A true local legend

Our very own Sensei Bob Allen has been recognised as a Midland local legend! His name permanently commemorated on a brick in Cale Street Midland. With over 240 entries Sensei made the top 100!

Sensei Bob Allen has been a prominent figure in the local area for decades. He started his martial arts training in Ju Jitsu in 1963 at the Midland PCYC and later trained in Goju Ryu in Midland. Sensei Bob opened the Swan View Dojo in June 1984 starting off in the old small hall with one lesson per week and later moving to the main Brown Park recreation complex as numbers grew. In the Dojo’s current location in Midland, Sensei Bob is known as a community mentor and friend to everyone he works with.

Congratulations Sensei Bob

WA Team in Caloundra

What a fabulous effort by all coaches, referees, team managers, clubs, parents and friends for getting the WA athletes ready for the Nationals 2018 in Caloundra, Queensland.
And congratulations goes to our very own Swan Hills Goju Ryu student Drew Ridley well done, taking silver in veterans Kata. Very close with 3 flags to 2. Drew performed a fantastic Kata for his final round.

Local Karate Club Shines at Home and Away

Swan Hills Karate Goju Ryu Western Australia Midland and Eastern Hills Okinawa

Local Karate Club Shines at Home and Away

By: Lisa Skrypichayko

Swan Hills Goju Ryu Karate ended 2017 on a high note after intensive training and successful gradings. 20 members of Sensei Bob Allen’s dojo travelled to karate’s birthplace in Okinawa, Japan, joining students from across Australia to learn from masters Shigetoshi Seneha Sensei of Ryusyokai Karate-do and Takehiro Gaja Sensei of Matayoshi Kobudo (traditional Okinawan weaponry). Several WA students and instructors achieved higher ranks, and senior students staying back to instruct classes at Swan Hills’ Midland and Mount Helena dojos were graded at home, their promotions certified in Okinawa by Seneha Sensei.

Sensei Bob also graded, receiving higher ranking instructor levels in both karate and kobudo, along several of his students who assist under his guidance with training and coaching. Assistant instructors Ian Smith, Leo Spiccia and Wolf Konrad were promoted to 5th dan black belts. Damien Bell, instructor at Swan Hills Goju Ryu’s sister dojo in Bridgetown, received his 3rd dan. Tony Wray, Warren Hope, Lisa Skrypichayko, Pru and Beau Ruthofer also received 3rd dans, and Melinda Brezmen was promoted to 2nd dan.

Hope and Skrypichayko also received black belts in kobudo.

Back in WA the annual brown/black belt testing soon followed. Of all the students who participated, Ben McDonald (recently returned from Okinawa), Grace Sawyer, Michael Samirich and Philippa Jackson of the Bridgetown dojo were promoted to shodan (senior black belt), with new junior black belts also given to two younger students.

“I am extremely proud of what our group has accomplished this year” declared Sensei Bob, adding, “We have all gained from the support of our students, committee members and also the Shire of Mundaring, who’ve assisted us from time to time with grants for equipment and first aid training”. With a smile and a sigh of relief, he commented, “We’ve all earned a good rest over the holidays, but I can’t wait to see what 2018 brings!”

Sensei Bob Allen is the WA head of Goju Ryu Australia. He was a referee at the state and national level for 21 years, and is one of the WA Karate Federation’s senior kata coaches.

Sensei Bob teaches students of all ages at his Midland and Mount Helena dojos.

For more information, please ring Bob on 0419 922 609 or email bob@swanhillsgojuryu.com.au.

Karate students visit Japan

Swan Hills Karate Western Australia Midland Goju ryu

Karate students visit Japan

Echo Newspaper by: Anita

SWAN Hills Goju Ryu Karate students recently returned from karate’s birthplace in Okinawa, Japan, where they learned from masters Shigetoshi Seneha Sensei of Ryusyokai Karate-do and Takehiro Gaja Sensei of Matayoshi Kobudo (traditional Okinawan weaponry).

As part of a rigorous two-week training schedule, several students and instructors were invited to test for their next rank.

All were assessed by their masters on their knowledge and application of karate basics, individual and partnered kata patterns, and fighting techniques, with their peers present to observe, encourage and learn. Sensei Bob was promoted to higher instructor-level ranks in recognition of his knowledge and contributions to both karate and kobudo.

Some of Sensei Bob’s students who assist under his guidance with training and coaching also attained higher levels, including senior students who stayed back to instruct classes at Swan Hills’ Midland and Mount Helena dojos, their promotions certified in Okinawa by Sensei Seneha.

Assistant instructors Ian Smith, Leo Spiccia and Wolf Konrad, promoted to 5th dan black belts, were recognised as Senseis within the Swan Hills dojo.

