View Full Version : USAF-ER 25th Anniversary Winter Camp

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08-16-2005, 09:51 PM
Florida Aikikai and Yamada Sensei invites you to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the Florida Winter Seminar on November 4 - 6, 2005 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We hope to make this year a special event.

Come on down and warm-up a little bit before Winter kicks in. The weather is usually cooling down for us Floridians, but still warm enough for everyone else. There will be time on Friday to go to the beach.

Our feature instructors are:
Yamada Sensei, 8th dan, New York Aikikai
Sugano Sensei, 8th dan, New York Aikikai
Shibata Sensei, 7th dan, Berkeley Aikikai

In addition, classes will be taught by Shihan of the USAF Technical Committee.

Special classes will include a basics/kyu class and a black belt class. Dan testing will be on Saturday after the morning classes.

Seminar fees are:
three days--$130 USD
two days--$110 USD
one day--$80 USD

Hotels/ lodging:
Our hotel for the seminar will be at the Sheraton Yankee Clipper. It is a famous landmark beachfront hotel in the heart of the famous strip on Fort Lauderdale beach, and is only 10 minutes from the dojo.

In addition to the Yankee Clipper a block of rooms have been reserved at last year's hotel the Ramada Plaza Beach Resort located on the famous Galt Ocean Mile in Fort Lauderdale.

For international visitors there is Floyd's Hostel & Crew House near the dojo for $20/ night. You must have non-US passport.

For more information:
Go to our website at Florida Aikikai (http://www.floridaaikikai.com)

08-18-2005, 08:31 AM
The Florida Aikikai website has just been updated so registration information is now available.

Hope to see you there!

09-13-2005, 09:16 PM
Remember: THE DEADLINE FOR RESERVATIONS AT EITHER HOTEL IS OCTOBER 4TH. Fort Lauderdale is a very busy vacation spot and we could only reserve a limited number or rooms, so please make your reservations early. fmi: www.floridaaikikai.com

I look forward to seeing folks there (you know who you are. ;) )

10-03-2005, 10:02 PM
If you haven't registered, now, please do so! Rooms are filling up! Hope to see you all there.

Karen Wolek
10-04-2005, 09:48 AM
Got my room, got my flight, all set.

Who else from aikiweb will be there?

10-05-2005, 10:29 PM
Well, Karen,

You know I'll be there. ;)

Anyone else from here coming? You'll find me at the testing registration table.

Karen Wolek
10-30-2005, 09:56 AM
Does anyone have any info about whether Winter Camp is still happening?

10-30-2005, 01:49 PM
Does anyone have any info about whether Winter Camp is still happening?

I'd like to know as well. I'm planning on being there.

Mark Chiappetta

Karen Wolek
10-31-2005, 02:23 PM
Soon as I find anything out, I'll let you know. Only thing I have heard so far is that Bernath Sensei is supposed to decide what's going on sometime today.

10-31-2005, 08:02 PM
Soon as I find anything out, I'll let you know. Only thing I have heard so far is that Bernath Sensei is supposed to decide what's going on sometime today.

Well, I see it has been cancelled. I'm still heading down that way. Going to train with one of my former dojo mates for the weekend.


11-02-2005, 09:07 PM
Hey, Karen, I just got the internet back today. And as you already know, there is no seminar. However, the dojo has power and will re-open on Saturday for regular classes.

If anyone is coming down to visit, just watch out for the lines going into the park and tell the police/park rangers you are coming to aikido dojo and they should let you into the parking lot.

11-16-2005, 04:34 PM
FEBRUARY 3-5, 2006

We are happy to announce that the Florida Winter Seminar has been re-scheduled for February 3-5, 2006. Because of hurricane Wilma our 25th anniversary will truly be a "Winter" seminar and a chance to escape from the cold for a few days of Florida sunshine.

Our feature instructors will remain Yamada, Sugano and Shibata Shihan. We are grateful they were able to arrange their busy schedules on such short notice. Senior USAF instructors will also teach classes. A revised class schedule will be posted on the site shortly.

The biggest change is that we have a new location for the seminar itself. In fact, we are having the seminar classes in the ballroom of our hotel, the Ramada Plaza Beach Resort, located at 4060 Galt Ocean Drive, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33308. You won't even have to rent a car!

The ballroom is a big open space with french doors that open to the pool deck with a beautiful ocean view. Complete seminar information will be mailed to dojos and also posted on our web site.

All Ramada hotel rooms offer an ocean side view and have refrigerators and microwaves. The hotel features a nightclub/bar with live music, restaurant, outside tiki bar, giant Jacuzzi, pool, private beach and water sport rentals. The hotel restaurant will also provide a breakfast and lunch buffet for our convenience.

The room rate is $139.00 per night for single, double, or triple occupancy. For reservations please contact the Ramada directly by calling call toll free 800-678-9022 or locally 954-565-6611. Ask for the Aikido discounted rate. THE DEADLINE FOR ROOM RESERVATIONS IS JANUARY 2, 2006.

Our seminar party will be at the hotel on Saturday evening. February 5th is super bowl weekend, so we will also be hosting a super bowl party at the hotel on Sunday so we can all enjoy the game together.

We hope that this seminar arrangement will help make our 25th anniversary a special occasion and maximize everyone's time to both train and enjoy a Florida vacation. See you in February.

02-05-2006, 05:20 PM
As some of you may know we had to postpone Winter Camp to February due to Hurricane Wilma striking the South Florida area a week before it was scheduled to occur.

Well, things finally came together and the seminar started on Friday. Due to a change of location -- the Holiday Park gym to the hotel ballroom and due to the number of people sensei added in extra classes and included extra dan and "kyu" (yeah, right) classes.


