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TaiChi Mark
TaiChi Mark's picture

Hi everyone

I am 40 now and live in Birmingham (England) but originally from London. Started karate 1990 achieving 2kyu in a couple of different styles but became put off as every time I moved basically had to start again with different clubs / styles and 2 I read Iain's KGM and it opened my mind to new ways of looking at things ( I.e. There was more than kick punch karate).

I now regard my base style as (practical) Ta Chi Chuan under Dan  Docherty (no grades in TCC) but also train  in JKD, have dabbled in Thai and grappling and am 1st Dan in Britsh Free Fighting ( v similar to Krav Maga). I have followed Iains work since though and never totally lost karate roots, especially power generation from the Shukokai and the work ethic, directness from the kyokushinkai. 

My main interest is making my traditional arts practical and relevant, relating to modern ideas of conditioning and self protection as expounded in this forum. Iain's approach and methods continue to motivate me and have a lot in common with how I train. Whilst nowhere near a master I have had enough  experience to judge what is useful, have been in quite a number sticky situations through work (I teach teenagers with severe learning difficulties and challenging behaviour)'and am definitely a big picture person, seeing common elements and principles between many martial arts.

Have followed the forum and podcasts for ages - there is a massive amount of collective expereince here! And will try to chip in with a few pennies worth I when have time.

Happy training- Mark

dhogsette's picture

Hello all,

My name is David Hogsette, and I'm currently in western Pennsylvania. I have yudansha rank in Matsubayashi Ryu and Shotokan. I run a small club through my local YMCA and have a handful of beginners training with me. The organization I belong to, Shorin Ryu Karatedo International, has a basic curriculum but also allows us great flexibility to develop our own elements into our curriculum. I'm focusing primarily on practical bunkai and self-protection, and I'm interested in joining WCA when the time is right. Looking forward to learning from each other. 



Adamp's picture

Hi all

I'm Adam i practice Shotokan Karate,previously i was practicing judo and i am happy been around martial artists. I am black belt 1st dan under the instructions of Sensei Tetsuo Ootake and  i want to explore Karate as a fighting tactic.

Generally i like music,bikes,trips,meditation and peace...


Lionel Froidure
Lionel Froidure's picture


I am french and practicing karate for 30 years. Former international fighter. Now, I am more on practical application, bio-mecanics and understanding principles. 

Also doing Arnis Kali, traditional style of Filipino martial art with sticks, knife and bare hands. 

Teaching Karate for 20 years now and still learning everyday. That's why I'm here, to learn and to share. 


PBolton's picture

Hello everyone, my name is Patricia and I'm from Wisconsin, USA. I practice Shotokan and Matsubayashi Shorin-ryu, teaching primarily Shotokan. I got my start about 20 years ago in kyuki-do. My focus is primarily self-protection, although sport is fun and I am enjoying learning weapons. Teaching is my full time job now and I love it. My goal is to learn as much as possible so I can share it with my students.

Jeremy_Rhynes's picture


Jeremy here, born and raised in South Texas, now living in Ohio.  I studied TKD for a brief stint in my youth, and dabbled off and on, mostly trying to remember what little I had learned until I joined the Marine Corps at 19, when "martial arts" took on a totally different meaning.  Fast forward another 10 years, and I started studying Matsubayashi Ryu for another brief stint, after which I moved to Goju Ryu, and there I've stayed.  For me, the greatest joy is in teaching, and I've been a personal fitness instructor and taught "Spinning" classes (now THAT will take the weight off!)  My dojo is primarily focused on community outreach, especially for low income and at-risk teenagers and children, which makes for a very rewarding (though trying) teaching experience.  Learning is my passion, and the wider range your knowledge covers, the more likely you are to find the right way to interact with a student.  I was only recently promoted to black belt, which is both exhilarating, and terrifying.  Now, now is when the hard part starts.

Stuart Akers
Stuart Akers's picture

Hello everyone (glad to be here, not just the forum, generally).

I'm 68, a 9th Dan Soke in Jujitsu, I started back in 1964/5 with Roy Stanhope in Bradford, then switched to Jujitsu under Charlles Mack and I've been training ever since, so you can do the maths.

Currently got an ongoing battle on my hands, I've had about 6 cancers (i've lost count) in the past 9 years and, shock horror,  the bladder cancer has returned, so more chemo to enliven my existance.

I must admit I'm becoming something of a reluctant expert on training while undergoing treatment, if anyone want to chat about cancer or has symptoms they're not sure about feel free to pm me.

