Friday, 31 May 2013

Andre Bertel South Africa 2013 (Video three)

This is part three of my karate classes in South Africa, part one is already on ( Part two (which has yet to be uploaded), and the official weekend seminar, will be online very soon. This slow process has been a direct result of my busy schedule at the University of Canterbury, which will continue until mid-June. Before I sign off, I'd just like to mention that I loved teaching this class and so much enjoyed the children's efforts and "very big smiles". They tried so hard and are passionate about traditional Shotokan Karate.
I hope to see them again in the future and that they continue to study Karate-Do.
 Osu, Andre

© André Bertel. Christchurch, New Zealand (2013).

Updated schedule for prospective hosts

UPDATE: From June 11th, I'm available for private lessons and seminars nationwide in New Zealand. However, these seminars must be booked via
I am booked on Friday the 7th of June. Then from June the 20th to 27th Mizuho and I are in Melbourne, Australia. After the 27th of June I'll be available again, but only in New Zealand (up to the 3rd of August). Thanks and apologies for the invitations to Brazil, Israel, Egypt, UK and Russia -- which I am unable to do this year. Of course, I want to conduct courses everywhere, but sometimes it is impossible to schedule. Irrespective of this, I am deeply honoured to be receiving such invitations. Osu!
© André Bertel. Christchurch, New Zealand (2013).

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Busy at the University of Canterbury

Sorry for my lack of posts, my workload at the University of Canterbury has been pretty extreme, but soon over…

 My target is to keep within the "A-A+ range", so I am doing the hard yards, but will have to see what happens...
Anyway, once I wrap this degree (in mid-June) I will post several articles and videos. So stay tuned for these! 

Until then, in addition to my assignments, I will continue to focus on my Asai-ha Shotokan-ryu training and supporting JKA Christchurch (
 Osu, André
 © André Bertel. Christchurch, New Zealand (2013).

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Is self-training in karate really essential?

I sometimes get asked whether or not self-practice in karate is really essential.
To answer this, I ask people “If one attends university lectures but does not study outside of class, can they expect to pass their assessments and benefit long-term from the material they are being taught?” Unambiguously, going to the dojo and training with others is utterly essential; nevertheless, this must irrefutably be supplemented by one’s own practice: in order to groove learning and skill refinement into the subconscious.
Using the analogy of university study again, I treat my study the same as karate, that is, I give it 100%. Anything less is cheating oneself. My thinking is that we don't need to be the best, but rather, to push our limits and become the best we can be. The battle is always with oneself... Correspondingly, this is how martial arts practice benefits other domains of one's life.
Taken as a whole, self-training in karate-do is not only important... It is imperative!
OSU, André.
© André Bertel. Christchurch, New Zealand (2013).

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Visitor from Australia

JKA Christchurch had a guest from Australia this week, Rebecca Hann (2nd Dan), who attended the two general classes at CPIT. On the second session, I was invited by Lyall Sensei as a guest instructor, so I covered the basics of Asai-ha Shotokan-ryu; namely, koshi no kaiten (hip rotation), tai no shinshuku (the compression and expansion of the body) and junansei (softness). The kata Heian-nidan, Heian-godan and Tekki-shodan were practiced, some light jiyu-kumite, as well as a variation on Heian-shodan. All in all, the emphasis of the class was on developing a foundation for ichigeiki-hissatsu - the essence of karate technique; that is, to develop the ability to down an attacker with a single blow.

 Rebecca was very polite and keen to train so I'd like to wish her all the best with her karate-do back in Australia. Here are some photos from tonights session. Osu, André.

© André Bertel. Christchurch, New Zealand (2013).