Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Shorinji Kan Meets Can-ryu

This past Sunday, Chris invited me out for dinner with a group of people from his other style of Jiu-jitsu, Shorinji Kan. When he can, he helps out with the BCIT Shorinji Kan class taught by Kevin Eugene on Tuesday evenings immediately after our own class. The students of that class graded over the weekend and they were celebrating their successful testing. The test was conducted by Andy Dobie Sensei, head of the style in Canada, so I got to meet him at the dinner.

Andy Dobie Sensei is a very interesting character with whom I had the pleasure of exchanging training stories. At the end of the night I invited him and his group to come to one of our classes while they were in town. To my surprise and delight, despite the fact that he was fighting a cold, they accepted the offer.

Last night I ran the class and it was good fun. Even though he is the head of his own style in Canada, with nearly 30 years of training experience, Andy Dobie Sensei got on my mats and trained with all my students and did so with a smile. In my mind, this is one of the signs of a true master. He loves the martial arts and takes something away from every experience. He seemed to enjoy his time on the mats, even though I'm certain most of what I taught was not new to him. Coincidentally, he is also going to train with Robert Mustard Sensei tomorrow night, whom Chris and I went and trained with last Saturday.

Kevin Eugene, the instructor of the BCIT Shorinji Kan class, also trained with us. He is getting ready to grade for his Shodan in the new year. I offered for him to come train during our open training sessions on Sundays so he can work with Chris. Though I secretly harbour a desire to throw myself into the mix occasionally so I can learn more of their style.

Anyway, it's been a busy last week of classes before the holidays. Tonight, I fly back to Ottawa to spend the holidays with family. Chris will also be in Ottawa (he also has family there) so tomorrow we'll be heading out to train with his old Shorinji Kan group. It's so nice to be able to keep up the training while I'm away. :)


Anonymous said...

hey if some of your belts are from Ottawa, has anyone of your group trained with the therien school. I have and am looking for a way to continue my trainning, it has been a while

Lori O'Connell said...

No, but I actually did my shodan grading at Sensei Therien's dojo. After that, my dojo and his parted ways. My Sensei's curriculum came to reflect modifications brought in by Professor Sylvain (founder of Can-ryu).

So while there are many similarities between what Sensei Therien teaches and what we teach, there are sufficient differences that you'd had to start at white belt if you were to train with us. That being said, if you've got good technique and you pick up the extra curriculum quickly, it is possible that you might progress faster than usual. But if you're ok with that and you're just happy to train in something that is fairly similar, you'd likely enjoy training with us.

Hope that helps!