Thursday, February 20, 2014

Traditional Karate taught to University faculty and students

Soke Hausel, grandmaster of Shorin-Ryu Karate
& Kobudo

Traditional Karate is considered to be a combat art and referred to as karatedo. The 'do' attached to karate referring to a life-long path one must take for enlightenment and better health. It may also be referred to as karate-jutsu - implying that kata (forms) are not a major part of the system. Over the years, many faculty and university students have trained in Shorin-Ryu Karate and Kobudo and many have moved on to teach martial arts, science, engineering, etc at universities around the world. Their interest in the traditional martial arts is related to structured karate classes and training that provide opportunities to learn traditions, karate history, philosophy, techniques and some Japanese language.

Over the past few decades, one instructor purposely focused on teaching martial arts to adults. Grandmaster (soke) Hausel taught karate, kobudo, samurai arts, self-defense and many other arts at Arizona State University, the University of New Mexico, University of Utah, and for 3 decades at the University of Wyoming as well as at Golds Gym and other facilities; thus, his experience is teaching adults. Because of his unique position in teaching at four universities, he was presented some unique credentials including kyoju (Professor of Budo). Budo translates as 'martial arts'. And as a geologist, he was presented many awards.

While teaching at the University of Wyoming, he trained a few thousand college students along with many faculty and university staff. When he moved to Gilbert, Arizona in 2006, he had hoped to establish a similar curriculum at ASU, CGCC or MCC, but found the university bureaucracy and community college bureaucracy too difficult to work with, so he opened the Arizona Hombu Dojo in Mesa.  

Okinawan karate and kobudo are taught at the Arizona Hombu on Baseline Road near Country Club. The classes include a wide variety of training taught by a Hall-of-Fame grandmaster such as traditional karate classes, jujutsu, self-defense, body hardening, samurai arts and martial arts weapons. These are all taught each week at the martial arts school located in the Phoenix East Valley.

On Okinawa, karate and kobudo evolved from Shaolin Kung Fu and became the premier form of self-defense in the world. The art was kept secret from all outsiders until the beginning of the 20th century. This martial art is considered pragmatic self-defense and not taught as sport. Over the years, a few thousand university students, staff and faculty have trained in the Shorin-Ryu martial arts.

University of Wyoming karate and kobudo class

Japanese Peace gardens, Phoenix, Arizona

Tea house at the Phoenix Japanese Peace Garden

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