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C&S Online
An Online Newsletter For The
C&S Self Defense Association
Fall 2002

Confidence. Fitness. Success.

Thoughts From The Board of Directors...

Grandmaster Paul B. Dusenbery


Alive & Kicking
Grandmaster Paul B. Dusenbery

The C&S Retreat
From August 1st through the 4th,  C&S held its first advanced retreat for brown and black belts in the Association. I would like to discuss what happened at the retreat as well as why I think that this event was so important. When I asked my disciples last fall to help me organize an Association-wide advance retreat it was greeted by great enthusiasm but we did not know what the response would be in the other legs of the Association. In January, I e-mailed a message to all C&S advanced students that I had addresses for asking if there was interest in such an event. In the e-mail I mentioned that "I would like to explore whether you would be interested in attending the first C&S Advanced Martial Arts Retreat. The retreat would be held up in the mountains at a place called Estes Park. It would be hosted and organized by the Tiger Line schools in Colorado. The retreat would be facilitated by the Sen. Black Belts in the Association. It would allow ALL advanced students (both brown & black belts) in C&S to come together to train & share ideas. I feel that such an event would be a powerful experience for everyone attending. No promotions would be given at the retreat. Its purpose is to learn new ways of doing old things, to learn new things, to network, and to recognize the important role advance students play in the Association."

The Retreat would have general discussion sessions and specific workshops on a variety of topics such as:

  • The Meaning of Kata
  • Teaching Theory
  • Knife & Club Practice
  • Getting the Most out of Meditation
  • The Point of Self-Defense
  • Leadership Training for Black Belts
  • Starting & Sustaining an Effective Dojo
  • The New Black Belt Curriculum

It was remarkable how close the final retreat was to the suggestions that I had in January except that we actually had a promotion more on that later. We also had to change the date of the retreat from late August to early August and from Estes Park to Winter Park because of facility conflicts. What made this retreat such a success was the organizing committee who helped with every phase of the planning. The members were: Yondans Thompson and Wilkewitz, Sandan Vinciguerra, Shodan Bennetts, and Shodan-hos Edwards and Fussman. I was relieved that I did not have to come up with the agenda. I was given the task to keep the money straight. Not the most glamorous job but certainly important. The first thing we did was to decide on the goals for the retreat. What were the outcomes we were shooting for? The goals are listed below:

  1. To bring all legs closer in the Association
    We need key advanced students from every leg to participate. We have never all had to opportunity to gather in one place and share our knowledge with one another.
  2. To bring to the forefront Key Senior Black Belts
    We have several gifted Black Belts with many years experience. Our Association needs to feature these people and let everyone see and hear them. This helps in securing the stability of our Association by highlighting the next generation. This is a major step in our future.
  3. Physical
    This weekend allows for a golden opportunity to focus on our Martial Skills. Too often we are all so busy in our lives that we are not able to train as much as we would like. So a good hard work out and clinics would bring us all back to our roots.
  4. Leadership
    To better understand the martial arts process and learn the role that leadership plays in this process.
  5. Fellowship
    More than ever our Association has to come together. The way to do this is by providing time for fellowship and down right good partying!! This develops friendships and communication, all which will benefit our Art.

Another important step in planning the retreat was financial support from the C&S Association that Grandmaster Rose so graciously gave to the project. Grandmaster also sent two important videotapes that were shown and discussed the first evening. Thank you Grandmaster. Master Landers and myself gave some preliminary remarks about not eating too much (just kidding). Yondan Wilkewitz facilitated the "Modern Warrior" discussion. Every morning of the retreat began with sanchin, meditation, and chi gung exercises. Some of the other sessions were Kali practice led by Yondan Larison, Joint Locks and Takedowns led by Yondan Wilkewitz, Grappling led by Yondan Thompson & Shodan Bennetts, Meditation led by Sandan Vinciguerra, Knife and Club led by Shodan-ho Van Sickle, Sparring led by Nidan Patterson & Shodan-ho Van Sickle, and Tegumi Flow Drills led by Yondan Bushue. As you can see, this was a retreat that covered many topics led by martial art experts.

