Saturday, June 9, 2012

Kushida Sensei passes away

We are deeply saddened to report the passing of our president and head instructor, Sensei Takashi Kushida, who died on May 10, 2012 after an extended illness. The founder of Yoshokai Aikido, Kushida-sensei was one of the first uchideshi of Gozo Shioda-sensei—an original student of Morihei Ueshiba-sensei. 

AYANA activities and training at the Genyokan Dojo in Ann Arbor will continue under the direction of Kushida-sensei's son, Akira Kushida-sensei. In accordance with Kushida-sensei's wishes, there will not be a funeral. Memorial donations may be made to the "Kushida-sensei and Mrs. Kushida Fund" in care of AYANA, 3796 Plaza Dr. , Suite 3, Ann Arbor, MI 48108. 

Also Sensei Richard RABAGO passed away Friday morning. Not Aikido directly but was a strong supporter of our efforts in Orange County. 

I am very sorry to hear of his passing. He sounded to me to be a great teacher and torch bearer of the art. My thoughts and prayers to his immediate and extended family(students). 

Very sad news. God bless you guys.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

fresh ideas from fellow instructors

I know we've probably discussed this many times in the past, but I would love some fresh ideas from fellow instructors. I am teaching at a brand new YMCA facility in a small town where there are ZERO other TK instructors. I've been teaching for a couple years, but due to the economy, I have had a couple of programs and studios close down. I have to keep finding new places to teach. I have lost several students along the way, sadly.

At the Y, members are asked to pay a fee for my Turbo class in addition to their membership fees. As a result, I have five students that have stayed with me. That's it! Do any of you have some tips on how to recruit more peeps? This is THE BEST CARDIO EVER! We've done free demos on Saturdays (try before you buy - type classes), we've had drawings, I post it all over facebook, I send out email blasts to friends and family, and I've even posted on bulletin boards and my office door at my "day job". I'm at a loss. Please help! 

Thank you and keep kickin'!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

A Hand-Book of Wrestling by Hugh Leonard

I am proud to announce the republish of Hugh Leonard's 1897 "A Hand-Book of Wrestling. Many thanks to Dan Kanagie of Wolfhound Martial Arts for providing the text for this project.


In 1897, at about the age of 29, Hugh Leonard published this Magnum Opus of Catch as Catch Can Wrestling manuals. An early wrestling prodigy, Leonard became the protegĂ©, after impressing him with his skill, wrestling great William "Billy" Muldoon and his friend, boxing legend, John L. Sullivan. By age 16, Leonard was a professional wrestler and was wrestling against all comers for $100 against any who could throw the boy.

In 1893, Leonard became wrestling instructor at the Buffalo Athletic Club of Buffalo, N.Y. A year after ward, Leonard became the wrestling instructor for the Manhattan Athletic Club. Within a short period thereafter, he was installed as the wrestling instructor for the New York Athletic Club, a post at which he remained until his death from a lighting strike, while at a wrestling Training Camp in 1914.

His wrestling career included bouts against such wrestlers as Plen Shoemaker, Matsada Sorakichi, Martin Muldoon, Tom Cannon, and Evan "The Strangler" Lewis.

Among his other noteworthy accomplishments, Leonard served as a referee in the first ever inter-college Collegiate Wrestling matches. Hosted by Columbia University and attended by challenger Yale on March 21, 1903, Leonard, here too, left his mark on the history of wrestling.

Predating by a year the advent of Japanese Jui Jitsu to the West in 1898, Leonard's "A Hand-Book of Wrestling" details hundreds of grappling and throwing technique, including rare chokes and joint locks. With over 200 photographs, digitally retouched, a print run of only 300 copies, making this one of the most rare and valuable wrestling manuals, and weighting in at well past 250 pages, this manual is an essential part of every Catch as Catch Can wrestler or western martial arts historian's toolbox.

As always the PDF is free to download.