February 3

The 2012 10th Annual Supreme Way Challenge is in Pekin on March 10

This year’s Supreme Way Challenge is located in Pekin at the Moose Lodge. The March 10 event features Forms (Kata), Sparring (Kumite) and Weapons (Kobudo). Special events include Chanbarra, Self-defense, and Three-person Team Synchronized Kata.

Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the tournament begins at 11.

As you’ll see, the tournament organizers require the following safety equipment: Foam headgear, hand pads, foot pads, mouth guard and groin cup for male competitors.

The tournament is hosted by Frank and Patricia Fink of Kosho Kai Karate in Pekin. For more information, I’ll include the tournament flyer, registration form and rules summary.

The Finks can be contacted via email or at 309-353-8639.

The last time Metamora Martial Arts competed in the Supreme Way Challenge was 2007.

May 20

MMAL 2011 Illinois Martial Arts Championship in Hoffman Estates, Illinois – Saturday, July 30

The Midwest Martial Arts League presents the 2011 MMAL Illinois Championship at the Hoffman Estates Community Center on Saturday, July 30, 2011.

Registration by July 1 for two events is $40, plus $5 for each additional event. Add $5 to each value after July 1, including at the door. There is a $5 discount for MMAL members.

Events include Forms – which includes Traditional, Creative, Team and Weapons forms – Self-Defense Routines and Light Contact Point Sparring. More than 100 divisions are expected.

Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m. and the tournament begins at 10:15 a.m.

The tournament is sponsored in part by Tiger Claw, and has a AAA-sanctioned rating. Custom medals and trophies will be awarded.

To get all of the details regarding this tournament, we have provided the PDFs sent to us by Mr. Valin…

2011 MMAL Illinois Championship flyer

2011 MMAL Illinois Championship information packet and registration form

If you still have any questions, please contact Master Dan Valin of the Midwest Martial Arts league at 847-815-0898 or email him at matkd[at]prodigy.net. You can also visit MMAL online, though the Facebook event points to last year’s tournament.

March 8

Upcoming: Illinois Valley Karate Tournament on April 17, 2011

Martial arts tournament promoter Gary Gillette will be hosting the Illinois Valley Karate Tournament in Morris, Ill., on April 17, 2011.

It will take place at Shabbona Middle School in Morris, and the tournament’s events include chanbara, self-defense, weapons, kata and kumite. Medals for 1st through 4th place will be awarded for chanbara and self-defense. Awards for the rest of the events include etched glass mugs for 1st through 3rd place and medals for 4th place. A grand champion will be awarded for men and women’s kumite.

Prices start at $40.

This tournament is a Professional Karate Commission-sanctioned event.

Download the information packet for the Illinois Valley Karate Tournament 2011, which includes more details on divisions and times.

Shabonna Middle School
725 School Street
Morris, IL 60450

Gary Gillette
815-941-9790 or garygillette@sbcglobal.net

February 2

3 things we can learn from Anderson Cooper being attacked in Egypt

Anderson Cooper could tell us more than you might think about self-defense.

Today, while reporting on the Egyptian protests, CNN’s Anderson Cooper was attacked by members of a crowd in Cairo. Cooper said he was punched “like, 10 times in the head,” while passing at least one protester with a knife.

Despite being in the middle of a dangerous situation, Cooper eventually made it to safety.

I thought I’d point out some important lessons that Cooper’s incident in Egypt can teach us as martial artists.

Know what makes you a target

If you’re not going somewhere you expect will be dangerous, you might not have to address this issue as much. However, if you’re Anderson Cooper heading into demonstrations that have garnered worldwide coverage, you may want to know how you’ll attract attention.

“Anybody with a camera was a target on the streets of Cairo today,” Cooper said.

Having armed yourself with this information, you can attempt to make plans.

Work in groups

When you are entering a potentially violent situation, such as these demonstrations in Egypt, don’t go alone.

Being on air, journalists typically can’t both operate a camera and report the news. In this case, Cooper had a Flip camera and was filming himself as he reported. Without a doubt, he was accompanied by a CNN camera crew, and probably translators and guides.

If Cooper had ventured out by himself and tried filming with his Flip camera, he may not have gotten out as safely as he did.

Walk, don’t run

Cooper said in the video that he and his crew were “walking, not running so as to incite the crowd even further.”

Running would be a considerable sudden movement. In much of the footage I’ve seen, demonstrators have simply been walking. You’ve heard in movies not to make sudden moves in front of an animal. Surely the animal that is the group of demonstrators would have been on high alert with a strange man (or group of people) running through the crowd.

If you find yourself in a situation like this, use these tips and common sense. Anderson Cooper seemed to do all of the logical things – he knew that the camera would attract unwanted attention so he went in a group, and he tried to downplay the situation even further by just trying to escape.

Neither Cooper nor his crew tried to impress anybody by attacking the Egyptian protesters, but tried to quietly exit a volatile situation.

Update 2/16/11: Although Cooper escaped his incident, other journalists have not been so lucky. Last night, we found out that journalist Lara Logan was beaten and sexually assaulted by a mob until she was rescued by a group of women and members of the Egyptian military, according to CNN.