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SSKI Ohio Black-belts with the Chief Instructor


The visit started with a dan grading examination on Thursday 22nd March at the YMCA Springfield, Ohio dojo, where Sean Cary was successful in passing his shodan exam.

Congratulations Sean.

On the Saturday that followed Sensei Phipps held a seminar on the more advanced blocks and strikes of Shotokan karate.

The likes of Kakuto, Washide, Kumade, Seiryuto, Tekubi-kake-uke, Keito-uke, Hiraken and Nagashi-uke were taught and put into a kumite drill which everyone found extremely interesting and all the students thoroughly enjoyed the seminar to the full.  Along with the local Ohio students were guests from a club in Pittsburgh with its sensei, Chuck Kerrigan and one of his senior black-belts, Gus. Also in attendance was sensei Bishop Sanders 4th Dan from Hiram College in North Ohio. The first actual Springfield club session was a lesson on kicking, with the second lesson working on upper body techniques.  Lesson three was a stance lesson with lesson four working on hips, advanced stances and kata and kumite drills mainly working on stances.

The whole trip was a huge success and the Springfield dojo goes from strength to strength under the excellent guidance of sensei Jeff Sanders 4th Dan and sensei Jan Smearsoll 4th Dan. Sensei Phipps will be returning in September for another dan grading, an advanced kata lesson and another four club sessions.  Can’t wait and looking forward to it already!


Updated 18/02/2019

Sensei Paul Carvell Awarded 5th Dan

Sensei Paul Carvell Awarded 5th Dan

At the Hemel Hempstead dojo on Wednesday 27th June 2018, Sensei Paul Carvell was awarded his 5th Dan grade and certificate by the Chief Instructor, Sensei Malcolm Phipps 8th Dan and the ISKS Executive Committee.  Truly well-deserved as Paul has been a loyal student for over 22 years now and passed his 9th Kyu with Sensei Phipps on 6th March 1996.

Paul is also the instructor at the very successful Highfield Community Centre dojo in Hemel Hempstead and is also an association referee.  Many congratulations Paul from all in SSKI.

Contact details

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Chat with Malcolm now on +44 01442 266048
Email: Malcolm at:

Malcolm Phipps
No. 3 The Copse
Hemel Hempstead
Hertfordshire HP1 2TA


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New ETNA Black-belts

On Sunday 1st July at the ETNA nunchaku grading at Hemel Hempstead School there were two new ETNA nunchaku black-belts in the Hemel Hempstead dojo.  Siva Niranjan and Juan Lopez both passed their nunchaku shodan black-belts in real style under the watchful eye of the Chief Instructor, Malcolm Phipps 8th Dan.  Well done to both on a brilliant showing and a great grading.  Also, congratulations to Poonam Anandaraj on passing her green belt.  Oss!

New ETNA Black-belts

SENSEI DAVE HAZARD COURSE (Hemel Hempstead School Dojo – 15/16th September 2018)

Another absolutely amazing course with Sensei Dave Hazard 7th Dan.  The Saturday sessions concentrated on the advanced Shotokan kata, Gojushiho-dai after an hour of excellent kihon. Sunday was taken up with a superb kicking session which was followed by the kata, Hangetsu.  The course finished with another great session, this time on kumite.  Everyone really enjoyed the course and looks forward to sensei returning to the dojo in February next year.  They really don’t come better than Sensei Hazard.

The host of this course, Sensei Malcolm Phipps 8th Dan presented Sue Carson 3rd Dan and Jeff Carson 5th Dan with their Long Service Awards for over 20 years loyalty to SSKI.  Both are instructors of the association’s Bovingdon dojo.  Truly well-deserved and was a lovely finish to a truly wonderful weekend’s karate.

Photo: Sensei Hazard and Sensei Phipps with Jeff and Sue Carson with their Long Service Awards

Many congratulations to Dina Cary and Rafe Cary on passing their shodan gradings on Saturday 27th October at the Springfield, Ohio dojo. Truly well deserved. 
PHOTO: SSKI USA Chief Instructor, Sensei Jan Smearsoll 4th Dan, with her shodans: Sean Cary, Rafe Cary, Dina Cary and Brandon Smearsoll.

Absolutely superb Dan Grading yesterday at the Hemel Hempstead School Dojo. All six participants passed their next grades in real style. The standard was exceptional and many congratulations to the following:

Sandan: Stephanie Farrer and Steven Barton.
Nidan: Phillip Chiverton, Carl McCormick, Juan Lopez and Andre Cove.
Panel: Sensei Malcolm Phipps 8th Dan, Sensei Tony Bunting 7th Dan and Sensei Jeff Carson 5th Dan.


It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I have to report the passing of our great friend and Ex-Chief Instructor for SSKI USA, Sensei Jeff Sanders 4th Dan, who passed away peacefully in hospital early in the morning of Tuesday 5th February.  Jeff had been suffering for approximately just over two years with ALS which is, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis in the USA and which in the UK is more widely known as Motor Neurone Disease.

Jeff was not only a great karateka and instructor but a wonderful friend who I stayed with and his family in his home in Urbana, Ohio many, many times.  I feel a huge hole has appeared in my personal life and I will miss him greatly and his wonderful sense of humour.  We had some fantastic times together and my love, condolences and best wishes go to his lovely wife, Lisa and to his son Bishop, who is also a 4th Dan with SSKI, and also to his daughter, Mary Rose and his other son AJ.

A sad, sad day.  RIP Jeff.

Malcolm Phipps

PHOTO: Sensei Jeff Sanders and Sensei Malcolm Phipps in happier times


SSKI's Winter Course

Wow! What a fabulous weekend course with Sensei Dave Hazard 7th Dan hosted by Sensei Malcolm Phipps 8th Dan and SSKI.  The dojo was packed on both days with karateka travelling from Morpeth, Cardiff, Isle of Wight, Surbiton, Dartford and many other places to train with this superb instructor. Saturday started off with a few kumite drills with the kyu grades working on double-handed blocks, whilst the seniors focussed more on blocking with the preparation hand, quick release attacks and correct body positioning.  The second and third sessions dealt with kata, Nijushiho and was truly an eye opener for everyone.

Sunday’s main theme was the kata, Bassai-dai and again another absolutely superb session working on the journey of each technique as opposed to the destination.  The final session of the course was a tough kicking session and again dealt mainly with the positioning of the support leg and foot.

Absolutely magnificent weekend’s karate training with a truly awe inspiring instructor.  Roll on the next SSKI course with Sensei Hazard on the weekend of 14/15th September, again at Hemel Hempstead School in our brand new gym/dojo.  Can’t wait!

Photo title: L to R: Sensei Mark Elliott, Sensei Dave Hazard and Sensei Malcolm Phipps.