Students at Pollet’s Martial Arts Centre received a rare treat last weekend when Grand Master Kiichi Nakamoto paid a visit and passed on some of his incredible experience.
Nakamoto, of Okinawa in Japan, has made a number of trips to Australia and the central west but any chance to learn from one of the most renowned names in martial arts is a special experience, according to local Sensei Matt March.
“It’s a rare opportunity to train with someone as renowned as him, someone whose whole life has been dedicated to the art,” March said of Nakamoto.
“It’s an outstanding opportunity to have the seminar with him and I was happy to secure one at Dubbo.”
Nakamoto arrived at Dubbo on Friday and that night ran a Goju karate lesson with members of the local CENTRE, as well as some of those who had travelled from Nyngan.
On Saturday, there was a weapons seminar and lesson, again in front of a big crowd, and March said the whole experience was special for the local students.
March said you only needed to look at some of Nakamoto’s honours and achievements to realise how prestigious it really is to be in his company.
“It’s a 100% pure conveyance of the the art, tradition and culture,” March said of Nakamoto’s life in karate.
“It’s the stuff made of tales. He’s the last in a line of bodyguards to the Okinawan king and one of the last living guys to train under the Miagi Sensei.”
“He’s certainly among the highest in the world in Okinawan karate and his grandson was there too and he’s been doing it for a long time. We got great numbers to both, especially considering the weather.”
Nakamoto is the last living student of the Okinawan Goju-Ryu Karate founder, Chojun Miyagi, but is only a couple of steps from the Dubbo centre as one of his pupils in March’s teacher.
The timing of the lessons could not have come at a better time, with a number of students set to take part in national and international circuits in the near future.
As well as that, some students are currently in state teams and pushing on towards national honours.
If that was impressive enough, once in the national side all competitors have the chance to qualify for the Olympics, with karate returning to the Games in Japan in 2020.
“I’m very proud of how my students are committed to the importance of lessons and the way they listened to the Grand Master and they offered him gifts and made his stay very good,” he said.
March described the experience as a “beautiful thing” for the Dubbo centre.