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karate_genbukai_120Five youth members of the Ithaca Genbu Kai Karate Dojo traveled to New Jersey to compete in the 2011 New Jersey Genbu Kai Annual Karate-Do Championships on Saturday, October 22.  Each of the students brought home medals in all four of the competition’s events. The students, who are members of the Lansing, Dryden, and Ithaca communities, collected 15 total medals during the tournament.

Ronnie Webber from Dryden placed second in kata, and third in weapons kata and weapons sparring. Gordan Webber, also from Dryden, earned second place in both kata and weapons sparring.  Jacob Ouellette of Lansing earned first place in kata and weapons sparring, as well as third place in sparring. Adelaide Tracey, from Ithaca, placed first in kata, weapons kata, and weapons sparring and placed third in sparring.  Malcolm Longaker, also  of Ithaca earned first place in sparring, second place in weapons sparring and third place in kata.

karate_genbukai_Members of the Ithaca Genbu Kai Dojo who competed at the New Jersey Genbu Kai Annual Karate-Do Championships. Left to Right: Adelaide Tracey, Gordan Webber, Jacob Ouellette, Malcolm Longaker, and Ronnie Webber.

The Japan Karate Center in Hillsborough, NJ hosted the competition.  The event was comprised of junior and adult groups and was further subdivided by experience level. Competitors then participated in four events: kata, weapons kata, sparring and weapons sparring.  In the kata event, students execute solo forms and are judged by senior instructors.  Sparring, the second event, is a one-on-one fighting match between two students attempting to score controlled points.  Weapons kata is similar to kata. It is the execution of a solo form while wielding one of six traditional Okinawan weapons.  Weapons sparring is a match between two students who each use padded versions of the traditional weapons.

The Saturday tournament, however, was only a portion of New Jersey Genbu Kai’s three-day event.  The students also watched as junior and adult black belts received their official promotions at the awards dinner on Saturday night.  On Friday and Sunday, attendees had the opportunity to attend karate and weapons seminars led by visiting senior Genbu Kai instructors from as far away as Florida and Minnesota.  Students learned self-defense techniques and proper usage of traditional Okinawan weapons.  As with all Genbu Kai events, sportsmanship, respect to fellow students, and discipline were common themes throughout the weekend’s event.

The Ithaca Genbu Kai Dojo is based at the Ithaca YMCA. Instruction is available at the Ithaca Dojo for both juniors and adults.  Sensei Adam Segal, the senior instructor, is a certified black belt with over 20 years of karate experience.

"Our karate is more than just punching and kicking. We focus on creating strong people through hard work and discipline.  Tournament competition can be a great way to foster good attitude and team spirit.  It’s also fun when you win," said Segal, an accomplished tournament competitor.

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