Quick reminder: Tozando order

A quick thank you to those who have already responded to the call out for orders to be placed with Tozando, and a reminder for anyone yet to place an expression of interest to do so by Wednesday. 

If you want to add something to the order, could you please: 

  • Go to http://www.tozandoshop.com and copy the URL of the specific items you are interested in
  • Send an e-mail to enquiries@bbrd.org.au copying in the URLs of the items and any options you need to specify (eg. size). If uncertain, request some advice and I will take you through your most likely options

Once all orders are in, I will give you your final cost/balance for the orders, which then will need to be transferred to the Club bank account. I will then place the order Wednesday next week (1 May). 


Systema update

Hi all Dylan Green filling in for Michael Conroy, as he is recovering from a training injury sustained a couple of weeks ago. Systema has transitioned into the new timetable changes and will be training Monday night 6 pm - 7 pm and Saturday afternoon 3.30 pm - 4.30 pm. Systema has been really quiet with  absence from our usual regulars we have not had anyone attend for weeks now, so I would like to inform everyone that I will be taking over Systema instruction in Michael Conroys absence, and feel free to come and train.

Hope to see some bodies soon sincerely Dylan Green.     

Arnis update

Hi all, Arnis has been going well with the new timetable changes to Monday 5 pm - 6 pm, and Saturday afternoons from 4.30 pm to 5.30 pm. We have had Travis and Stuart as our regulars and have been missing Jack for a while and hope to see him soon. We have been working through the basics and trying to solidify a good foundation for potential grading around October-November, still waiting for Don and kurt for grading requirements as they have been busy with work commitments, to finalize and send them through so we can start checking off skills for grading. Thanks, sincerely Dylan Green.       

All quiet on the Western Front ...

Not much to report this week in the land of BBRD. Most everyone is back to school/uni this week, and I will be back to Bundaberg this Tuesday afternoon. It was great however to have a few more sessions down here in Toowoomba this week past.  

Just a couple of house keeping matters. First, can I please ask everyone to ensure that you bring adequate foot ware to the dojo so that you are not walking into the toilets bare foot and then training on the mats. While the will most likely be clean tonight give the pupil free day at HNCPS, we can be pretty certain that they will not stay that way.  

Secon, could you please ensure that you are getting to class sufficiently early so that you can assist with the set up and so that classes can run to time. With school back, we are back to setting up and packing away each night, and part of your responsibilities are to assist with that process. 

Have a great week everyone, and I will hope to catch you over the next few days at the Dojo! 

New training fee structure to commence 1 May

One of the important things ratified at the AGM was the new training fee structure for classes. Fees have been static for some years now, and we have been forced to reevaluate what we change for classes due to rising costs for both rental of the MEAC and other administrative costs. As a result, we have had to take the step to make a modest increase in our training charges.

From May 1 , casual training will be $10 per session, for every session that you attend. This means that if you are on a night with three session and you attend all three, the cost for that night is $30 (rather than $15 as it has previously been). 

Monthly fees will also be increasing. Full time students (regardless of institution) or those with a current concession card will be required to make a $75 contribution while general community members will be required to contribute $80 per month. This is still a significant discount from other similar activities, and you are able to earn “Dojo Dollars” to offset these costs. 

We will be tracking your payments via Martialytics, and next week we will be providing a comprehensive list of your options and instructions for making payments to the Club.  

Thanks in advance for making sure that you are on top of your obligations, and your discipline coordinators will be discussing details with you over the coming weeks.  

Meet your 2018 Executive

One result of the AGM held on Saturday was the election of the 2018 Executive. The positions filled are:

  • President — Michael Baczynski
  • Secretary — Eric Tavenner
  • Treasurer — Sian Carlyon
  • General Member — Brady Albrand

The Club’s committee is also made up of appointed discipline coordinators, who may be doubling up with other roles. The current list is: 

  • Arnis — Dylan Green
  • Fencing — Jamie Webb and Michael Stockwell
  • Fire & Flow — Jesse Gough
  • Iaido — Tracy Campbell
  • Jujutsu, FlexiFit, Go, & Ken Jin Kan — Michael Baczynski
  • Kendo — Minty Ma
  • SMR Jodo and PunchFit — Eric Tavenner
  • Systema — Michael Conroy
  • Taiko — Tomoko Sneath and Michelle Wiersma

Discipline coordinators are your “go to” for any questions regarding your training or associated matters. We will be updating the contact details on the Club’s website over the next week. 

President’s report

Given that we have just had our Annual General Meeting, I though that is would be worthwhile to put the President’s report out through the Budo Blog so that members who were not able to attend on Saturday could have access to it. Having been returned to the position of President at that meeting I will also provide some comments on where I would like for our Club to be in twelve months hence.  

2017 has been another successful if at times challenging year for the Club. There are several very positive headlines to remember in the year that was, especially in terms of membership, composition and community engagement.  

To start, I would like to note the inclusion of Taiko and Olympic Fencing to the group of disciplines and activities that the Club supports. Both have been a tremendous input of activity and membership for the Club, and have opened a number of avenues for greater community engagement. In particular, the Taiko group has seen the building of links with both the Toowoomba Regional Council and the community from Toowoomba’s Japanese sister city of Takatsuki. With the dedicated efforts from Tomoko Sneath, Michelle Wiersma, and Sian Carlyon, the numbers of practitioners have grown over the year and we have been the beneficiaries of a very generous donation of taiko drums from the Takatsuki community. And while the inclusion of Fencing has come late in the Club’s year, I am very pleased to note how well they have integrated with the Club and look forward to Jamie Webb and Michael Stockwell building on that in the coming year. 