OhioMike's picture

Hello all,

Just recently restarted Karate after a 20 year pause for university, marriage, mortgage, children, etc. etc. etc. Had a health scare this last winter and realized that if I did not restart I would be instead starting a slow decline.

Anyway, I made it to Shodan before I left for college. I studied an American derivative of Shotokan, heavily sporting based. Great people but the love of Kata that I have always had was viewed as an oddity. I have restarted in the same school as an assistant instructor (the free tution was hard to pass on) and have started the long process of convincing the senior instructor that bunkai is good. 

Interested in meeting anyone that is in the central Ohio area, please drop me a private message.  

Thanks, Mike

Barry O'Sullivan
Barry O'Sullivan's picture

Hi all I'm Barry O'Sullivan, 29 from NW London/Hertfordshire. Been a lurker on this forum for a little while but finally thought I'd buck my ideas up and start contributing! Love all martial arts with my main art being Shotokan Karate but I have also dabbled in Muay Thai and Boxing. I thought MT and boxing were great for competing and fitness but not for lifelong study like Karate-Do is. I took a 6 year break from Karate whilst I served in the 2nd Battalion the Royal Green Jackets although I still did my own training when I could. I left the army in 2009 and been interested in practical karate ever since. Got all Iains books and a lot of his DVD's. Also like the work of VInce Morris, John Titchen, Andi Kidd and even Master Wong! Look forward to having a great chat with you all and continuing to learn. Thanks for reading, all the best :)

Azato's picture

Hey everyone,

My name is Daniel Marino and I own a school in Southeastern Pennsylvania. I have been practicing Tang Soo Do for 16 years and have recently taken an active interest in practical bunkai. Whenever sensei Abernethy is on the East coast I try to make it out to his seminars. Been to 4 of them so far. I will do my best to contribute to discussions here but as I still consider myself a beginner I will most likely be just observing. Thanks!

Jeremy McLean
Jeremy McLean's picture

New guy here! Been lurking for awhile and just attended Iain's seminar in Franklin, NC. Been a martial artist for going on 23 years now. With my current focus being shotokan and its practical roots. I have shodan in "American" karate and 5th kyu in shotokan. Exposed to lots of other stuff over the years....BJJ, ww2 combatives, escrima, kickboxing, etc. Glad to be part of the forum!

Alex Morris
Alex Morris's picture

Hello everyone,

I have been training in karate, with a couple of breaks, since I was 9 years old ( I'm now 30). The core style I train in is wado ryu, I have also trained in kyokushin and more recently shotokan. Most of the training I have done has been sport karate but, after having a two to three year break from regular training, I've spent the last year focusing on practical karate.

I have always loved kata and always felt there was more to it than the occasional run through in lessons with one or two applications. When I started training again last year I discovered Iain Abernethy work and decided that's what I wanted to focus on. I am in the process of building a library of books and dvds to improve my knowledge and training.

I'm sure I will learn a lot from everyone on here.

Les Bubka
Les Bubka's picture

Hi to all members

My name is Les i'm training nearly 20 years Shin ai do karate, got experense in Olimpc Wrestling, since 2007 resident in Unitede Kingdom  and running small dojo in Guildford. 

Kind regards Les Bubka

Evening artist
Evening artist's picture

Hi All,

My name is Omar.

I have trained in various Martial Arts since the age of 12 or so. I started off with Jujitsu, then changed to Karate (Shotokan) and, more recently, Taekwondo (ITF). I've also delved into a couple of other arts, such as Aikido and kickboxing. It's only recently that I have discovered the practical side of training and am interested in the Patterns/kata and how they can be interpreted. I am a member of the NWTKD association, based in Preston, England and have been since 2012.

pfidler's picture

Hi Everyone My name's Paul from Chester, UK. Ive practised Shotokan with Bukonkai Karate International since 1996. I had a break for a few years whilst at uni (where i studied Goju ryu) and came back to Shotokan in 2012. Currently Nidan and i assist with the teaching at two local clubs. I find the application of kata fascinating hence how i ended up on this forum. It's a great source of info.

Kiwikarateka's picture

Hi all, names Matt from Auckland, New Zealand. Been practicing Goju for about 2 and a half years, managed to work my way to 4th kyu. Currently 2 years into learning Japanese and I'm quite interested in kata application and karate/Japanese history. Occassionally dabble in weapons (had a bo, nunchuku and a pair of sai handed down to me).

Antonio G
Antonio G's picture

Hello, I'm Antonio, karate instructor in France, near Paris : http://www.karatecolombes.fr (some articles are translated in english)

I practice shotokan since 5 years old, I'm 5th dan.

