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Mike Johnson, sempai

To all our Budoka:

as most or possibly all of you have heard by now, Mike Johnson was killed in the line of duty as a San Jose Police Officer, Tuesday evening, March 24th. He was known to all of you a Johnson sempai, or just Sempai. Though he has been on sabbatical leave, he had the opportunity to teach many of you still training today, from the children’s class, to the Teenager’s class, through the adults’ class.

Mike started with PJJA at the age of 17. He was a tall, thin and wobbly teenager. He had started with two other high school friends. A few years later he left stronger and more confident, but returned after 4-5 years, having graduated from the SJPD as a Police Officer. He trained with dedication and an attendance record (and punctuality) that is likely to be THE best to date. In 2008, after many years of training and after passing a typically gruesome black belt exam spanning over more than a week, he earned his Shodan (First Degree rank) Black Belt. That day he became a Sempai, and he went on to teach various weekly classes as well as joining the Black Belt class.

Johnson sempai, Mike, will be remembered by all of us in our own special way. For me, I know all too well the passion he had for teaching, Bokkendo and restraining techniques, which he loved learning as he knew would be invaluable during law enforcement arrests. But, on our annual Black Belt retreats, when the Instructor Team headed to a cabin in the mountains for a 2-3 day weekend, he brought two special qualities: his unusually long arms at our traditional UNO game that we played from after a nice dinner until 3:00 am, and an absolutely delicious cheesecake that he learned to make from his grandmother (and he kept that recipe a secret as if it were CIA Intelligence Data). He protected our community and he gave his time to teach kids and adults what he loved.

Sempai will be missed, he was one of few to reach his level among us. I wish to extend on behalf of us all at PJJA the deepest condolences to his family; may he rest in peace and enjoy practicing in Judo Heaven along with all those who went before us, who also loved and taught THE arts.

Angelo Caruana
Sensei

MJ& Sensei after his Blk Blt ceremony

Knife Defense Seminar (May 12, 2012)

May 12th 2012 / 9:30am – 1:00pm

THIS SEMINAR IS OPEN TO PJJA STUDENTS AS WELL AS FRIENDS AND FAMILY MEMBERS OF PJJA STUDENTS.

NON PJJA STUDENTS WILL BE TAUGHT SEPARATELY AND IN A GROUP AT A LEVEL TO MATCH THEIR ABILITY.

(Must be age 13 and up to attend)

Schedule & Description

09:30 – 10:00: Proper stabbing & Slashing with a knife

10:00 – 11:00: Practical Self-Defense against various knife attacks. Includes: Strikes & Kicks, Joint-Locks, Throws & Take-downs as follow up to a variety of knife attacks

11:00 – 11:30: Lunch Break – Snacks & Juices are included

11:30 – 01:00: Combative scenarios with both participants holding a knife. This will give you the ability to use your own knife properly against an attacker with a knife. This session may also be used to review material from 10:00-11:00

PJJA believes that training must be as close to “real” as possible to be effective if/when needed in a real situation. We will be using aluminum blunt/dull knives and may also use wooden knives. The idea is for the knife to look and feel real but not be of any danger.

Non-student participants will be taught pretty much the same way and the same techniques as enrolled students with the exception of techniques where throws will be eliminated or modified for safety and ease of application.

Early Registration by Wed May 9th: $25 PJJA

Late Registration or Walk-ins: $35 PJJA (no exceptions)

2 or more immediate family members receive a $10 total discount

Early Registration includes 1 FREE 60-minute refresher session on a Wed night class 2-3 weeks after seminar

 

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