There are millions of martial arts fans worldwide, and millions more are excited by the styles they see in action movies. Discover the true nature of martial arts with a demonstration in Wayne City while helping out the Wayne City High School junior class.
The demonstration will be held at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 13, in the Wayne City High School gymnasium. The event will serve as a fund raiser for the junior class and as a prelude to "Karate for Beginners," a class to be offered by Rend Lake College’s Community Education Department. That class runs from 4-5 p.m. through eight consecutive Tuesdays beginning March 16 at Wayne City High School.
Sensei Lou Campbell, who is organizing the demonstration and will lead the subsequent karate class, currently teaches a Tai Chi class in Mt. Vernon and leads a martial arts camp on the Rend Lake College campus during the summer. She said she hopes to have a group of martial arts students come in from Chicago to participate in the demonstration.
Attendees can expect to see demonstrations of karate, tai chi and various weapons forms, as well as basic self-defense maneuvers. Weapons demonstrations on tap include the tonfa (a weapon much like a police officer’s nightstick), sai (a weapon used to capture and break swords, derived from an Okinawan farming tool), bo (wooden staff) and three-section staff.
According to Campbell, spectators will witness displays of traditional forms (kata -- a series of prearranged movements aimed at making students more proficient in their techniques), sparring and the Yang style of tai chi, which Campbell currently teaches for RLC.
Campbell, a third-degree black belt in karate, and her husband, Master Al Campbell, a seventh-degree black belt, will lead the demonstration. Admission is $2 for adults and $1 for students. The donations will be earmarked for the Wayne City High School junior class.
Campbell said she hopes the demonstration will interest spectators in the "Karate for Beginners" class. This eight-session course costs $24 and will provide students the opportunity to discover martial arts training while improving health and coordination. Students will practice basic calisthenics and stretches and experience beginning stances. Other techniques covered will include fundamental blocks, punches and falls that can be combined into self-defense movements. Students should wear loose-fitting clothes.
Campbell will lead another martial arts course, "Martial Arts for Beginners," from Monday, June 21, through Friday, June 25, as part of a series of youth camps on the Rend Lake College campus in Ina. This class costs $56 and will be held at Waugh Gymnasium. Students in grades one through three will attend from 9 a.m. to noon, and those in grades four through seven attend from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
This course covers many of the same topics and techniques as "Karate for Beginners." When students master the art of falling safely on mats, they will begin to execute basic throwing techniques. Students should wear loose clothing and participate in bare feet.
For more information on the demonstration, "Karate for Beginners" or "Martial Arts for Beginners," contact Dawn Gibson, Community Education Director, at (618) 437-5321, Ext. 1267, or toll-free (in-district only) at 1-800-369-5321, Ext. 1267.