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ECKA Summer Course
|The ECKA Summer course for 2008 took place in the town of Emmen, in Holland for the second year. Forty-eight students from many ECKA clubs from around the country, including Milton Keynes, Enfield, Bicester, Coventry and Bletchley. The majority of participants had a very early start and made the journey by coach and ferry, others decided to fly via Amsterdam, but everyone arrived around the same time on the Friday night, with just enough time to get an evening meal before a chance to check out the accommodation and get some sleep in preparation of the training ahead.
Saturday morning commenced with an early morning welcome from ECKA Chief Instructor, Sensei Dev Barrett followed by a brief stretch taken by Sensei Paul Bosley and a run with Sensei Geoff Aldridge, unfortunately in the rain. The session ended with basic techniques and some more stretching before allowing people time for breakfast.
The group all then travelled to the Worldwide Headquarters of International Budokai Kan (IBK). The facilities on offer within the Dojo are first class, with a very large matted area, permanent kick bags and full-size ring.
On arrival the students received a more formal welcome from Sensei Dev Barrett and an introduction to the host and president of the IBK Kancho Henk Kuipers, who outlined the itinerary for the weekend ahead.
The first training session was taken by Remy Bonjasky, the current WPKA World Superheavyweight and 3 times K1 World GP Champion! He had travelled to teach the group only 6 days after his latest victorious K1 fight in Taiwan. It was a real honour for the students to have one of the top current fighters in the world to put them through their paces! It became apparent very quickly how tough Remy trains, as the main plan of his session was no rest or standing still! The session was mostly partner and pad work working punches, kicks and of course knees! Following the session Remy conducted a Question and Answer session to allow people to learn even more from a great champion.
For a video of some of the highlights of Remy's session please visit YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YqIhLr5BAXE
After a lunchbreak, it was back to the dojo for the second session of the day.
This was a MMA groudn-fighting session led by Danial Sharifi. Danial is one of Team
Hardcore's up and coming young fighters and one of the best MMA figthers in Holland. He certainly demonstrated a thorough knowledge of groundwork, locks and holds in this session.
A press conference had been organised for Saturday evening, as Barrington Patterson was fighting on the 5th October at a prestigious event in Rotterdam ("Tough is not Enough"). Following the introductions to the fighters, a further Q&A session and photgraphs it was back to Parc Sandur centre, where we were all accommodated for a relaxing evening of food and drink.
Sunday started with another run back to the lake location for a warm-up and some stretching with Coach (Sensei Hopeton) and some imaginative running and exercise races in teams taken by Sensei Dev.
Once we had all arrived back at the dojo. the first training session on Sunday was taken by Kancho Henk Kuipers. Kancho Henk is is the worldwide president of the IBK organisation and an 8th Dan Black Belt, he has known Sensei Dev for a number of years and was happy to accommodate the ECKA group for a second year running.
Kancho Henk also runs a bodyguard and doorman business and his session was of an highly practical nature with some very impressive (and painful) locks, take downs and methods to defend against knife attacks. Following from last year, he again decided to demonstrate on his "little friend", Sensei Geoff.
After the self-defence was some wrestling practice and some ingenious use of the belts for strength and resistance training.
The last instructor was unable to make the Sunday afternoon session, so Danial Sharifi kindly stepped in to cover. Again, this was mainly an MMA session with more emphasis on stand-up going to ground to fit in well with the previous session from the day before. The session ended with plenty of time for sparring and a good opportunity for students from different clubs to spar together, with a number practicing in the ring, and some trying their luck with Danial himself!
After the final session of the weekend, all of the students were presented with a certificate, signed by all of the instructors of the main training sessions, by Kancho Henk.
The ECKA Instructors who were present at the course were:
Sensei Dev Barrett, ECKA Chief Instructor, 7th Dan Black Belt
Sensei Steve Rhodes
On behalf of everyone who attended this great Summer Course, I'd like to thank Sensei Dev for making it all happen and Kancho Henk and the other instructors for their hospitality and teachings. If anyone wants higher quality pictures from the above or any of them, then please email through and I'll send them to you.
Sensei Geoff Aldridge