Saturday, September 30, 2017

Arizona Karate Grandmaster Looks Back at Golden Anniversary


In 2014, Soke Hausel, Grandmaster of Shorin-Ryu Karate & Kobudo Seiyo Kai, celebrated 50 years of
 martial arts training. O'Sensei Bill Borea (right) presents plaque from the student body to Grandmaster Hausel 
in recognition of his 50 years of training. Soke Hausel has been inducted in more than a dozen Hall of Fames
 around the world and taught martial arts at four different universities.
Karate, Kobudo and other traditional martial arts have been part of Soke (Grandmaster) Hausel's life for more than 50 years! This love of traditional martial arts began in 1964 after the Beatles invaded the US. For those who are too young to remember the invasion - it had a profound effect on most teenagers.


On Sunday nights, families religiously watched the Ed Sullivan showIn those days, most only had three black and white channels, no play back, and yet it was more entertaining than cable or satellite TV today. According to Soke Hausel, "We had no idea who these four British musicians were or what they were about, but they changed many people over night". As Soke tells the story...

The Churchmen, Rock n' Roll Band, about 1964. Left to right -
Jan Hart, Steve Paulos, George Allen and Dan (Soke) Hausel
"When I attended school the next day, everyone was talking about the invasion. I wanted to be a musician - just like millions of other kids around the world. So, I took up the guitar. I purchased a Gibson Firebird - can you believe it, I just saw a similar guitar selling for $28,000 on ebay. I paid a little over $100 for mine! Later, three other guys (Steve Poulos, Jan Hart, and George Allen) found me and we formed a band called the 'Churchmen". We became very popular in Utah and started playing at concerts and parties every weekend but soon we realized having long hair had drawbacks - rednecks wanted to shave our heads and rough us up because we were different. Today, I have no problem with rednecks - some of my heroes are rednecks.

Luckily, right next to my former junior high school was a karate dojo - the Black Eagle Federation - so we all signed up for kyokusinkai karate and trained with Sensei Tom Anguay. That was my start in martial arts. More than 50 years later, I've trained in several martial arts. Many doors opened for me because of my affiliation with the University of Wyoming where I taught martial arts classes and clinics for more than 30 years, and because of my association with Juko Kai International. 

The Churchmen became a very popular band at
the Terrace Gardens in Salt Lake City for a few
years until the band broke up.
A few years later, the Churchmen broke up and I joined another band - the 12th Night, but it wasn't my kind of band. We played for university venues and in pubs, but I didn't like playing in night clubs. About that time, I started teaching guitar at the Music Center. But one day, I had enough and gave up my career as a professional musician and sold my Firebird for a few hundred dollars and started working as a tour guide and astronomy lecturer at the Hansen Planetarium. I had stars in my eyes.

Today, I train 5 to 6 days each week in martial arts (you've probably seen me at your gym in Gilbert, Mesa, or Chandler and teach 8 classes each week. When I was a professor of martial arts at the University of Wyoming, I taught a few thousand students karate, kobudo, jujutsu, samurai artsself-defense, martial arts history and women’s self-defense while developing a prestigious martial arts program at the University from 1977 to 2007. Previously, I had taught at the University of New Mexico and University of UtahWhen I moved to Arizona, I taught a few classes at Arizona State University in 2007 but then opened a martial arts school (or Hombu dojo) on the border of ChandlerGilbert and Mesa. And, I started teaching Zonies to break rocks with their hands, rather than a rock hammer.

Steve Paulos and Dan Hausel (Desert News photo)
More than 50 years ago, karate was different as were the instructors (sensei). In 1964, bullying was encouraged and karate training was brutal - but at least no one ever took a bullet even though guns were very common and often seen in many teenager's truck windows in the parking lot on campus. We even had a target range under the high school where members of ROTC trained with .22 caliber rifles. 

I elected to continue martial arts for the rest of my life. Traditional martial arts should be a lifelong commitment - not a fling, but it is rare to find anyone who can make that kind of commitment. 