A surprise awaited everyone at the closing on Sunday morning. Because of some remarkable changes that took place during the retreat, Ikkyu Chuck Fussman was promoted to Shodan-ho. Congratulations Shodan-ho Fussman! Some 20 hours of videotape were taken during the retreat as well as hundreds of photos. This will be a great resource for years to come. This was a remarkable experience for myself and for all Tiger Line students who contributed (especially the transportation team). I believe that our retreat goals were met. I believe that participants not only learned a lot of neat martial arts stuff but they learned that C&S has lots of human resources and expertise. One surprising thing for me was that I did not once drop everyone for push-ups. I must be getting old. If you participated in the Retreat and you have read this far, I want you to give me 20 push-ups. Now. Better late than never. If any participants would like to share their experiences, the C&S newsletter would be a great forum. As the hero's on Flight 93 said, "Let's Roll."

Grandmaster Paul B. Dusenbery, PhD holds a 7th Degree Black belt. He began his studies with Grandmaster Rose in 1972. Dr. Dusenbery is a space scientist, writer, lecturer, and is the Executive Director of the Space Science Institute in Boulder, CO. He oversees the Dusenbery Tiger leg of C&S. Grandmaster Dusenbery can be reached at dusenbery@spacescience.org.

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Master David R. Landers


The Dragon's Tail
Senior Master David R. Landers

Looking Ahead
As we advance in our quest   to understand the foundations of or art, we are frequently concerned with the acquisition, and the application of power. As most of us have read extensively of the skills and exploits of some of the martial arts' legendary practitioners, we often are awed by descriptions of their power. It is only human that we compare these accounts with our own skill and power levels, and wonder about how such super-human feats were accomplished. Some photographs of the later 19th and early 20th century Masters exist. Outside of Mas Oyama, most seem to be of normal size and musculature. How then, could these individuals have been possessed of such inordinate powers? Let us discuss one of the ways that Masters use to amplify their power beyond the simple application of muscular movement.

One thing I should point out first is that if you have not read Grandmaster Rose's work on power in the martial arts, you need not read further. Without the foundational grasp of power that he provides in his writing, this article will be useless, or even misleading. I am sure that you have some grasp of the position and the importance of the dan tien, or chi center below the navel. This is your center of gravity and the central focusing point of your chi, most practitioners know of it, but are completely ignorant of its use in fighting. As we grapple with someone it is normal to use the legs to assist with the push-pull of upright wrestling. While it is normal to use the legs, which are powerful, to assist us in manipulating our opponent, it is not the most powerful way to use the entire body against him. As we watch such an encounter, we see that the dan tien point rises and lowers erratically, it does not, however, move significantly in any other direction. In such struggle the defender is sometimes over, beyond, or behind this center, this means that his level of control over himself or the opponent is limited by his relative strength. Now rethink this strategy. Take the same two combatants, locked in the same struggle and have one, without releasing his grip on the opponent, suddenly drop his dan tien and then project it, by stepping, 45 degrees to the opponent's near shoulder. You should see the opponent fly wildly in the direction of the force of the dan tien's movement. To practice this kind of power movement, drop your center, by bending at the knee and then rapidly step forward. If you step in the normal way, you will elevate the dan tien and undo the effect on the opponent. You must learn to step forward, or back without raising the dan tien. It is sort of a duck walk but if you concentrate on not moving the center up and down, your body will soon teach you how to move effectively.

If you want to master this type of power movement, practice the drop and step, varying the direction, length, and number of steps so that you move fluidly. Once you have this skill mastered you can begin to teach yourself how to use the dan tien for power in blocks, strikes, and kicks. We may discuss that process in further articles.

Master David R. Landers holds a 6th Degree Black belt. He began his studies with Grandmaster Rose in 1969. He served as Deputy Chief of Police of Effingham, Illinois from 1997 to 2000 when he assumed the role of Illinois State Field Coordinator for the Midstates Organized Crime Information Center. He oversees the Landers Dragon leg of C&S. Master Landers can be reached at dragon@effingham.net.

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