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Harkon72
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Posts: 1875
Location: Wales
Styles: Okinawan Karate, Aikido, Ninpo.

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 4:47 pm    Post subject: Was my so called Sensei a fraud? Reply with quote

I shall name no names or identify the club.

I started training in a Dojo 3 years ago. I was a new style for me, Shukokai Karate. I liked the Sensei, he seemed a good man. As I trained I reached my 3rd Kyu grading this year. I knew that the style was meant to be Shukokai, but I could see that it was much watered down and geared mainly for the instruction of juniors. I had 25 years of Karatedo before stepping through the door, I knew my karate was sound and as I progressed, so did the Sensei and his Sempai. On the night of my 3rd Kyu grading, I did my Khihon and four very powerful Kata, now it was time for the Kumite. The Sempai, a shodan, flatly refused. Now it was up to the Sensei himself, a supposed 5th Dan. He made a lame excuse and he too refused to fight. At the end, this so called Master gave me a 3rd Kyu belt that I hadn't earned and a certificate. I walked out in disgust, shamed and dishonoured. I left my licence behind. 8 months later, I found my licence on the door mat. I had paid for my grading, also for another year's membership, but there was no record in the book. I showed the licence to a friend who is a police officer and a genuine karateka. "That's not a real licence, it's a forgery. They have written out the insurance ticket themselves, that governing body does not exist, and they have no association with the organisations that they claim to have. You were unlicenced and uninsured." This is a true story. The club still runs in our village.
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Lupin1
KF Sempai
KF Sempai

Joined: 15 Dec 2009
Posts: 1603
Location: NH USA
Styles: Isshinryu

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not sure what you mean by license. Is it a certificate of accident insurance? Because if they're committing insurance fraud, that's a matter for the courts.

As for the sparring thing-- have you been known to hurt people while sparring before? Is there anything that would make the Shodan and your sensei afraid to fight you? If so, they shouldn't have graded you just from the fact that a 3rd Kyu should be able to spar with his classmates without hurting them.
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bushido_man96
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 27701
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm confused on the license thing, as well. Could you elaborate on that more?

As for the sparring, I think that is odd. Why would they refuse to spar with you? And do you feel you were ranked undeservedly because you did not spar?
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Harkon72
Black Belt
Black Belt

Joined: 27 Aug 2012
Posts: 1875
Location: Wales
Styles: Okinawan Karate, Aikido, Ninpo.

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the UK, most martial art schools give you a licence book. Therein are your details, your next of kin's contact number for example. Also there is a record of your gradings and any courses you have attended. In the book there should be a licence ticket or certificate that is issued by the governing body every year. This has a number on it, your registration number. Not only did the Sempai fraudulently fill in this ticket herself with a name of an association that does not exist, there was no registration number on the licence ticket or the book itself. Basically, they take your money for grading, registration and insurance but do not pay it to anyone. It is basically an uninsured and unaffiliated club. The grading certificates have various organisations listed as governing bodies, but the club is not registered with any of them. As for the sparring, as I said, the Sempai and the Master refused. I have never hurt anyone while sparring, I have done it for many years in Dojo's and competitions, no-one has ever had reason to fear me, I have good control and I know my boundaries. Why a 5th Dan would give me a grade without a proper test, I don't know; but it goes to show how much respect he has for me as his student and the art of Karatedo. If you ask me, the man is a fraud. Shukokai? It's nothing of the sort; Sensei Kimura would turn in his grave.
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mal103
Purple Belt
Purple Belt

Joined: 21 May 2011
Posts: 559


PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 8:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds familiar... I was part of a club that was taking money for insurance but not buying it, the sensei was a self graded 5th dan who had not lined up in front of anyone for several years and was never seen sparring, in fact their basic skills had faded soo much i have had to re train at other clubs to cure my bad form.
I have since started my own club and use the IMASA for insurance for me and my students. There is no legal requirement to have a licence, this is purely a membership fee of the large governing bodies, associations, federations etc. There isn't even a requirement for insurance but it is very risky not to have it. You can guarantee a personal claim against you if someone is hurt. It is also fraudulent to pretend to have insurance and association/membership.
I'm guessing the lack of sparring was to stop themselves being shown up for what they are - pretenders teaching rubbish karate and cheating people out of money but making them think they were passing grades and becoming good at it.
Without boasting look on my website at the mission statement, this is where we need some form of regulation to bring up the minimum standards and get rid of the pretenders, a club near me just graded and have 2 year black belts and 5th kyus that have only been training a few months - complete belt factory! Some of my 4th kyus are nearly 3 years in and a few of those have just had to skip a grading because they weren't good enough.
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Rig
Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 09 Apr 2003
Posts: 65
Location: Atherstone, UK
Styles: Shukokai Karate, Tai Chi and Qigong

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just trying to play devils advocate here.