You can follow me on twitter : http://twitter.com/AntonioGkarate

Chris R
Chris R's picture

Hi everyone, I'm Chris. In terms of Karate I have trained in Shotokan, currently 1st dan (shodan) black belt. I am especially interested in the practical applications of Karate. Aside from Karate, I have trained and fought in Muay Thai (this was a very good learning experience), and I'm going to keep expanding my abilities. Got lots of goals and training to do for the future.

DanRotnem's picture

Hi All:

First off, glad to be here! I'm looking forward to learning from all of you and excited to be a part of this community. 

I began training at the age of 5 (30 now) in a school that was predominantly jiujitsu but they brought in a mash-up of karate (shotokan and shito-ryu mostly). Point fighting was a very big thing for me and that school. I recieved my nidan there before heading to college and training/teaching Shotokan (ISKF). Also took up Wing Chun, Kickboxing (Bokator) and Kyokushin at that time.

During college was when I started shifting to practical and applied martial arts, engaging in lots of full contact and exploring every style I could find. Now I'm living the dream teaching a few dedicated students and being Mr. Mom to my girls. 


Matteo Marmugi
Matteo Marmugi's picture

Hello everyone my name's Matteo Marmugi.

I'm from Italy, I'm 26 and I've been training karate since I was 5, now I am instructor 3rd dan.

Nice to meet all of you!

VolkerSchilling's picture

Hello everyone,

i started training Shotokan Karate in 1989 and have been practising ever since with varying intensity. I now do Koshinkan which basically is Shotokan Karate with an emphasis on non-linear footwork. I have also cross-trained in other martial arts, of which judo, jiujitsu and modern arnis were the most important. As i was unlucky with the applications of the kata that were shown to me, i eventually found the work of Iain. My focus in Karate now is Bunkai/Oyo, especially for Kanku-Dai(Kushanku), Nijushiho(Niseishi) and Tekki(Naihanchi).

I have followed this forum for years and therefore i would like to thank all those whose application or information i put to use.

MikeOliveri's picture

Hi everyone,

I'm currently a nidan in Shuri-ryu, and at our dojo we also train in kobudo, judo, and a little bit of iaijutsu. I first started training in 2007, and in 2015 I was asked to take over as sensei at the smallest of my school's three dojo. I really enjoy teaching, but I'm looking to expand my learning and my martial arts social circle. I enjoy following Sensei Abernethy's work online, so I thought this forum would be a good fit. 

Beekeeper's picture

Hi there,

I've been a long-time lurker on here, finally decided I'm going to actively contribute to rather than passively absorb all the fantastic content I see on these forums! I'm an Australian of Greek background; started training in 2001 as a kid, and haven't once slowed down in my training over the years (except that one year I got glandular fever and was required to take 2 months off). I'm currently 25, a sandan in Goju-ryu and an Arnis practitioner under Bobby Taboada's students; as Karate is my main passion I dabble in other styles when I can.

My background in the dojo was a fairly traditional 3K Karate, although my sensei was and remains open-minded regarding our training, so we do some non-traditional stuff every now and again. I teach alongside him now and, though I used to compete in local WKF tournaments (especially in kata), I've since become fascinated with practical self-protection and Karate's relationship to it, hence my attraction to this space.

Jeb Chiles
Jeb Chiles's picture

Hello to all, 

I started karate in 1985. My base system is Matsubayashi ryu Shorin ryu, Larry Williams Hanshi was my Sensei until he passed. Sensei Williams also did the Okinawan Kenpo Kobudo system which I continue to study with Ken Baker Hanshi (head of Midori Yama Budokai) as well as others from the OKK system. I Started doing the Ryukyu Kempo system with Gordon Smith Sensei in 1995 and still practice the system with him and others from Ryukyu Kempo. I have done Jujitsu since the early 90s and continue to train with Ron Rogers Hanshi (co founder MYB) and Frank Barry Kyoshi. MYB Karate is an older version of Shotokan that maintained practical stances and applications, we do 27 empty hand and 2 Bo Kata from that system. Some of the combat sports I've  competed in: Karate full  contact/point/Bogu, Jujitsu, wrestling, pancrasion, submision wrestling, Stick fighting, Pro Kickboxing, Pro MMA. I also train in Arnis, Kenjutsu, Aikido a couple times per week. I look forward to learning from everyone here and sharing anything I know!

