the above panel, three months previously. The panel had chosen kata Meikyo to which Adam had to perform the kata in front of the panel and the senior class. Then, with four of his London club’s black-belts, had to show the panel the oyo/bunkai of the kata; Adam performed this once slowly and then once at full speed. Adam then went on to take a one and a half hour senior grade lesson in front of the panel. Adam also had to write a thesis on any subject pertaining to karate training and also a smaller thesis on the kata Meikyo; Adam’s chosen subject for his main thesis was ‘The Impact of Competition on Modern Shotokan Karate’. The whole grading was a huge success; both Sensei Malcolm and Sensei Tony commented that this was the very best yondan grading they had ever witnessed and has set a real benchmark for future participants. A grade which was really earned and not just given for a certain amount of time elapsing or any other such means. Adam is the very successful Association’s Coach and his London club is now a real force to be reckoned with, with eight excellent black–belts and a strong club below these yudansha. Well done, Adam, and well–deserved!