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I began training in Contact Karate with Kash ‘the Flash’ Gill in Sutton Coldfield in 1991, with my first grading on the morning of my brother’s wedding. Later I trained at various clubs due to traveling around, eventually settling on Okinawan Goju Ryu, firstly in Hereford and then back in Birmingham.
I stayed with the GKI (Goju Ryu Karate International) during my University years, achieving black belt in 2001. About a year later I began teaching, whilst training for nidan (2nd level black belt). Around this time I found the United Goju Forums, which opened up the world of Goju in the UK. I attended all four United Goju Seminars; Kent, Southampton, Birmingham and Essex.
I spent time finding and training with Goju and other teachers around the country and inviting some to take courses in Birmingham. After completing my Doctorate in Sports Science at the University of Birmingham in 2006 I was directed to the website of Steve Morris and eventually arranged a day course with him. My club adopted the teachings and methods of Steve Morris, as much as possible, which now lead our training.
Someone said to me after the first course “there’s no going back” and this seems to have been the case. Training with Steve and the others at Primal has completely changed the way we train, the way I plan our training and the way I think about the Martial Arts. It works for me because his methodology sits very well with my Sports Science background. I have a PhD and I can safely say that I haven’t come across anyone else in Martial Arts that has such a scientifically valid approach to training.
This has resulted in a parting of ways with the GKI in 2008 and a setting up on our own. Training now is never dull, there is always input, either from Steve directly or via his methods. Where once we were limited by the confines of ‘traditional’ Karate methodology there are now, literally, no limits. And as there are no limits there are no absolutes. Just scientific, progressive Karate.
This blog charts the progress of the club and related projects.