Traditional karate provides opportunities to get in shape, meet others with like minds, make lifelong friends, and learn pragmatic self defense. Traditional martial arts are about earning everything. One major difference between traditional and sport martial arts was pointed out in the original Karate Kid movie. Remember Miyagi-Ryu Karate (traditional) and Cobra Kai Karate (sport)? Traditional karate is about courtesy, self-respect, and respect for others. Those who train in traditional karate practice it as if it is a weapon and we all learn self-confidence. Every single person I trained in traditional karate came out much more positive and self-confident. Those in sport karate train as if it is a sport or game. Personally, I have no problem with sport, but after 50 years I understand this significant difference that is unrecognized by the layman. There are some good sport karate schools and organizations, but this form of karate does not be focus on self-defense but rather on trophies, sparring, and periodically bullying - but there are both good and bad sport practitioners - just like we see in the NFL and in other sports. Unfortunately, there are a lot more sport karate schools and this has resulted in scam artists opening martial arts schools - many purchased diplomas or fabricated their own. In traditional karate, most everyone knows everyone else and everyone's instructors, so legitimacy is everything and it is very difficult for a politician - err I mean scam artist, to sneak into the system.  On Okinawa, the birth place of karate, nearly all karate schools are traditional.
Today, I teach karate classes and other martial arts to adults and families at the Arizona School of Traditional Karate (aka Arizona Hombu) on the border of Gilbert and Mesa. We have may students scattered worldwide: many are university professors, teachers, engineers, scientists, doctors, lawyers, social scientists, law enforcement agents, artists and some are common laborers. My son Eric, daughter Jessica and grandsons are all proficient in karate. It is my hope that you too will follow the karate path."









The 12th Night Rock n' Roll Band with Dan (Soke) in front center about 1970 (Photo courtesy of University of
 Utah)

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Best Karate & Kobudo Instructor In Phoenix, Arizona Valley

"Domo Arigato Gozaimasu Phoenix, Arizona" - Thank you Phoenix!

There are many great martial arts instructors in the Phoenix Valley; thus it is an honor to be considered as the best in the valley based on 'expertise'. In 2017, Soke Hausel, headmaster of the Arizona Hombu Dojo in Mesa, world head (grandmaster) of Shorin-Ryu Karate & Kobudo (Seiyo Kai) and Juko Kai International Shihan (master instructor) was selected as best in the category of Expertise.

Soke Hausel has been teaching martial arts for nearly 5 decades and began his martial arts training in 1964 after growing long hair and joining a garage rock n' roll band. Because of the lack of tolerance for long hair in 1964, all four members of the band signed up for Japanese (kyokushin kai) karate for self-defense. Over the years he trained in Wado-Ryu, International Kenpo Karate KaiShotokan, Shorin-Ryu Karate & Kobudo and Kempojutsu as well as other traditional martial arts including a variety of kobudo (weapons) arts and samurai arts. He certified in many martial arts including Juko Ryu bujutsu, Juko Ryu Kijutsu, and Bujinkan Ninpo Budo (ninjutsu) and has been an active member of Juko Kai International since 1993 and the Zen Kokusai Soke Budo Bugei Renmei since 1999. Soke Hausel also has Shihan (5th dan), Sensei (3rd dan) and Senpai (1st dan) black belt certifications along with Soke (12th dan and 10th dan) black belt ranks. 

In 2017, Soke Hausel was elected to Who's Who in Martial Arts and selected for the Albert Nelson Marquis Who's Who Lifetime Achievement Award. His dojo (martial arts center) was also selected for the 2017 Mesa, Arizona Small Business and Excellence Award as well as for the past four years.

Grandmaster Hausel is a distinguished polymath and received national and international awards not only in martial arts but also in geological sciences, art, writing and public speaking

Through the years, Soke Hausel has taught hundreds of students, faculty and staff members self-defense and traditional karate. While at the University of Wyoming for 30 years, he developed one of the more diverse traditional martial arts programs as Kyoju no Budo (professor of martial arts). He has taught self-defense to many different adult groups including Christian, LDS, boy scouts, girl scouts, military, professional, librarians, women's clubs, martial arts groups and more. He loves teaching martial arts and enjoys the people he works with.

Soke Hausel gives credit to Dai-Soke Sacharnoski who has been his personal instructor and mentor since 1993 for his abilities in martial arts. Hausel state's that "Dai-Soke Sacharnoski is the best martial artist I have ever seen and has provided me with a great model and path to follow".

Hausel says he is also grateful "God has blessed me with all of his accomplishments as a person and polymath". In his early life, Hausel had more or less been thought by some (including his high school counsellor) to have been the least likely to succeed.

Today, Soke Hausel teaches a variety of traditional martial arts to adults and families at the Arizona Hombu dojo in the 60 W Baseline Center in Mesa. All are welcome to visit the dojo and watch classes.


























Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Arizona Hombu Selected As Best of Mesa, Arizona

The Arizona Hombu Dojo was selected as the Best of Mesa two years in a row by Best Businesses. This is the 4th year that the dojo (martial arts school in Mesa) has been selected as a top martial arts school. The dojo was selected by the Mesa Awards Program for the years 2015, 2014, 2013.

The Arizona Hombu dojo cirriculum  includes  Okinawan and Japanese traditional martial arts.  The grandmaster at the Arizona Hombu is a member of Juko Kai International, Zen Kokusai Soke Budo Bugei Renmei, Seiyo No Shorin-Ryu Karate Kobudo Kai and the US Soke Council.