Furthermore, the Club has continued its tradition of active community participation and engagement, where  we have continued to support events such as USQ Market Days, especially around Orientation Weeks, The Toowoomba Languages and Cultures Festival, USQ Harmony Day celebrations, and special public events such as the Jodo public demonstration provided by Glen Henry sensei, and the Kendo “Have a Go” day hosted at the end of February this year. Such events require significant support from members, not the least fronting up and demonstrating what we love doing to a broad audience, but to all of the organisation, packing, transporting and setting up necessary for these events.

Additionally, Club members have had significant amounts of success in their progress through the arts, especially at gradings. In particular, Matt G deserves special mention for not only successfully grading to ikkyu in both Kendo and Iaido, but also backing that up only days later with a successful grading to gokkyu in Jujutsu. This has set both him personally and Club up well for future expansion, which I will outline shortly. In addition, the Club successfully hosted Queensland’s very first successful regional Kyu grading, providing an opportunity for long-time kendo practitioners Sian Carlyon and Sean Thompson to kick start their grading progress after a very long time from when they last tested. 

Seminars both hosted and attended this past year added important outside vision to what we do here in Toowoomba. As a small community of practitioners, it is critical that everyone has the opportunity to gain insight from interacting with other martial artists and especially other instructors. In particular, I would like to thank Tom Johnson, sensei, for his very generous frequent visits to help progress iaido in Toowoomba, Glen Henry, sensei, for his mentoring of Eric in SMR Jodo, John Isaacs, sensei for his generosity in letting Toowoomba-based kendoka train at the Kenshinkai in Brisbane, Kurt Graham sensei and Andrew Seyderhelm for their seminars at Easter last year, Jason Griffiths sensei and Don Ouellette sensei for their support throughout the year including sitting on grading panels and with Arnis, and to Peter Hills sensei for organising another enjoyable IBF training day at the end of August. We also participated at the Australian University Games, primarily in a support role for Kendo, though Jack Baker did have a valiant tilt at the Judo competition. We will look to build on this in 2018, as the Games will be held on the Gold Coast again this year. 

It has been really pleasing to see the return to practice of long-absent friends this year, especially to Kendo. We have also seen new faces turn into indispensable members of the Club across a number of disciplines. This has resulted in a significant spreading of the administrative, teaching and organisational load over this year, something I am personally grateful of. This year has also seen the start of a sister dojo based in Gin Gin, and the possibility of BBRD North Queensland firing up in the next few months. 

And finally to some vision of the year ahead. As many of you will know, at the start of this year I accepted a place to study Physiotherapy at CQ University Bundaberg. The course is a full time load of four years, the next two and a half of which will see me travelling weekly to Bundaberg and staying there for at least half of the week while semester is on. While anticipating that I can juggle my range of responsibilities for this year, it is unlikely that I will be able to do justice to the position of President next year when the load for my studies intensifies. As a result, I announced my intention at the AGM to see out this tenth year of the Club as President and look to hand over that responsibility next year. This will allow me to continue to provide guidance and input for the disciplines that I am instructing while being able to take a step back from the vital administrative and promotional work that keeps the Club ticking over. 

Given that the 10th birthday for the Club is in November, I believe that it is an excellent time to organise a transition of the reigns so as to create some renewal for hopefully the next ten years of the Club. There are some significant things I would like for us to achieve in this year coming. First is to place us in a position this year to become an incorporated association. As a not-for-profit incorporated association, we will be able to access a wider range of funding and grant opportunities, and better meet the needs of our membership. Second, we will be looking to support the growing diaspora of BBRD members to set up satellite dojo, especially in the Bundaberg region (Ken Jin Kan) and Tully/Mission Beach/Townsville (the proposed BBRD NQ). Third, we will also continue to look for a location for a possible full time facility that can meet the needs of all the Club’s disciplines under one roof. And we will also look to continue our tradition of public engagement through special courses, open days, seminars, and public demonstrations.  

So onwards and upwards for 2018, and as always, I will look forward to seeing you and training with you at the dojo

Training this fortnight

I hope that everyone has been able to enjoy at least a little time off over the Easter long weekend, and that you are feeling refreshed for the week ahead.  

As per convention, we will not be training tonight (Monday 2 April) due to the public holiday, and Michael S has let me know that Fencing will be taking a break this Tuesday night as both he and Jamie are unavailable, and then back again as usual next week.  

As it is school holidays, the training mats can be left down on Wednesday night (till Thursday next week). Can I ask that the jujutsu-ka setting up Wednesday please ensure that the surface is set up inside the western one third border of the MEAC’s markings so that we have sufficient space for other session over this fortnight. 

For Gin Giners, we are taking a break from Kendo for the next two weeks of the school holidays. However, I will be running an Iaido class 4.30 – 6.00 pm this week.

Next week, I have a respite from having to drive to Bundaberg, so will be in the Toowoomba dojo for all of the regular classes. So as always, I’ll look forward to seeing you in the dojo! 

Annual General Meeting, 7 April, 1 pm

Hello everybody,

Just a reminder that the annual general meeting (AGM) is on Saturday 7 April at 1 pm at the MEAC.  This is the meeting where you are involved in the future direction of the club.

Please ensure that you are up to date on your club membership and have your yearly fees paid prior to the AGM.  I recently sent out an e-mail with the membership form attached, so please utilise that to figure out how much your yearly dues are.  If you have any questions about your fee structure please ask you discipline coordinator/instructor for assistance.

Hope to see everybody at the AGM.