Peter Dandy
1st Dan Black Belt E.C.K.A
(English Contact Karate Association)
Boxing and Thai Boxing training

Well to begin with I started training in karate with E.C.K.A some thirteen years ago; I found their system more suited to me, being they stem from Shotokan but have moved their own way in terms of teaching and style.

The reason I took up karate was not because of wanting to imitate Bruce Lee (well not solely), but a friend of mine called Adam Satter really inspired me.

At school he was a bit of a wimp and not very confident but now working with him some four years after school he was a changed man – able to do impressive kicks onto cooking timers (in a fast food kitchen), with such control and speed that I became so interested that I went the following Monday to the place that he trained and enrolled.

That was it – I was hooked, training at first once a week.

After three months of training I entered my first competition to the amusement of my instructor who told me students normally wait a year or so.

“I Went, I Saw, I didn’t so much conquer” but I did win a trophy!

Training went from once a week to twice, then five times a week, always trying to learn something new, pestering most instructors until they allowed me to train with them, even if they were higher grades.

I found I always learned something new, or a different way of doing a technique, entering more competitions around England and even to Germany and Holland with some success, all the time enjoying not just the winning but the shared knowledge and reality of applying techniques.

This all happened in Birmingham.

I moved to Oxford, looking long and hard for an art that would not mirror my art, but take me in a new direction and again open my mind to other ways of learning without forcing me to forget what I have learned.

In my search I saw various arts and styles, but S.O.M.A is the one that I felt drawn to by its movement and speed to learn a simple technique which can be applied easily and so effectively!

This School gave me a new insight into martial arts, a lot of which I had not considered.

This school’s thought and vision has given me a far wider range of techniques and views and a real eye-opener into the depths of martial arts and now I feel a more rounded practitioner.

A ‘class’ is made up of various Black Belts from different martial art disciplines and students at different levels; all mixing in with scenarios and techniques led by the Sifu and Founder of The School Of Martial Arts – SOMA.

We all absorb not just one idea but many views to give a realistic application of how they may be used in the real world should the need arise.

July 2003