Thursday, July 31, 2008

2008 SMAA Seminar (2)

As usual, this year’s SMAA Seminar was an exceptionally joyful affair, filled with smiling participants. The tone for the event was set by the teachers, all of whom are old and close friends. Joe Rippy Sensei, Steve Fabian Sensei, Nicklaus Suino Sensei, and H. E. Davey don’t get to see each other as much as they’d like; the students could clearly see how happy they were to be teaching with each other again. The mutual respect among the teachers at the event was palpable. This set the tone for the entire weekend.

Friday--July 25, 2008
The event began on Friday evening with testing for dan grades. The tests were observed by the four sensei featured at the seminar. A high degree of skill was displayed by everyone being examined. Following the tests, Suino Sensei, Rippy Sensei, Fabian Sensei, and Mr. Davey enjoyed a fine dinner and had an informal SMAA officials meeting. They agreed that the group is continuing to grow, while still retaining the excellent quality and attitudes we associate with traditional Japanese budo.
The photos in this post are of one of the tests that took place on Friday evening. Brian Barnes Sensei and Matthew Hawthorne Sensei of Kentucky were testing for dan rank in the SMAA Jujutsu Division. They performed the kata of Hontai Yoshin Ryu.