Australia Gasshuku with Sensei Bakkies Laubscher

 By: Jamie Tredinnick – IOGKF Australia (IOGKFOZ)

The Newcastle University Forum was the venue for what was another fantastic Australian National Gasshuku with guest IOGKF technical advisor, Sensei Bakkies Laubscher. The weather was cool during the weekend in May and the anticipation high, as the 80 plus students that attended were not disappointed. The first all-grade session on Friday night was one of Sensei’s trademark move and slide combination drills that are always a challenge. The opening session finished off with two man kick and block drills, which would be revisited over the coming days leaving most parts of the body bruised. You knew the big fella had arrived.

Saturday’s initial start to the session was a good warm up and then parts of the combinations from the previous session were revisited. The knee boxing was always going to be a winner. He then added to the combinations and you could see that over the next couple of days the training was going to be first class, as I expected it would be.


The social gathering on Saturday night was a great chance to catch up with the IOGKF members from North and South Queensland, Sydney, Goulburn, Canberra and New Zealand. IOGKF Australian Chief Instructor, Sensei Chris Larken and his team facilitated another successful event that reinforced the cohesion of our organisation.

Sunday’s warm up session was special. Moving forward, backwards, side to side and chanting the count, ichi, ni, san, certainly made it known to the venue that we were there in force and proud to be part of it. We continued on with more combinations, explanation on movement and some excellent self- defence and strength displays. There is a reason why we call him the Big Fella!

The last day finished with Sensei Bakkies taking the black belts, some more battering of the bruised legs just to build that character a little higher, and to finish with a bang. Sensei Larken took the remaining students for Kata, which no doubt was a privilege for them.

It certainly was impressive to see our IOGKF members support this major event and a huge thanks to the New Zealand team for their participation.

Thanks again Sensei Bakkies and Sensei Larken for another excellent Gasshuku. Sensei Bakkies, we look forward to celebrating your “50 Years of Karate” next year on your home soil.