December 2011 Youth Class - Beginners


27 Aug 11 Junior Brown Belt and Adult Brown Belt Testing

CHARLES WATERMAN (promoted to Blue Belt), AUGUSTUS ANDERSON (Promoted to 3rd Brown), Dana Cowell 2nd Dan, Courtney Cowell (Jr Black Belt), Ducote Sensei (Center), Sarah Wright (Promoted to 3rd Brown Junior Grade), Daniel Speirs (2nd Dan), ZACHARY BURGE (Promoted to 3rd Brown)

AUGUSTUS ANDERSON and ZACHARY BURGE with Promotion Menjos (Certificates)

Sarah Wright holding her well-earned Menjo, she is only 10 years old and a superb student!

Ducote Sensei and Speirs Sensei visit Soke Karl W Marx on his 75th birthday

Ducote Sensei (8th dan), Soke Karl W Marx (10th Dan), Daniel Spiers (2nd Dan)

Karl W Marx was Ducote Sensei's first teacher starting in 1974. This is a great photo of several generations of lineage dating back to Keichu Ryu in the mid-1970s. Ducote Sensei was promoted to 6th Dan by Soke Marx in 1993. Speirs Sensei was promoted to 2nd Dan by Ducote Sensei in 2010.

Speirs Sensei during a groundwork seminar

These pictures were taken at the Murrieta, California dojo, celebrating Soke Marx 75th birthday

26 Mar 11 Junior Black Belt and Adult Testing

Our first Junior Black Belts

Seven were promoted and the average training time was 2.5 years for them to achieve this ranking. newly promoted Junior Black Belts - (left to right front), Kaleb McDade, John M Ashworth, Tyler Fritzenschaft, Sydney Fritzenschaft, Courtney Cowell, Adam Brown, John Nelson. Rear row, Jason Halsteadt Sensei, 1D Dana Cowell Sensei 2D, Gary Ducote Kyoshi 8D,  Daniel Speirs Sensei 2D, Birgit Moore Sensei 1D.

Four Adults Promoted to Shodan

Left to right - Lacie Greer Sensei 1D, Birgit Moore Sensei 1D, Dana Cowell Sensei 2D, Gary Ducote Kyoshi 8D, Daniel Speirs Sensei 2D, far right Efrain Padilla Sensei 1D.

Stephanie Ducote


Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Kai Meritorious Service Award

Awarded due to her outstanding contributions to the art, the dojo and service to the students and teachers of the Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Kai over a 3 year period. She has been an superb asset to all in the organization and the first person to be awarded this honor by the Kai.

18 Jan 11 Class Pictures


Left - 5-7 yr olds, Middle 8-12 yr olds, Right Side Adult Class (partial)

16 Jan 11 Testing and Promotions

Dana Cowell promoted to 2nd Degree Black Belt (Nidan) far left, Tom Brocksmith promoted to 3rd Degree Black Belt (Sandan), Daniel Speirs promoted to 2nd Degree Black Belt (Nidan)




1 JAN 11 Annual Hombu Dojo O-Soji (dojo cleaning and repair)

Members conducted an "annual cleaning" of their family dojo and participated in a New Year's Day training session. Not all dojo members attended due to other commitments, but the gathering was a lot of fun for all

Jason Halstead Sempai, Dana Cowell Sensei, Gary Ducote Kaiso, Daniel Speirs Sensei, Birgit Moore Sempai,

Cleaning and Oiling Bokken and Jo

Speirs Sensei using the dojo "insta-ladder" to clean our flag. He seemed to take his time up there...

All students and teachers cleaning the tatami, a good practice in humility for all

This year's first class and annual cleaning attendees. A great way to start our new year. The dojo was spot repainted and re-stained, mats cleaned and a short training session conducted.

The Hombu dojo is ready for the new year - 2011.


Adult Class

5-7 Year Old Class

This was the last class of the year prior to our New Years Class/Demonstrations on 1 Jan 11

Many were not in attendance due to holidays

Scudeiri Hanshi visits Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Hombu Dojo teaching San Sai Ryu Kenjutsu

Daniel Speirs Sensei received personal instruction from Scudeiri Hanshi

Scudieri Hanshi instructed basic concepts of swordsmanship, drills and beginning and advanced concepts of swordsmanship to all.

