The 6th Annual Toronto Modern Arnis Camp took place this past weekend and it was a rousing success!

The weekend started off with a bang. In a change from previous Toronto Modern Arnis camps, private lessons with Masters of Tapi Tapi Chuck Gauss and Ken Smith were made available. Several folks signed up either for an individual lesson or a group lesson. The private lessons took place in my basement as well as in the garage. During all of this, my lovely wife, Mary-Anne entertained several guests in the living room.

Master Chuck teaching a private
Master Chuck showing the subtleties of tapi tapi to a student.
Master Ken Teaching Private Lesson
Master Ken makes a point while Doug looks on.

The feedback on the private lessons was quite positive and the participants reported that they got a lot out of the sessions.

Then it was off to the Harmony Martial Arts Center for the formal beginning of this annual Modern Arnis Camp. An impressive group of participants gathered at this beautiful dojo. They came from Detroit, Ottawa, Oshawa, Ajax, Pickering, and Scarborough. After introductions, Master Ken kicked things off with a session focusing on the parry back fist concept. Things were rocking and rolling after that.

While I was getting lunch for Masters Ken and Chuck as well as picking up the Filipino Food at Remely’s, Master Chuck continued to teach the concept introduced by Master Ken. In the context of tapi tapi, Master Chuck imparted the concept of using the parry back fist with the check hand off the tapi tapi block. The stick hand punch off the tapi tapi block was taught as well. He also added in a third technique which consisted of a bottom feed punch. 

The material was similar to what I covered in this video waaaaaaay back. 🙂 And in this clip as well.

Then it was dinner time! Filipino food!

Lechon with Apple in its Mouth
Yum! This was a great lechon. Many enjoyed it!

Also included in the dinner was steamed rice, chicken adobo, pancit and chicken alfredo (thanks to Joe Apostol for this!). I spotted several participants going through 2nd and 3rd helpings. Some staggered onto the floor to resume training. 🙂

Masters Chuck and Ken picked up where they left off, emphasizing tapi tapi in the evening session and teaching how to connect the various concepts covered at the camp.

Master Chuck Teaching Tapi Tapi.
Master Chuck instructing the finer points of tapi tapi.

The camp resumed the next afternoon.

Master Ken taught the first session and covered left vs. right tapi tapi, emphasizing good solid fundamentals. He focused on the left hand cross body bait and covered every detail of this technique. 

Master Ken teaching left hand tapi tapi
Master Ken Covers the Left Hand Cross Body Bait.

Master Chuck then followed up teaching left vs. right tapi tapi as well. He continued the parry back fist concept of the previous day. He showed that you can do the parry back fist off the #1 as well as the #2 side.

Master Chuck Palm Strike
Master Chuck showing how to use the check hand in left vs. right tapi tapi.

In the last part of the camp, Master Chuck and Master Ken covered the joint locks of Modern Arnis. This certainly woke up the participants. How can you be sleepy after enduring some painful joint locks? 🙂 But we are talking about crazy folks here, ladies and gentlemen.

In summary, a wide range of material was covered at the camp, enough so that I spotted some cross eyed folks as they were leaving the Harmony Martial Arts Center. I will certainly be reviewing some of the material from the camp in future Bamboo Spirit classes.

I would like to thank the participants for taking time from their families to train for a weekend and expanding their knowledge of Modern Arnis. I would also like to thank Renshi Raymond Ata of the Harmony Martial Arts Center for hosting the event. In addition, Guro Terry was a great help during the camp. 

I would also like to thank Master Chuck and Master Ken for sharing their considerable knowledge with us. They are phenomenal teachers. If you have the opportunity to attend a seminar or camp with either or both of them, do it!

Lastly, I’d like to thank my lovely wife for her support. Bamboo Spirit would not exist without her unbelievable support!

Over to the participants of this camp, do you have any memories to share with us? Let’s hear them!

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3 thoughts on “6th Annual Toronto Modern Arnis Camp

  • September 16, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    That piggy sure looks tasty. Glad you had a great time! It’s wonderful to come back with new material for the school, isn’t it?

    • September 16, 2015 at 11:09 pm

      Hi Joelle, absolutely! It was a lot of fun and we all learned new stuff. It was an awesome time. Now I have a few pounds to lose from all that eating. 🙂

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