Those who train at the Arizona Hombu have the opportunity to learn about martial arts history, philosophy, traditional Shorin-Ryu Karate and Kobudo, personal self defense and samurai arts. The Hombu dojo is a traditional martial arts school and does not participate in competition and includes a group of active yudansha (black belt) instructors with a great group of students!

The classes at the Arizona Hombu dojo are limited in size and focus on adults. Even so, families are invited to join the Shorin-Ryu classes. In today's society, fathers and mothers are highly recommended to take these classes with their daughters and sons. Learning karate gives them an important edge in life.

The Arizona Hombu also participates in events for its members such as karate demonstrations, clinics at the Arizona Hombu as well as at the Juko Kai Hombu in New Braunfels, Texas and the Utah Shorin-Kai Gassuku (Outside training) at the East Canyon Resort near Park City. This is a classy martial arts school with many brilliant people.  This is about learning martial arts - the old fashion way.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Arizona's Grandmaster in Martial Arts


The Arizona Hombu, or administrative dojo for Seiyo No Shorin-Ryu Karate Kobudo Kai(TM) is home of Hall-of-Fame Karate Instructor and Grandmaster of traditional karate & Kobudo, Soke Hausel. The Arizona Hombu dojo & Soke Hausel welcomes you to visit the Hombu in Mesa Arizona. 

Soke Hausel taught Karate, Kobudo, Jujustsu, Iaido and other Samurai arts along with Women's Self-Defense, Self-Defense, and other martial arts for 3 decades at the University of Wyoming prior to moving to Arizona in 2006. He has been a martial artist his entire life and loves to share his knowledge with his students. Adults and families will benefit from his teaching expertise, experience, and enthusiasm.

Awarded ‘Martial Arts Genius’ by Juko Kai International, Instructor of the Year by the American Karate Association, International Instructor of the Year by the North American Black Belt Hall of Fame, and Grandmaster of the Year by Juko Kai International, World Martial Arts Hall of Fame, Universal Martial Arts Hall of Fame, Latin American Martial Arts Society, World Martial Arts Black Belt Hall of Fame and Shinja Martial Arts University.


Soke Hausel loves teaching martial arts. He is an instructor's instructor, and few things give him greater joy than watching his students progress in martial arts as well as in life. He often hears from his students in their professional endeavors, family matters, and life's pursuits, and he jumps for joy whenever he hears anything from his current and past students around the world. 


Notable people in Gilbert, Arizona











Thursday, September 11, 2014

Best Karate School of Mesa, Arizona

Karate, Kobudo, Self-Defense and Samurai arts  classes at the Arizona Hombu Dojo. "Thank you" again for selecting the Arizona Hombu (Arizona School of Traditional Karate) as the "Best Karate School in Mesa" in 2013, 2014 and in 2015. We work hard to be the best karate school in the West.

The name of our karate school - Arizona Hombu comes from the Japanese which means world headquarters, or administrative headquarters for Shorin-Ryu Karate. To have a hombu karate dojo implies that the karate school is home for a grandmaster of karate. Our karate grandmaster, known as Sokewas also selected for international recognition this summer for martial arts and geological sciences.

At the Arizona Hombu dojo, we share our 100 years of martial arts experience with adult (women and men) and family members in our Mesa Karate Classes. When you join our karate school, in Mesa, you become a member of our martial arts family.

Here is what is in store for you at the Arizona Hombu, our Arizona and International Training Center:

The more you train now, the less you will bleed when it really counts!
(1) Tuesday night classes are the focus on traditional karate. In our first class beginning at 6:45 pm, our students warm up with kihon (basic training exercises) (基本) and either work individually, or with a partner and practice kicks, punches, blocks, etc. This is followed by kata (forms) (型) training. At some point during the kata training, we break down into pairs and train with bunkai (practical applications). This is excellent physical fitness training as well as training for self-defense and self-improvement.

(2) our Wednesday Self-Defense Class is for the whole family and we have a high percentage of women and school teachers training with us including some university professors and senior citizens. Kids train with their parents.

We teach our students defenses against single attackers, sometimes more than one attacker, against a thug with a gun, a knife, a sword, or club. We also teach them to use the weapons at hand (hands, feet, books, magazines, car keys, etc).

(3) Thursday Kobudo and Samurai Arts classes focus on the traditional Kobudo weapons of the Okinawan peasants and also the traditional weapons of the Japanese Samurai and Okinawan Pechin. At the beginning of 2015, we began training with kama in the Kobudo class and yari in the Samurai class. Starting in June 2015, our students began to focus on the 6-foot staff known as bo and also the samurai sword known as katana.

Group training in kata (forms).



Bunkai training (applications from kata).