Photo shoot of Aikido Waza - over 850 pictures taken in this series for Volume I - Youth and Adult

Volume II will cover Nihon Goshin Jutsu


Showing a technique sequence from a basic off balance entry

Cowell Sensei and Speirs Sensei show excellent zanshin during kata

Sempai Birgit showing basic position for rear attack with some spinal compression

Kimball Sensei shows a elbow lock

Speirs Sensei shows superb zanshin at end of his shihonage

Note the right foot on ground until the absolute last second - that is commitment!


Good illustration of a hiji waza ending

Sensei Kimball in intermediate stage of Shihonage

Speirs Sensei in last second of sustemi fall, note foot contact body fully committed to fall

Ending position with good zanshin

Mae Otoshi rollout

Ending position of that technique preserving the focus

Preparing to do the walking movements

First book on Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Published

Title: Seeing The Whole Elephant

Back Front

ID: 9205836 Category: Self-Improvement Description: Philosophy, Theories and Core Principles of the Art

Extract:  "I do know the “elephant” exists, I have seen its many parts, sometimes the whole of its being, but in only glimpses, as it runs through the “jungle” of my body, mind and spirit. The first step into the dojo places the new practitioner of Budo (the warrior way) in a new environment. The Sensei and the dojo collectively take on each new student and begin a long process – teaching the student to see their own part of the “elephant”. If the student continues the journey, over time, they will see the elephant in its entirety, piece by piece."


Publisher: Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Kai Copyright Year: © 2010

Language: English

26 JUN 10

Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Kai summer instructor development seminar

promotion of shisei ryu aikibudo's 1st 6th dan

Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Kai, now operational under its standing rules with four operational dojo.

  (Right to Left) -- Julie Short, promoted to 3rd Dan, Mike Kimball promoted to 3rd Dan, Darel Chase, Kyoshi - ICAJF President), Gary W Ducote, Kyoshi - Kaiso, Jeffery Lane promoted to 6th Dan, Shihan, Dana Cowell 1st Dan, Daniel Speirs 1st Dan, Scott Doerr promoted to 1st Dan, far right


Kimball Sensei (standing) and Lane Renshi practice handgun self defense techniques.

Doerr Sensei promoted to Shodan

Ducote Sensei demonstrating and discussing handgun control techniques

Jr Brown students Kaleb McDade, Sydney Fritzenschaft demonstrate an aikibudo entry technique with Jr Brown Courtney Cowell watching

Jr Brown Belt students Tyler Fritzenschaft and Cameron Kimball demonstrate ground work entry


This is the final day "list of jewels" one from each person.....

One of the main jewels emerged from the "blind men discovering the elephant" - a story about how we all view things differently while experiencing the same thing (or at least the part we understand and experience). While none are able to see the whole thing, only our part, and the Sensei leads you to see the "whole elephant".


6 JUN 10 - Daniel Speirs tested and demonstrated for Shodan, 1st degree black belt in a test that required demonstration of kata, sword fighting, karate-do kata and kumite. The demonstration included participation by five dojo Yudansha and the Shisei Ryu Aikibudo Kaiso. Testing/demonstration was administered at the Louisiana Hombu Dojo.

Mike Kimball, Gary Ducote, Daniel Speirs and Dana Cowell Sensei's after the testing for Daniel Speirs


Daniel Speirs - 1st Dan and Ducote Sensei - 8th Dan

Participating Black Belts - Louis Halstadt, Mike Kimball, Gary Ducote, Daniel Speirs, Dana Cowell, Jason Halstadt, Isabelle Halstadt.


16 May 10 Jr 2nd Brown Testing

The dojo conducted a special held, promotion test/demonstration for eight of its junior students who ranged in age, from 9 through 12 years old. Most of these students have been training for over a year and a half to almost two years to obtain this ranking.

