September 22 & 23, 2007
WSKO Northern European Regional Instructors' Study Session in Finland
2007 Shorinji Kempo Northern European Regional Insturctors' Study Session was held for two days on September 22nd and 23rd of 2007, in Hameenlinna of Finland, attended by 87 kenshi from Finland, Sweden, and Russia. WSKO Instructor/Board Member Hiroshi Aosaka (8th Dan) from France, and WSKO Instructor Masaki Maehara (7th Dan) from U.K. taught in the event.
21st September - Left Paris in the afternoon with Aosaka sensei to fly up to Helsinki where we were met by FSKF secretary Seppo Ruusukivi and Iikka Virtanen sensei. This was my first time in Finland and the 1 hour drive up to Hameenlinna passed very quickly as we travelled through some beautiful countryside past many many lakes and through a very large forest
Arriving at the Hotel we were met by FSKF president Juha Utriainen sensei, his wife and the kenshi and given a very warm welcome to Finland. One thing I learnt early on was that saunas are very popular in Northern Europe - this explained the number of people wandering around the hotel corridors in their bathrobes.
Morning of the 22nd saw the Northern European Regional Instructors' Study Session get under way with FSKF president Juha sensei introducing the senior instructors and branch masters. This was followed with a 1 minutes silence for sensei Vesa Maki-Kuutti who died in July.
A finnish kenshi took the Chinkon gyo, then I took over for taiso and kihon, followed by howa from Aosake sensei; after this everyone was split up by grades for the technical training. The day finished with everyone watching a dvd of 2005 international taikai in Fukui. Many kenshi couldn't go and this was their first opportunity to see a world taikai.
Dinner in the evening was quiet a relaxed affair where every one got a chance to mingle and chat to Aosake sensei and let their hair down.
23 - Everyone was feeling the strain from the previous day's training and evening activities, consequently the training was more relaxed. Aosaka sensei took the opportunity to explain some of the finer point of goho and juho which are frequently overlooked. He finished this off with a demonstration of kappo which provoked a lot of interest and proved quite an eye opener to a lot of people.
Just before his closing speech Aosaka sensei announced the details of the grading- Stefan Jonsson Levin-Visby, Maki Kuutti, Timo Matti- Jyvaskyla Lotila Petri-Vaajakoski were successful
Aosaka sensei formally closed the training seminar with a quick speech thanking everyone for the warm welcome and excellent hospitality we had received and for making it such a successful seminar with their enthusiasm and commitment and looked forward to the next Northern European Regional Instructors' Study Seminar.
BSKF-Tolworth Masaki Maehara