Jeb Chiles

Johnkyu83's picture

Hi , my name is John I have been training for  around 3 months now in shotokan karate at shuhari karate in stoke , trained by sensei Katsu who is a direct student of Hirokazu Kanazawa. I joined karate because I like the tradition of old martial arts , and admittedly in my era I was bought up on the karate kid films . So 34 years later I decided to do something about it and get involved ... and wow I don’t regret it one bit . Easily the best decision I ever made. 2nd one is joining this forum . ;) 

kodankye's picture


I have been "on again / off again" in karate for close to 30 years now.  I was trained in the Shotokan style with the JKA / ISKF world view of karate and kata.  From the very first Bunkai of Heian Shodan I was shown (Down block to the left, step in punch) I thought "this is not right."  (and that is a sanitized version)  I did not know what the "real" Bunkai for this kata was, but I was pretty sure that this was not it.  Consequently I rarely practiced kata and lagged behind in my belts.  This did not bother me because I was a good "fighter."  This meant point sparring and tournaments and I enjoyed them a lot.  I was rarely concerned with what color of belt was around my waist.  What color my sash was did not make me a better (or worse) fighter as far as I could tell. 

My first "A-Ha" moment in kata was the book 5 years 1 kata.  Eventually that led me to Iain and now I look at kata in a different light.  Are Iain's applications "right?"  Probably...maybe... who cares?  They make a LOT more sense To Me and take kata from something I thoght of as mostly useless (Learn this and go perform it in front of a lot of people and they will hold up a card and maybe give you a medal) to something I can actually practice in an engaged way and apply directly to a self defense situation.  Good enough for me. 

kodankye's picture

I do most of my practicing alone as well.  I am in Nebraska, so no help to you there, but I do hope you connect with someone and find ways to make your solo efforts more effective.  eric

Patrick's picture

Hello everyone, new member introducing myself here. ( please bear with me when I make mistakes as I'm relatively new to forums )

First off I want to say I feel very lucky to be here! I've been reading this forum for a couple of years now and it's great. I really love seeing the practical side making a comeback. 

Alittle about myself. I'm 38 years old, and live in the southeastern USA. My father was a kyukushinkai guy, and started me in karate I think as soon as I could walk lol. Unfortunately we were in a small town where a dojo would open, stay open for maybe a year or so, then close down. Needless to say I was introduced to several different disciplines, but only for a short time in each. I've been sort of a perpetual white belt. 

I tried to keep up training in my adult life, but then of coarse adult life, work schedules etc began to make it almost impossible to attend a dojo. After having to quit dojos a few times due to that, I made a decision that martial arts just weren't able to be a part of my life........after roughly 3 years, during which my inability to train was like a constant nagging voice in the back of my mind, something hit me like a ton of bricks and I made a life change. Thanks to my wife for supporting me in this. The realization came to me that karate is too much a part of me to give up. Karate wasnt going away. I switched my profession to one which allowed me the working hours to not quit again. Never again! Less money, but so much happier this way. I found out something about myself- I personally dont need all the money, the simple things in life are what make me the happiest. 

So I signed up at the local dojo where I live now, a chuck norris system school, and it was like being home again. The instructor here is very good, long years of experience ( I think Mr Abernathy met him in Las Vegas a couple of years ago ) and really loves what he does. Couldn't have asked for a better teacher. Does a very good job of balancing the sport aspect with the practical side, and things here are very well rounded. 

Life is good!

Erik's picture

Hello from Austin, Texas!

I am currently first kyu in Shorin Ryu, training under Kyoshi Ken Morgan. I started training in the fall of 2015 at the age of 46 and hope to have earned my first dan before I am 50.

Professionally I am a software developer.

I have been lurking here for six months or so and figured it's time for me to enter the fray.

I'm excited to expand my understanding of karate by expanding my circle of karateka.

DW's picture

Great. Been on the forum for seven months and only now notices that there are a "Introduce yourself"-thread.

40 year old Dane, who's been dabbling on and off with karate and other forms of martial arts ranging from taikwondo, tai chi, shaolin kung fu to Japanese jiu jitsu. Now I practice primarily jiu jitsu and karate.

I'm a fulltime stay-at-home dad, nerd in many fields, chairman and instructor in our local jiu jitsu club in a small town (3000 residents). Our club is based on volunteers (as most clubs and unions in Denmark are) and we actually have the great privillige of having 70% of our members being girls and young women.

I'm also the elected secretary of our national association of our style of jiu jitsu.

Even though I mostly train jiu jitsu at the moment, my first love is karate, which I began to practice when I was 7 years old. I still keep returning to it and so far have put on a white belt four times. Each time because of moving, work or other changes in other areas of life.

Kind regards,