Meet the Bastards
Andi the bastard
Everyone who has met him knows that Andi is a Bastard. He has been called that and much worse over his long karate career.
Andi started studying Shotokan, not because of a fierce desire to do so but because that was the style of the instructor that was at his first club. But he has sort of stuck to it ever since and has graded to 5th Dan.
Some people have said that he is teaching true Shotokan (or Shotokan as it should be) whilst others say that he isn’t teaching Shotokan at all, to both observations he says ‘yep’.
Andi really believes that karate people should think for themselves and to that end has authored two books. The first ‘From Shotokan to the Street’ about how to take normal karate and apply it to the problems of real world violence (it also has a great picture of him grabbing a blokes nuts on the cover) and ‘The Problem of Practical Karate’. In this book he got fifteen experts to explain what practical karate is and what is the most important things to train this. He also sets the reader some homework!
As well as teaching regular classes, Andi like to teach in ‘different locations’, Nightclubs, woods and ancient iron age hill forts to name a few. He also is the founder of the ‘Bunkai Bash’ an excuse to get a load of friends into a field, eat, drink and of course, punch each other.
Brian the bastard
Brian’s karate journey started by following in the footsteps of the modern masters. For many years he trained in the classical three k’s style of karate, and enjoying the challenges it bought. Practicing for that perfect technique, perfect kata and training for sports kumite. During this time he entered many tournaments regularly placing in the top three in regional and national events.
Then something happened that changed the direction of his journey. He attended an open karate seminar with Iain Abernethy and was blown away, suddenly all the years of kata practice made sense in that one seminar. From then on he attended as many seminars as he could with as many well-respected applied karate instructors possible. In that time, he also took up aikijujitsu to get a better knowledge of locks and throws.
His journey has now come to a point where it’s more about function over form, no longer just about learning techniques and more about understanding principles. Once you understand how this shit works it becomes very easy. As he once blurted out at a seminar he was teaching “It’s just fucking movements” Once you get your head around that, you can figure the rest out for yourself.
Bob the bastard
This is not a new label, Bob has been a “Bastard” for many decades now, officially titled so by his own children some 25 years ago, whilst also being cursed as a “sound geezer” by others due to being a nice, safe and reliable bloke.
This just goes to show that the two are not mutually exclusive and that it's possible to be a nice guy and a total bastard all at the same time.
As a Karate bastard, Bob originally started training Shotokan karate back in the late 1970's but had a number of breaks in his career as home and family took priority.
At the time of writing he's been back in serious training for around 20 years and has been awarded 4 “Dans” for his efforts. Whilst still a Shotokan man at heart he has also had a few brief forays into Ju-Jistsu (both traditional and Brazilian) and has trained around with some of the bigger names in martial arts and with real world experts in violence management and personal protection in his pursuit of good and genuine information.
Bob still teaches Karate on a regular basis and offers classes in a traditional style with an emphasis on practical usage for real world scenarios. Bob is still referred to as “Sensei” by some, not because he wants to be but because the buggers won't stop!