Jr Blue Belt Sydney Hamm (far left), and newly promoted Junior Brown Belts - (left to right lower), Kaleb McDade, Adam Brown (Jr 3rd Brown), John M Ashworth, Sydney Fritzenschaft, John Nelson, Courtney Cowell, Tyler Fritzenschaft, Cameron Kimball.  Rear row, Mike Kimball Sensei, Gary Ducote Kyoshi, Dana Cowell Sensei, Daniel Speirs Sempai, Birgit Moore Sempai .

Students performing Shoulder Lock, awaiting instructions

Students beginning Judo techniques

Attended Williams Ichiban Dojo, Shorin Ryu Karate Do - Shodan testing - 6 Mar 10

I attended a testing for five students for Shodan, one was a 12 yr old testing for Jr Shodan

Presenting my friend in Budo, Mark Williams Sensei, a certificate of recognition

Junior 3rd Brown Belt Testing - 12 Jan 10

The dojo conducted a promotion test/demonstration for seven of its junior students who ranged in age, from 8 through 12 years old. Most of these students have been training for over a year and a half to obtain this ranking.

Youth Class - 12 Jan 10

Newly promoted Junior Brown Belts - (left to right lower), Courtney Cowell, Cameron Kimball, John M Ashworth, Sydney Fritzenschaft, Tyler Fritzenschaft, John Nelson, Kaleb McDade. Rear row, Sensei Mike Kimball, Kyoshi Gary Ducote, Sensei Dana Cowell, Sempai Daniel Speirs.

Dojo Yudansha - Mike Kimball-Sensei, Gary Ducote-Kyoshi, Dana Cowell-Sensei

1 JAN 10 Annual Hombu Dojo O-Soji (dojo cleaning and repair)

Members conducted an "annual cleaning" of their family dojo and participated in a New Year's Day training session. Not all dojo members attended due to other commitments, but the gathering was a lot of fun for all

Students and Sensei

Cleaning the Mats


Children seem to be anxious to clean


Sensei's Kimball, Ducote and Cowell


Cleaning and oiling dojo weapons

28 DEC 09 - 36th Shodan Promoted

Mrs. Dana Cowell

Mike Kimball Sensei , Dana Cowell Sensei , Ducote Sensei (L to R)

Cowell Sensei executing a fall during kata - superb form caught in motion

Cowell Sensei after receiving her Shodan

(L to R) Kimball Sensei (2Dan), Cowell Sensei (1Dan), Ducote Sensei (7Dan)

Beauregard Daily News Picture

Ducote Sensei and Kenck Sensei - before his departure to Washington State.....

Brandon Lewing earns his Peewee Orange Belt (center).


Left to right, back row: Sensei Mike Kimball, Kyoshi Gary Ducote  - Dojo/Kaicho, Sempai Dana Cowell, Sempai Daniel Spiers  - front row, Cameron Kimball, Courtney Cowell, Tyler Fritzenschaft, John M. Ashworth, John Nelson, Kaleb McDade, Sydney Fritzenschaft. The students testing for Junior Purple have been training over 14 months. Each of the students presented their required techniques in a truly professional manner. The dojo is very proud of this accomplishment for our Junior students.

Ducote Sensei 52nd birthday party

Youth Blue Belt Testing - 2 July 09

Left to right, back row: Student Efrain Padilla, Sensei Mike Kimball, Kyoshi Gary Ducote  - Dojo/Kaicho, Sempai Chris Kenck, Sempai Dana Cowell, Sempai Katy Ducote  - front row, John Nelson, Coy Bailey, John Ashworth, Cash Bailey, Cameron Kimball, Tyler FritzensChaft, Courtney Cowell. This testing was very demanding, and it is the culmination of about one year of training for some students! A great effort on the part of students and instructors alike.

Youth Yellow and Green Belt testing - 9 August 09

Left to right, back row: Student Gilbert Fernandez, Sempai Daniel Speirs, Kyoshi Gary Ducote  - Dojo/Kaicho, Sensei Mike Kimball  - front row, Sydni Striedel, Kenji Pearman, Nathaniel Pearman, Darrell Spencer, Matthew Mudd, Nathaniel Mudd, Adam Brown. These students practiced very hard for this test and performed superbly.

