It’s time for Sevenoaks members to ‘belt up’ after making the grade at Invicta Karate Academy
INVICTA Karate Academy was delighted to see some of its Sevenoaks members move up a belt at the September grading.
The grading was taken by Sensei Dave Paulus 5th Dan JKA from JKA England Headquarters after a hard and challenging seminar.
Training has certainly paid off for two of the academy’s recent graders, Patrick Rothwell and Henry Forsyth. Academy founder, Toby Price, said: “We are very proud of all our graders including Henry and Patrick. All executed their Kata with confidence and performed well under the pressure of grading conditions”
Running traditional Shotokan Karate classes in Sevenoaks since 2011, Invicta Karate Academy is growing substantially month on month currently numbering 70 students. Invicta caters for the community with classes for children aged four and upwards through to both a popular adults and personal training programme.
Sensei Toby, a former World Cup England Squad Member and National Champion, explains more about the aims of the Academy and its focus.
He said: “I have been training in Shotokan Karate since I was four years of age and a natural progression is to want to pass on knowledge that you have acquired. Some of students have been with us now since we first started. The motto of the Academy is ‘Strength through Focus’ and we try to instil this in every class. There is so much going on now in today’s world for both children and adults with social media and the like that we find our students welcome the opportunity to come and just concentrate on training. Even the little ones get to blow off a bit of steam.
“At Invicta, we encourage truth and responsibility. Although we teach comprehensive lessons and support our student’s development, we also push our students to be truthful about where they are in their progression and subsequently take responsibility for their individual training.
“We find that this helps our Students find their personal strength and develop self-awareness which together build both character and confidence.”
Invicta Karate Academy – how it all started
by Toby Price, Head Instructor and founder
AT some point my mother decided that I was either making too much noise around the house or needed some extra education. A nearby local leisure centre had a well established Karate Club that had grown considerably, so my mother took me and my sister along – and this is how my lifelong enthusiasm for this martial art began.
It was the boom time of Karate in the very early 80s and it was not unusual to see 100 students of all ages training in one lesson. Somehow, although the lessons were focused on how to fight and defend yourself, my sister and I and the students left the Dojo more relaxed and less stressed. Almost 40 years on, I am still in contact with my first teacher from Orpington Shotokan Karate Club which is a testament to the bonds of Karate training.
In my late teens, I took a break from Karate and went to University and ended up working in Spain in my holidays and studying in both Paris and Frankfurt. I studied languages (French, German, Spanish and Italian) and, upon graduating, I became an Entertainments Manager in Spanish hotels before moving on to leading escorted tour groups around Europe and around the World.
I seriously doubt I would have had the confidence and composure to lead groups of mixed ages through India, China and the US on long haul tours (three to four weeks in length) if I had not trained in Karate and been tested regularly by both my instructors and co-students.
Upon coming back to the UK permanently, I returned to Karate training and for fun entered the Nation Championships in 2009. I fought six fights that day and ended up on the podium in first place as National Champion.
Invitation to the National Squad followed shortly after. In my time on the Squad, I fought in two international friendlies against Norway and Japan along with the European Championships and finally the 2011 World Cup in Pattaya, Thailand. Annoyingly the only one of my fights to be on youtube – you can see it by clicking here – is my World cup team fight against Canada in which I lost!
In 2011, I took the Southern Areas Championship and retired from competition at that point. I focused my attention on my own training and teaching this martial art which has given me so much.
Invicta Karate Academy is run on our core values and framed in the Karate heritage that I personally have. Traditional yet forward looking, being truthful with yourself and your fellow students, taking responsibility for your actions and development. As well as our standard training, students are encouraged to identify areas where they can grow
and develop their skills. We also run an Instructors program where students are encouraged to develop leadership skills through assisting at classes.
As mentioned above, our Academy motto is ‘Strength through Focus’, and if you are able to direct your focus on to one area and go through the right preparation there is nothing you can’t achieve.
Invicta Karate Academy offers classes from the age of four with our Little Tigers program. Our beginners start in Karate Level 1 and continue into our Level 2 program. Alongside this we also offer an Adults only program which is very popular. It is a great group which is welcoming and friendly focused on effective training and learning.
I get a lot out of teaching and seeing our students develop no matter what the age. Today our classes are vibrant, positive and effective and we are really enjoying our involvement with the local community.