Shindo Karate's Sensei Alan Hill journey to japan was recently featured on the Okinawa Traditional Karate Liaison Bureau website. The entire article and can be found below.
Australian Karatemen rediscovering karate
With no connection with Okinawa and its karate world, Alan Hill, Robert Maloney and Paul Veldman from Melbourne Australia contacted our karate bureau for the first time in September 2012 to organize a week of training and discovery of the birth place of karate. Alan Hill (57) is a 3rd dan in Shindo Karate which is based on the Shotokan system while Robert Maloney and Paul Veldman practice Shito-ryu Shukokai karate. Paul is also the owner of one of Victoria’s most successful and innovative martial centers, Kando Martial Arts.
Discussing with Alan, it became clear that the 3 karate instructors were looking for the roots of karate and Shotokan, to say Shurite/Shorin-ryu. Having introduced the elite masters of the island, Alan decided to request tuition to the Shidokan Dojo of late Miyahira Katsuya sensei. Having accepted their request, Maeshiro Morinobu sensei, 9th dan and one of the top instructors at the Shidokan Headquarters took them under his wing the day following their arrival.
Reaching Naha on Sunday May 12 and staying until May 18, they trained every day in the morning, while joining Maeshiro sensei regular class at night time and training at the Shidokan headquarters on Monday and Friday. Daytime, they sightsaw the island, took a special karate tour visiting Shuri, Tomari and Naha and the many karate monuments that are located in these famous places and visited the karate museum of Hokama sensei. As they also requested it, they visited a Uechi-ryu Dojo. Shimabukuro Haruyoshi sensei, one of the top instructors of the Uechi-ryu Karatedo Kyokai under Uechi Kanmei sensei, 3rd Soke of the Uechi-ryu family was their host. They viewed a terrific training of kata, conditioning and kumite before enjoying a few drinks on the floor of the dojo. Like Robert said, “We are realizing the dream of every single karate fan: to be in Okinawa and in Okinawan dojos!”
Friday saw another tour in southern part of the island, with the visit of Seifa Utaki, the Chinen Castle ruins and the dojo of late Nakazato Joen sensei and a last training at the Shidokan. For this last training, Takara Meiyu sensei and many top instructors were present and corrected the 3 Australians in their kata, with many bunkai demonstrated by Takara sensei himself.
After a few drinks on the floor of the honbu dojo with the masters of Shidokan, this week in Okinawa ended with some moments of relaxation at Miyazato Eiko sensei’s pub. While Eiko sensei was traveling to Canada for a series of demonstrations with Tokashiki Iken sensei of Gohaku-kai, the staff of the pub performed a great stage with the entire kobudo arsenal in front of the happy Ozzie karateka!
“When bowing at the honbu, you don’t do it only to the masters present on the floor, but you do it to Mastsumura Sokon and the many masters who paved the way. Unforgettable!” Robert Maloney.