Peewee Testing - 2 Jul 09

Miranda Haugen - Peewee Green and Austin Gibbings - Peewee Blue. This class is assisted by Daniel Speirs, left of Ducote Sensei.

8 April 2009

Testing for Sensei Mike Kimball - Nidan, 2nd Degree Black (left) and Sensei Chris Kenck - Shodan, 1st Degree Black (right). Outstanding performance and demonstration of knowledge.

Christopher Kenck - lst Shodan promoted at Shisei Dojo

35th Black Belt promoted by Ducote Sensei

Rear Attack - Sensei Kimball on the way down


Zanshin and focus as Uke falls during kata


Nice Ukemi from wrist technique during Shodan/Nidan testing


Great Shomen Ate - frontal strike during testing!






Youth Green Belt Testing - 22 Mar 09

Left to right, back row: Sempai Chad Myers, Sempai Katy Ducote, Kyoshi Gary Ducote  - Dojo/Kaicho, Sempai Chris Kenck, Sempai Dana Cowell - front row, Tyler Fritzenshaft, Coy Bailey, John Ashworth, John Nelson, Cash Bailey, Courtney Cowell and Mallorie Leidig. This was a very good testing and all students did very well. The result of 8 months of training.


Student Places 2nd in Social Studies Fair

Collin, pictured above, placed 2nd in his local Elementary School Social Studies Fair. He did his project on the "Origins of the Martial Arts Belt Ranking System". He covered a subject that many black belts do not know about. As you can so, he did a great job. The School is very proud of this student who is also on the Honor Roll.


Two of our teen students in the adult class, tested and passed their 3rd degree Brown Belt (Sankyu) level formal testing. They did this at 8+ out of 10 scoring and met our adult criteria with no problem. We are all very proud of Katy Ducote and Chad Myers!





1 JAN 09 Annual Hombu Dojo O-Soji (dojo cleaning and repair)

Members conducted an "annual cleaning" of their family dojo and participated in a New Year's Day training session.

1 JAN 09 Annual Hombu Dojo O-Soji (dojo cleaning and repair)


Shisei Dojo rank testing 16 Dec 08

Youth class members promoted to Junior Yellow Belt and Junior Orange Belt

Left to right, sitting, then standing: Ducote Sensei, Dana Cowell (Assistant Instructor, Sankyu), standing - Caleb McDade, Alex Steele, Darion Carter, Coy Bailey, John Ashworth, John Nelson, Cash Bailey, Tyler Fritzenshaft, Cameron Kimball, Courtney Cowell, Mallorie Leidig.

Peewee Class Promotion

Left to right - Erica Vallery, Miranda Haugen, Ducote Sensei (center), Austin Gibbing (Peewee Orange), Andrew Brott (Peewee Yellow)


Dojo Dedication Ceremony 1Nov 08

Attending -- Mayor Ron Roberts (Deridder) and wife, Joe Sicliano (City Council), Rev Tony Glisson and wife Bobbie Glisson (my mother), Miss Deridder, my wife Stephanie and daughter Katy, also attending students and parents.


Mayor Ron Roberts and Ducote Sensei presenting rank certificates to students

Deridder Paper - Short Article on Dojo

Shisei Dojo rank testing held at Westside Gymnastics 5 Oct 08

Youth class members promoted to Junior Yellow Belt

Left to right upper then lower: Shihan Ducote, John Ashworth, Coy Bailey, John Nelson, Tyler Fritzenshaft, Cameron Kimball, Katy Ducote (Leadership Team), Cash Bailey, Austin Gibbing, Courtney Cowell, Mallorie Leidig, Dana Cowell (Leadership Team).

Ducote Sensei gives Gilliland Sensei (6th Dan Keichu Ryu) Karl Marx's original Black Belt 14 Jun 08

Newest Black Belt

Michael Kimball - Major, US Army - Shodan Shisei Ryu Aikibudo - 14 Jun 08


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