Sugasawa Sensei

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Sugasawa Sensei founded Shikukai in 1990 after breaking away from the UKKW.

In 1994 Sugasawa Sensei was presented with the “Ko Ro Sho”; a special award by the grandmaster, acknowledging his contribution to Wado Ryu karate and his dedication and service to the Renmei.

The name “Shikukai” has its own history. It originally derives from the club name of the Meiji University Tokyo karate club “old boys” association, and can mean either, “forty nine club” (or Association) or, “Association of Honourable Gentlemen”.

Shikukai has gained steadily since its foundation and has experienced success in many areas. Shikukai members have advanced to senior positions and have become respected instructors in their own right.

Shikukai now has a nucleus of clubs run by a dedicated group of senior instructors, all striving towards one aim; to ensure the perpetuation of pure Wado Ryu technique in the spirit intended by the late grandmaster and his successor.

A short biographical profile of Sugasawa Sensei.

Fumio Sugasawa was born in Sawara City, Chiba Prefecture, sixty miles east of Tokyo, the youngest son in a family of seven children.

His first awareness of karate was when his second eldest brother started training at a local club and erected a makiwara (striking post) at the family home. Although his first love was baseball he used to practice on his brother’s makiwara.

In 1969 he went away to study Commerce at the famous Meiji University, Tokyo. Once there he found himself coerced into joining the university karate club – although he admits it did not take much to persuade him.

As a result of his experiences with his elder brother he had developed a genuine interest in karate. The training at Meiji was severe, but due to his experiences of the physical hardships common in Japanese baseball he had no trouble adapting to the regime.

One of the regular instructors at Meiji was Jiro Ohtsuka Sensei, son and future successor to the founder of Wado Ryu karate Hironori Ohtsuka (1892-1982). The founder also visited and instructed at the university, but Jiro Ohtsuka Sensei had a particular attachment to Meiji, as he was himself a Meiji old boy.

Sugasawa Sensei’s enthusiasm and physical prowess soon gained him the position of Meiji karate club captain, an achievment he is particularly proud of.

He came to the UK in July 1978 and joined a group of resident Japanese instructors responsible for spreading traditional Wado Ryu karate throughout the country. He initially taught in the East London area, but soon established contacts with clubs in all parts of the UK.

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Sugasawa Sensei being interviewed by Robert Vernooy in Hungary.

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