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Traditional Karate Classes in Arizona

What is sport karate? What is traditional karate?
Photo courtesy of Heather From, Uchi Deshi

Remember the classic scene between Miyagi and Daniel San in the Karate Kid

Daniel San “All right, so what are the rules here?” 
Miyagi “Don't know. First time you, first time me”. 

Daniel San “Well, I figured you knew about this stuff. I figured you went to these before. Oh great, I'm dead. I am dead. You told me you fought a lot”.

Miyagi For life, not for points.

"Sport karate has two branches: kata which focuses solely on outward appearances and kumite which is about winning and losing" - Kyoshi Tsuneo Kinjo, Okinawa, Japan

The great master of Okinawan Shorin-Ryu Karate, Gichin Funakoshi, who is acknowledged as the father of modern karate wrote,  “The purpose of karate lies not in defeat or victory, but in the perfection of its participants.” 

Traditional Karate is different from sport. In traditional karate there is no competition but instead traditional karate is geared towards positive attitude and powerful self-defense. The secret to traditional karate lies in training and understanding karate kata, the interpretation of kata known as bunkai, body hardening known as shitai kori, basics known as kihon, exercises known as undo, and weapons known as kobudo

In sport karate, participants are penalized for power.

“Traditional karate has the ability to train your body to the point whereby you can overcome an opponent with one technique without the need for weapons.” - Chojun Miyagi (Okinawa, Japan)

Traditional karate is not MMA. 

"Kata is the origin of karate. If there is no kata, there is no karate!  Without kata, there is no martial art; instead it becomes nothing more than primitive street fighting.” Soke Shoshin Nagamine (Okinawa, Japan)

We invite you to train at the Arizona Hombu with Hall-of-Fame grandmaster Soke Hausel in the  traditional martial arts of Karate, Kobudo, Self-Defense & Samurai Arts with other adults and families. Visit our traditional martial arts school on the corner of Baseline with MacDonald and experience the difference of traditional martial arts. We have decades of knowledge in karate, kobudo, samurai arts, self-defense, jujutsu, martial arts history, martial arts philosophy that we are willing to share with our students. 


We hope you will join our martial arts and karate students from Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Phoenix, Queens Creek, Tempe and Scottsdale at our traditional hombu. Check our website for class times.



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Saturday, April 26, 2014

Traditional Karate


Torii gate in Japan. Photo by Heather From, Uchi Deshi
One would need to search the corners of the Earth to find anyone who has not heard of karate. Karate was created on a tiny group of islands known as Okinawa. Because of pragmatic combat effectiveness, karate spread throughout the world in the 20th century after it had been revealed to the public such that today, almost every person has a general idea of what karate is.

Many fighting sports in the world try to mimic karate and incorporate karate-like techniques; but just because someone kicks and punches does not imply they know karate let alone understand martial arts. Any school boy or girl will kick and punch under certain circumstances, but this does not mean they are karate practitioners. Unfortunately, few people understand the difference between sport karate and traditional karate. Even those who practise karate, most do not understand there is a dramatic difference between sport and traditional.
'Aerial Karate' - color pencil sketch by Soke Hausel
Sport Karate, as pointed out by Tsuneo Kinjo from Okinawa, has two branches - kata and kumite. In sport Karate, kata is practiced more like a dance contest with a fashion show - performed for trophies with a general lack of understanding of bunkai (pragmatic self-defense applications). Kumite (sparring) in sport karate is also about winning and losing. Those who train in sport karate wear padded gloves and try to out-score each other requiring many unfocused techniques. The Father of Modern Karate, Gichin Funakoshi of Okinawa wrote, "The purpose of Karate lies not in defeat or victory, but in perfection of its participants".

Traditional Karate is very different. It is about perfecting oneself and as stated by Chojun Miyagi, it is also about "... training oneself to be able to overcome an opponent with a single technique". This is why those who train at the Seiyo No Shorin-Ryu Karate Kobudo Kai hombu in Mesa, Arizona, are taught to develop maximum focus and work towards a skill of a one-punch knockout: not a knockout in a ring or cage, but a knockout that may save your life during an aggressive attack on the street. If a person has to use more than one technique in self-defense, they stand to lose the battle and possibly their life.
Gichin Funakoshi, pencil sketch by Soke Hausel

By definition, a martial art requires not only martial combat technique, but also esoteric value to guide a martial artist along an ethical and moral path. Think about it for a second. How many politicians are you aware of who train in traditional martial arts? Most of us would say none, others might answer Vladimir Putin, the Premier of Russia. After all Putin is reported to have a black belt in sport Judo.

But traditional martial and politics are antipathetic towards one another. Traditional martial arts requires honesty, ethics and morals. Politics requires a broken polygraph.










'Okinawan sunrise', pencil sketch bo Soke Hausel