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Encyclopedia of Baldwin Wallace University History: Organizations - K

An Index of Historical Content and Their Sources

◄ Encyclopedia of Baldwin Wallace University History: Organizations - I

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Karate Club

Citation: Exponent (Berea, OH), March 13, 1970, p. 3.

Attention all Professors: There are some students on campus that are interested in forming a Karate Club. Those students have their hands tied, since there is no professor willing to become their advisor. If there is any professor interested in becoming the Club's advisor contact K. Kalas at 267-9016 after 5 p.m. or D. Kalas at Hulet Hall

Citation: “Karate Club Captures Tournament Trophies,” The Exponent (Berea, OH), February 23, 1979, p. 8.

“The beginning class concentrates on each of their moves.” Source: Page 183, Grindstone, 1982. Click on the image to enlarge.

Six trophies were earned by members of the B-W Karate Club at Lakewood Judo and Karate School monthly tournament February 18. A total of nine B-W students competed in the tournament. The six who won trophies placed as follows:

-two in second place
-three in third place
-and one in fourth place

For a club that's a month and a half old, they did exceptionally well in this tournament. "At the end of next quarter, we should have a national champion among us," said James LaRocco, the club Instructor, who has a fourth dan black belt.

David Bunce placed second in the White Belt Sparring division. Elaine Beno, Grant Dawson, and Larry Keys, all won third place trophies: Beno for Advanced Women's Sparring; Dawson in White Belt Men's Sparring? and Keys in Green Beit Men's Sparring.

Mikki Quinones placed fourth in White Belt Women's Sparring. "I felt like a rooster in a cock fight," exclaimed Quinones.

The club meets twice a week, Wednesdays and Sundays at 7 p.m. in the Findley Dining Hall. Membership in the club is $10 per month.

"It's a hell of a lot of fun," concluded Linda Piwkowski.

Citation: Randy Cloesmeyer,“Why Was He Barefoot?,” The Exponent (Berea, OH), April 18, 1980, p. 10.

I felt as If everyone were staring at me as I entered the old Findley dining hall. I was, after all, the only one in the room wearing shoes.

At a Karate Club session, about 30 men and women of all ages go through rigorous warmups and drills reminiscent of the old discipline.

I was greeted at the door by Lisa Bock, Karate Club president and green belt aspiring toward black. In addition to karate, Lisa, also runs and dances.

The group is divided to give beginners a chance to learn at their own pace. Students agree this is one of the club's ' good points.  

Instructor Floyd Konet leads the beginners through drills that teach them the basics. "They enjoy hard work, and I tend to push them a little bit," says Konet, a black belt.

Few students mentioned the self-defense aspect of the club. They stress karate's importance as exercise. However, the instructors will occasionally ' break from routine to demonstrate self-defense techniques.

Konet and Veneskey stress exercise because beginners are just not ready for many of the self-defense techniques. Said Veneskey, "It only takes eight pounds of pressure to break every bone in your foot." Needless to say, the instructors are very careful with the students.

Membership is growing, due in part to the acceptance of non-BW students into the club. Lisa hopes that more BW girls will join because the group is predominantly male.

Anyon wishing to join the Karate Club can go to the Findley dining hall any Monday or Wednesday night at 7:30.

Citation: Jeanne Takeda, ed., "Isshinryu Karate Club," Grindstone (Berea, OH: Baldwin-Wallace College, 1982), p. 183.

Isshinryu Karate is one of many styles of self-defense now in the United States. The style studied here at B-W is originally from Okinawa, Japan. This style is not "showy", it teaches a well balance of both hand and feet techniques.

The club itself is about 15-35 members strong. The size varies with the quarter and students course load. The club works out together on Mondays and Wednesdays at night in Findley. This may not seem like alot of time, but the 1 1/2 hour work out leaves you tired and feeling good about yourself, if you finally learn that one stance that you were getting wrong or a move that finally worked out right in sparring. "The club's members, I feel become a family of closely knit individuals that share something only each member can experience," says club president Jeanne Takeda.

The club is taught by a fourth dan black belt Jerry Venesky and a first dan black belt Floyd Konet. There are always visiting black belts that help teach like John Akagi, Gary Yano, Greg Guzik, and Dale Janoviac.