There are 2 issues here, 1 of the licence/insurance and the other regarding the grading.

I know some associations that have 'blank' insurance slips and manually fill them in for each students license return, this doesn't make them a forgery, just hand written, the student is still fully insured.

Some associations buy their insurance in batches, say up to 500 students, others pay per student.

I would have asked for details of their insurance company as well as a look at the instructors own insurance certificate, if they can't provide it, why now?

The issue regarding the lack of kumite and the grading, again this may just be down to circumstances, some grading examiners have the ability to waver some requirements in a grading?

Why not give us some clues about who they are?
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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14323
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Before I add my 2 cents, I've a question!

Are you saying that insurance has to be purchased by the student and if they don't, they can't test??


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sensei8
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 23 Feb 2008
Posts: 14323
Location: Houston, TX
Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 10:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Self grading?!?!??


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mal103
Purple Belt
Purple Belt

Joined: 21 May 2011
Posts: 559


PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my experience clubs in the UK charge a joining fee and then a yearly membership fee, these include costs like Licences and insurance, also cover admin, grading books etc.
Some charge 10-20 for the yearly fee, even though most insurances for students are around 3 per year.
The majority of clubs will insist everyone has insurance, if you are injured by someone you can make a claim against theirs, if you injure someone by accident then you should also be covered.
If you are given bad instruction and injure yourself then you can claim against the instructor.
The UK is now full of "no win-no fee" type companies that will make claims against anyone if you think you have been injured and someone else could be to blame. It's not worth the risk of not having it so most clubs will insist on it but normally source it for you, all you do is pay your money and get a bit of paper in your grading/licence book - always check it if unsure!
I wouldn't let anyone grade - or train for much longer - unless it was in date.

Self graders... covered this in another post in the Instructor section "Self grading seniors", I know one who went to 4th without having to do anything and WITHIN A YEAR went to 5th by being a complete fraud!!!
Too busy strutting around saying "I AM!" to realise the extremely disrespectful act they have performed and brought shame on themselves and our art.
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DWx
KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 17 Jan 2007
Posts: 6135
Location: UK
Styles: Tae Kwon Do & Yang family Tai Chi

PostPosted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mal103 wrote:
In my experience clubs in the UK charge a joining fee and then a yearly membership fee, these include costs like Licences and insurance, also cover admin, grading books etc.
Some charge 10-20 for the yearly fee, even though most insurances for students are around 3 per year.
The majority of clubs will insist everyone has insurance, if you are injured by someone you can make a claim against theirs, if you injure someone by accident then you should also be covered.
If you are given bad instruction and injure yourself then you can claim against the instructor.
The UK is now full of "no win-no fee" type companies that will make claims against anyone if you think you have been injured and someone else could be to blame. It's not worth the risk of not having it so most clubs will insist on it but normally source it for you, all you do is pay your money and get a bit of paper in your grading/licence book - always check it if unsure!
I wouldn't let anyone grade - or train for much longer - unless it was in date.

This is spot on what my experience has been. You buy a "license" to train at a school and this includes your insurance for training at the school and at any sanctioned events. It will also typically cover membership to the governing body and anything else the instructor wants to cover with a yearly fee. Most instructors would generally prefer it if you are covered under the same insurance company as everyone else but in theory you could purchase your own policy if you then provide proof to the school.

mal103 wrote:
I know some associations that have 'blank' insurance slips and manually fill them in for each students license return, this doesn't make them a forgery, just hand written, the student is still fully insured.

Some associations buy their insurance in batches, say up to 500 students, others pay per student.

This is also correct from my experience. Instructor's can purchase a bulk set of insurance policies and then sell them on to students as and when they need to. e.g. they buy policies ABC 0001 through to ABC 0999 and then assign them to students that sign up at the club. They then notify the insurance company of the student's details each time they redeem a policy and let the student know their policy or "membership" number. We've always had handwritten slips which can be tucked into our license book (which also serves as a grading record).

If you're in doubt of having had a policy at the school Gareth, you can always ask to see the details of the policy and the name of the company honouring it. Doubt it would be worth the effort arguing over it though if you don't train there any more and have no injury claims to make.
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