April Member Highlight

April Member Highlight

Our April member highlight features Erik, a dedicated student, teacher, grappler, and runner. Erik embodies the principles of judo through his teaching and his learning. He is a strong addition to the Kano MA team.


I began training at Kano Martial Arts the very first day the doors opened. Upon arriving I was greeted and embraced by Sensei Garry and from that moment I knew Kano was to become my permanent home. I had been training Judo for over a year and training Jiu Jiu Jitsu for about five years. When I heard that Sensei Garry and Sensei Shintaro were opening an academy I knew this was the opportunity for me to really sharpen my learning. The experience has impacted my approach to the martial arts tremendously, not only has it refined my Judo but my Jiu Jitsu as well. There is a misconception that Judo only emphasizes Tachi waza and Nage waza (standing and throwing techniques) but at Kano there is an emphasis to train heavily on Newaza (ground techniques) as well.


As an educator in the public schools I know the importance of the teacher to student relationship. This relationship is vital to student’s learning and can determine the success of a student’s ability. The rapport between teacher and student at Kano is a visible component of the culture of the school. As a member, there is deep connection that has developed largely in part of my instructors and their approach at developing the highest level of instruction suitable for anyone. On any given day new faces appear on the mat varying from no experience to those who perform at the highest level of Judo. As a new academy it has attracted many Judoka’s but it has also brought in many practitioners of Jiu Jitsu. 


This year I was fortunate enough to begin an after school Jiu Jitsu Youth program at my high school where I teach. It’s been one of the most rewarding accolade that I could possible add to merit of achievements as an educator. The impact of being a student at Kano has definitely influenced my approach to developing my curriculum and instruction with my students. I mentioned how training at Kano has refined my skill level as a practitioner but it has also helped me to become a better teacher in every facet of teaching.

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