The club this year added some high rank to help next year's group. The club finally promoted its first black belt to senior Tim Rick, who was also the club's vice-president. The promotion of four brown belts of which two were B-W students, Larry Cole and Mike Malicky.

"This year's class was the best ever in learning and discipline," says instructor Floyd Konet. "I really enjoyed teaching this year and to the students that stayed for the entire year you have shown improvement," said instructor Jerry Venesky.

Citation: “Karate Club Offers Realization of the Essential,” The Exponent (Berea, OH), January 31, 1985, p. 4.

The B-W Karate Club will be resuming classes on Mondays and Wednesdays at 7-8:30 p.m.

The Karate Club will be under the direction of B-W graduate, Jeff Ellis. Ellis is currently a Fourth Dan Black Belt and Director and Chief Instructor of the Southwest Karate Association. The Southwest Karate Association has been offering traditional karate programs in this area for over thirteen years.

The system of karate to be taught in the $30 per quarter classes is called Kwan Mu Kan, (Kwan Mu interprets as realization of the essential) a traditional system of karate with a Japanese base. Ellis's instructor, George Anderson (Seventh Dan) is founder of Kwan Mu Kan and is respected throughout the world due to his technical knowledge, abilities and high degree of standards.

The Kwan Mu Kan is very active in Amateur Athletic Union competition and as Chairman of the National A.A.U. Karate Committee, Anderson has made great progress at putting karate in the 1988 or 1992 Olympic games.

There is also strong interest within the A.A.U. Karate Committee to begin organized collegiate competition. According to Ellis, also coach of the U.S. Junior National Karate team, during the 1985 National A.A.U. Karate Championship to be held in New Orleans in August, a high school team and a collegiate team from Japan's national team will compete against the U.S. team.

“The beginning class concentrates on each of their moves.” Source: Page 183, Grindstone, 1982. Click on the image to enlarge.

Click on the image to enlarge.

"The next several years will prove to be very encouraging for anyone with the desire of World Class Karate Competition," said Ellis. "We will be looking to develop men and women in their late teens and early twenties as they will be the future Olympic Karate team candidates."

Competition is not only what the B-W Karate Club will encourage.

"Perhaps more importantly, the key to our success, " says Ellis, "has been our overall philosophy in teaching traditional karate; of instilling a learning and growth experience of the entire person, not just physically, but mentally and spiritually as well."

In this regard, karate is viewed by the Southwest Karate Association as a character building art, rather than solely as a fighting art, as its intention hundred of years ago.

Through proper training self-discipline is acquired self-image is enhanced by' one's accomplishments, increased levels of concentration are reached, and an overall better sense of wellbeing and respect for one's self and others is attained.

It will be the purpose of the B-W Karate Club and Ellis that these kind of traits are strengthened in all those who participate. Hopefully, each student may transfer these traits to their everyday living (school, work, etc.) and add to the accomplishment of any goal they might encounter.

For those interested in the B-W Karate Club stop to see the demonstration Wednesday, February 6 at 6:30 p.m. in the Student Union Call 826-7341 or 826-7642 for further information.

Citation: “Local Karate Kid B-W Student Kicks His Way to Awards,” The Exponent (Berea, OH), April 4, 1985, p. 6.

On Saturday, March 30, the Cleveland American Amateur Union karate championships, sanctioned by the Lake Eric AAU Association and sponsored by the Southwest Karate Association took place at the Center Junior High in Strongsville.

Larry Whelan, freshman, competed in advanced visisions of kumite (sparring), weapons-kata, and open kata and captured unfounded triple gold medals in those divisions.

This competition was part of a preparation for the upcoming district championship in Akron which is a ' qualifying tournament for the semi-national champion ship of USA later this year.

We hope that Larry will continue on this track and bring some additional recognition to the recently reorganized B-W Karate Club and thus help the club achieve its high, long term goals.

Citation: “Join Karate Club,” The Exponent (Berea, OH), October 7, 1987, p. 16.

B-W Karate Club invites all to join. The system of Karate taught by the B-W Karate Club is "Kwanmukan", a traditional Japanese system.

The chief instructor of the club is Mr. Jeff Ellis. Mr. Ellis is a certified 4th Dan Black Belt and a B-W faculty member.