Karate classes at the YMCA expanding

The Greater Marco Family YMCA is the home for the Karate Dojo of Sensei Nick Lemke. Sensei Lemke approached the Y about a year ago and offered to teach Seibukan Karate at the Y and see if any interest could be generated to sustain such a program.

Well, the program has become a huge success and now will be expanding its menu to the Marco Y members and the public.

Lemke says the school teaches an Okinawan style of karate, called Seibukan Shorin-Ryu. The Dojo trains students from 6 years of age to adults. The students will learn discipline, character, confidence, physical and mental strength, and most importantly self defense. Class times vary throughout the week and there is also an after-school program for kids on Tuesday and Thursday, from 3:30 to 4: 40 p.m.

The monthly fee for Marco Y members is $30 and $55 for the community.

All students are required to purchase a uniform called a Gi and patch for $30. Membership in the Amateur Athletic Union is also required at a cost of $14 a year for those up to age 20 and $27 a year for those over 20.

A Saturday Seibukan Karate session will be offered once a month, starting on Feb. 18. This advanced class is open to participants who have attained a colored belt and is scheduled from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The class will focus on body toughening (Kotekite), basic exercise (Kihon Renshu), prearranged fighting movements (Kata/Bo, floor exercises (Zenshin Kotai) and two-man fighting drills to stop a continuous attack ( Ippon Kumite). Class fees are $35 per session for Marco Y members and $45 for the community.

Lemke also teaches an Okinawan Style of traditional weapons called Matayoshi Kobudo. Students below the age of 13 will be taken on a case-by-case basis. All other ages, men and women, are welcome. ,

The Matayoshi Family has been practicing Kobudo and martial arts for nearly 1,000 years as the emperor of Japan’s personal guards. The curriculum begins by training with the “Bo” staff, a 6-foot stick, a “Sai: 2 large iron-like forks and then the “Tonqu” which are similar to batons used by police. Seibukan Karate experience is helpful for building the mind, body and spirit necessary for weaponry. Three months of Seibukan Karate is recommended.

Matayoshi Kobudo Classes are ongoing. Classes are scheduled on Tuesday and Thursday, 6 to 8 p.m. and are $30 per month for Y members and $55 for the community. If you are registered in the Karate program, then your cost is $20 per month. Gi and AAU membership is required for this program.

Lemke invites those interested to view a class and join the programs offered. Call 239-394-9622, ext. 222 for complete schedules.

Coming up is a Women’s Self Defense Course and a tasty Blue Crab Fundraiser Picnic on March 3.

Lemke is also the instructor for the Marco Y’s Adult Computer Lessons that are held from November through April. If you need instruction on a Windows-based or Apple/MAC system, then Lemke is your person.

Adult computer classes are on Monday and Wednesday. They are $35 per session for Marco Y members and $50 a session for community. Stop at, or call, the Customer Service Desk for a schedule of classes and times.

Visit the Greater Marco Family YMCA‘s website at www.marcoislandymca.org; follow us on Facebook@greatermarcofamily ymca and sign up for tweets @ YMCAMarco.

Have a great week and we will see you at your Greater Marco Family YMCA.

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Comments » 1

rcsaxby writes:

This is cool. I didn't know that part about the Matayoshi Family practicing Kobudo and martial arts for nearly 1,000 years as the emperor of Japan’s personal guards. That' pretty cool. I would love to learn the bo staff that would be awesome.

Rick Saxby,
Publisher, FightingPhilosophy.com

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