Damien Bell, instructor at Swan Hills Goju Ryu’s sister dojo in Bridgetown, received his 3rd dan.

Tony Wray, Warren Hope, Lisa Skrypichayko, Pru and Beau Ruthofer also received 3rd dans, and Melinda Brezmen was promoted to 2nd dan.

Hope and Skrypichayko also received black belts in kobudo.

All participants gained valuable skills and insight into traditional Okinawan martial arts, developed greater awareness and appreciation of the unique cultural identity of the Ryukyu Islands in Japan’s Okinawa prefecture, and made lasting friendships in Okinawa and across Australia.

Sensei Bob said he was  surprised and honoured to be promoted, but was even prouder of the achievements and standard displayed by his students.

“I have done the best I can to follow the tradition and show them the way, and the exceptional amount of time, spirit, and diligent practice they have put in has paid off,’’ he said.

Sensei Bob Allen is the WA head of Goju Ryu Australia.

Quiet Achiever Karate Sensei Becomes Queen’s Baton Bearer

Quiet Achiever Karate Sensei Becomes Queen’s Baton Bearer

By Lisa Skrypichayko

The Queen’s Baton was in good hands this week, carried through Guildford by longtime local resident and karate teacher Bob Allen, in the lead up to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. The humble instructor who prefers to let his actions speak for themselves was honoured to have been chosen as one of just over 310 baton bearers, relishing the opportunity to participate in the relay with many other distinguished community leaders and athletes.

With over 55 years of martial arts experience, Bob Allen 7th dan Kyoshi has amassed an extraordinary amount of knowledge and skills. Sensei Bob (as he prefers to be called) started his martial arts training in 1963, learning ju jitsu at the Midland Police & Citizens Youth Club. He commenced in Goju Ryu karate in 1969, began teaching classes in 1973, and opened his first dojo in Bayswater a year later. Since then, Sensei Bob has taught approximately 2500 students. Of these, approximately 50 younger students attained junior black belt rank, and about 60 adults have earned senior black belts. Several of his students studied with him as youths, returning to continue their journey with him decades later. Others who continued training beyond the initial black belt level have achieved higher ranks and instructor qualifications. Four of Sensei Bob’s most senior students have been awarded the rank of Sensei, and with their assistance at his Swan Hills Goju Ryu dojos, students benefit from over 190 combined years of karate wisdom.In addition to karate instruction, Sensei Bob has been a senior kata coach for the West Australian Karate Federation (WAKF) team since 2013. Athletes coached by Sensei Bob have reached equal 6 th place (and the top 8 for team kata) at the world competition level. Under his guidance, competitors have won numerous gold medals in competitions in Oceania and at the national and state levels. One of his students, Joe Coniglio, competed at the world level and was recognised by the WAKF as an outstanding sports star in 2000, 2003 and 2004. 3 other students have been appointed state team captains. Sensei Bob also served as a state and national referee of kata and kumite for 22 years, and on retirement from refereeing was recognised by the WAKF as referee of the year.

Sensei Bob has been the Western Australian Shibu-cho (chief instructor) with Okinawa Goju Ryu Ryusyokai karate since 2012, and was given the title Kyoshi (expert instructor) for Goju Ryu Australia in 2017. He is the WA representative for Okinawa Matayoshi Kobudo Rengokai Sohonbu, a worldwide organisation dedicated to traditional Okinawan weaponry, and also teaches tai chi to complement these disciplines.

Despite his illustrious CV, Sensei Bob likes to avoid the limelight, preferring to hone his own techniques and understanding to the highest degree. By his own account, Sensei Bob began his karate as a struggler, progressing slowly, but through tenacity and continued practice he developed solid foundations for his karate. He says that not having been a “natural” was a blessing in disguise, forcing him to work hard and analyse every move, and credits this attention to detail as key to his success. He feels it is his duty to accurately and faithfully transmit the knowledge and traditions of those who have gone before him, while seeking to inspire those who follow his martial path.

Reflecting on his experience as a baton bearer for the 2018 Queen’s Baton Relay, Sensei Bob admitted “I was shocked to discover that I was one of only a very few across WA chosen for this honour, but so proud to have my family and friends here to share this incredible moment in my life.” He added, “Every year, I set goals as to what I plan to achieve personally and professionally. I’ve been so fortunate recently that I’m beginning to run out of goals!” His students are sure, however, that this teacher, mentor and role model will find new ways to continue to raise the bar for himself and those he teaches.

Sensei Bob teaches students of all ages at his Midland and Mount Helena dojos. For more information, please ring Bob on 0419 922 609 or email bob@swanhillsgojuryu.com