Yamada Sensei kicked the seminar off in the first "kyu" class. Sensei announced at the beginning of class that he was "colored blind" and that he couldn't tell the difference between white and black belt so everyone could train. Sensei emphasized taking uke's balance as your entered irimi from the ai hanmi grab. He taught basic techniques from ai hanmi katatetori we did kokyunage, kotegaeshi, shihonage and nikkyo. At the end of class Sensei announced that he was no longer "colored blind" and that the next class will be for dans only. In that class he taught the same techniques from attacks. Also, I took the opportunity to take some pictures, and so did Karen. Karen and I were like the Yamada Sensei paparazzi. "Yamada Sensei, look here!" Well, we didn't really do that, but we wanted to at least.

The third class was taught by Donovan Waite Sensei.
We worked on the uchi opening and did ude garuma from standing then from suwari waza. Then we did nikkyo ura from standing then nikkyo ura from kneeling. Donovan emphasized moving both your hand and foot at the same time. What I realized if I don't over think what I'm doing and just imitate his movement that the technique falls in place much easier.

We then had a four hour break for lunch. Clyde Takeguchi, sensei kicked off the afternoon classes. I really enjoyed his teaching method. He would have us work on various openings of a technique to a strech and then we would all break up into groups. I remember one set with iriminage he did three entering "depths". On the first you enter irimi but infront of nage and you do kokyunage, then the middle you do iriminage, then the deepest you end up behind nage you do more of an ushironage throw. Also, he emphasize the balance taking points on each.

Then the next two classes were by Shibata Sensei. I made it through about half the class, and I don't really remember much of what we worked on. I tried to take pictures but it was so hot in the room that my camera lens fogged up.

Saturday-- the longest day of the seminar

Penny Bernath kicked of the day at 9:00 and taught what we call at Florida Aikikai a "Penny Class." But considering we were practicially on the same size mat we have in dojo. (We used our tatami from the dojo plus about 12 other old mats from another school.) Penny started the class with the tenkan throw and she ased us to work in groups of three. Well we had so many people on the mat we worked in groups small enought to get through the line quickly enough before she had us do something new. I was in a line of about 6-8 people, and we could only use about two tatami length ways. After tenkan throw, we did it in hanmi handachi, then we did the irimi throw standing then hanmi handachi, then we likewise did: tenshin, uchi and soto. Then after doing each one individually we mixed up all five openings. After that Penny had us do any technique from g.h. katatetori (the same attack we've been using the whole time) then while utilizing the same openings perform a technique.

The next two classes were by Yamada Sensei and like the previous day we had a "kyu" class and a dan class. It's "kyu" because everyone is allowed on the mat. I took the kyu class. I really don't remember what we worked on. And once again during the dan class I was taking pictures.

Then we had testing: only about 11 tests in all, which is really small amount of tests for Winter Camp, but many people either tested at the seminar in New York in December or at their own dojo. We had three people test and they all did really well. I was really happy for my one friend who tested for nidan. He moved away to Texas last year and we all really miss him. He's like an uncle to me as I've always been able to talk to him about my Dad, Mom and other family stuff. Also, or guy going for sandan had really nice clean technique and really had a great test. The shodan had the biggest change. Sensei actually had an ukemi test where he would call up another higher rank to throw the shodan candidate around. They all did great and they all passed.

The evening classes were kicked off by Shibata Sensei and this time I took his first class. I really don't remember what he taught but I am beggining to really grasp what he's demonstating. For example we worked on gyakyu hanmi kotegaeshi and reverse kotegaeshi. He demonstarted both at the same time. I began to realize that he was demonstrating different but related techniques. The next class he taught was for all dans, and this time I was able to take pictures.

And Peter Bernath closed the evening teachnig techniques from morotetori. We first did variations of kokyunage. He did an irimi and two different tenkan variations. Then we did a one-handed shihonage. Here, I was working with this really big man -- tall, and big. The thing with this technique is it depends on nage holding on as it is more of a connection exercise. I think I annoyed him a bit because I was trying to tell him how it works. He finally asked me where I traind and I said with Peter. He was like, "oh, so you're familiar with this technique." I said, "yes, and I know what he's trying to teach you." Well, we didn't much any where and thankfully the technique changed soon. We were on to line drills this time. One was two different versions of kaitennage with a tenshin opening. You would perform it on each one of nage's hands -- the top one or the bottom one.

Then the night was over and on to the cocktail party. Thankfully, Karen allowed me to stay in her room along with Mary and Gaia (from AikiWeb). I got to take shower in their room along with my friend Mina. I went out with some of my dojomates for dinner after the cocktail party then back to the hotel. I think the four of us stayed up till about 11:30 talking, and I know we all could have stayed up all night talking.

The next morning we had two 90 minute classes. Shibata Sensei taught the first class and Yamada Sensei taught the second. I took part of Shibata Sensei's class but then got off the mat because I got really moody and grumpy and little anxious, too. But I did get to practice with Gaia here. I had fun training with her. I need to get off the mat. But I got back on for Yamada Sensei's class, and I'm really glad I did. It was a really great class. We worked on techniques from Shomenuchi. He did a lot of "break fall techniques" sumi otoshi, maki otoshi and uki otoshi. Lots of fun, and for the first time at a winter camp I didn't bow out and avoid the breakfalls. I just jumped right in and got throw into them like a big girl!

Well, at the end of the seminar Yamada Sensei announced that Winter Camp will be in February again, and at the hotel in the ball room. Everyone really liked having classes in the same hotel -- although we could have used more mat space. I think this helped add a lot more camaraderie to the seminar than previous ones.

Also, I had a really great time hanging out with Karen, Mary, and Gaia. They are some pretty great ladies even though they like to wear bathing suits and to swim in the "cold" Florida Winter.

See you all next year!!!!!