Shihan Kym Reid - Renshi
My first introduction to martial arts was in 1970 experimenting with techniques from “Bruce Tegner’s Complete Book of Self-Defence” and TV's “Championship wrestling”. At the time I was spending weekends at the Salisbury Colt Breakers when I decided to join the karate club nearby.
So it was in 1972 I joined the Rob Dobson Karate club in Salisbury which focused on full contact. Two people already with the club were Stefan Jelinic and John Harman. Max Bell David Gooding and Brian Bellchambers also joined the same year.
In 1974 Rob arranged an interclub visit with the Samurai Karate club run by Sensei Bill Vaughan ( John Schuh's former instructor) to see how they trained and mixed for a friendly spar. Bill and Rob stayed in contact for many years after that. There were many other interclub visits including with Sensei John Boswell where we studied motorcycle chain defence, Sensei Joe Lamarca with kata, Sensei Karol Stojko contact sparring and use of Ki and Sensei Sojiro Ito who had his high ranking Go Ju brothers over from Japan taking conditioning exercises ( including 300 kicks to the abdomen).
In recent times Sensei Karol Stojko reminded me that he was part of my 10 man line-up for Shodan in 1980. It's hard for me to recall because we always sparred at the end of every training session.
My first competition was at the Adelaide University in 1974. Not happy with the non contact rules Rob and Karol, who in my opinion were two of the hardest karateka in SA in those days, joined forces with Bill and Joe to form the Australian Martial arts Association catering for “contact” tournaments, embracing all styles.
It was in 1981 that an opportunity came to train with Bill “Superfoot” Wallace in Melbourne, so Brian Bellchambers and I drove over to train that week-end and saw some very inspiring flexibility and speed.
At the very first AMAA tournament in 1983 is where I also met Dante Roccisano who was one of the corner judges.
From 1974 to 1986 I had fought in many of the “contact” tournaments and in 1986 I was awarded my 2nd Dan after completing another line-up. I retired from competing at this time and joined Rob and Karol as an official from then on.
In 1988 Sensei Rob had decided to retire and move to Canberra. He presented me with his Oyama manuals and left me in charge of the club. I read through the books and realized that in 16 years I had only covered the basics. I was motivated then to further my training so, while continuing to teach karate, I donned my white belt and joined the neighboring Jujitsu club that trained in Jishukan style. Head instructors were Sensei Paul Jurkowski and Sensei Craig Swingler. Dave Ashby who was a senior student in Jujitsu at the time at their training camp in the hills in 1988 I met Sensei Peter Schuller.
It was in 1990 at another training seminar Craig hosted that I met with Kancho David Hand, founder of Bushi Kempo Ju-Jitsu and partnered with Sensei Graham Dunn who I began to train with frequently. He was an instructor for Correctional Services and later for the S.A. Police Department and unfortunately died some 20 years later. I improved my Ju-Jitsu tremendously with Graham’s guidance and also at workshops in Tsutsumi Hozan Ryu Ju-Jitsu with Shihan Jan de Jong. Several years later I joined the Australian Ju-Jitsu Association and became Vice president in SAJJA with sensei’s Graham Dunn and Craig Swingler who was president. At this time to improve my throws and strangling techniques I began training at a judo club in Elizabeth Grove and also hired the hall for private training.
Eventually I decided to hand over the karate club to other senior members to focus on jujitsu. The St. Jays Recreation Centre management (SACRA) then approached me to run self-defence classes for them. This became the St. Jays Freestyle JuJitsu club which I ran with Dave Ashby.
In 1991 I was awarded my 3rd Dan at a grading day. The requirement was to demonstrate my instructing skills by running a workshop, demonstrate my jujitsu skills and then had to defend knife attacks by Joe Lamarca. The grading panel consisted of blackbelts in Judo, jujitsu, karate, aiki-jujutsu and kungfu.
In 1992 I took the opportunity to train at a Larry Hartsell seminar and was partnered with Ivan McWilliams of Kemka Silat. We had met many times and fought each other at the Apollo Stadium in 1985. His continual contact, running his forearm along my neck, as we tried Shoot Wrestling is now a very useful and effective part of my techniques. His son Nathan and Ivan come down from Qld. occasionally and help at our IBF training days as you can see from recent photos.
In 1994 I completed the coaching principles and martial arts specific course with the Australian Sports Commission and in 1995 was awarded my 4th Dan by the association, once again by peers Bill Vaughan, Joe Lamarca, Karol Stojko and Dante Roccisano.
In 1997 I received a “Service Award” from the South Australian Community Recreation Association (SACRA) for my years of voluntarily teaching of the martial arts at the community centre.
It was in July of 2000 whilst refereeing a tournament at Gillies Plains TAFE Bill Vaughan made a surprise announcement and presented me in front of the huge audience with my 5th Dan certificate.
It was at these many functions and other seminars that I met with people such as Nino Pilla, Zibby Kruk, Bob Sullivan, Anthony Hockley, Sam Gervasi, Joe Ip, Sojiro Ito and Colin Hanley.
In 2002 St. Jays Rec. Centre was put under caretaker management so I temporarily closed the club and taught privately. I also assisted Sensei Phil Barker with his SA Ju-Jitsu Karate-Do club and Brian Tiley and Paul Monopoli’s Womens and Childrens Karate club. For that I received an honorary membership and also became a member of the I.K.O, Kyokushinkai kan.
At this time I met Hanshi John Taylor of the Australian Kyokushin Karate Association. It had been a long time since I saw kata’s performed so well and as I was taught by Sensei Rob Dobson. I mentioned this and Hanshi John told me of Rob Dobson's instructor, Wally Szlagowski. I had never thought as to who trained Rob so this is when I began to research his lineage and at the time I didn't appreciate how much this would change my understanding of martial arts history.
In 2005 I performed demonstrations for the Tea Tree Gully Mayor to help a former student. When Bill Vaughan passed away his members, my old students and men involved in the W&C club group persuaded me to re-open my club at the Burragah Recreation Centre, this was the rebirth under the more appropriate name of Jinen Karate Jitsu. Bill's students Brian Tiley, David Tidman, Phil Kern, John Schuh and Paul Monopoli began training with me.
2007 proved to be a busy year. In January I ran a knife defence session for Aikibudo Australia's seminar and in February Karol, Dante and others of the AMAA awarded me with my 6th Dan as seen in the minutes of the meeting.
It was in 2007 through a friend, Rebecca, that I had the pleasure to Sensei Terry Riches, President of the IBF Australia. Terry offered the role as SA Rep. to me but I decided to persevere with the AMAA association which had stagnated under the new leadership. I resigned as Vice-president of the AMAA and accepted the vacant role of SA rep in the IBF. This was a big decision after 24 years of supporting the AMAA as a member, working actively on the committee, sponsoring and officiating tournaments and as a student of founder Rob Dobson.
This proved to be the best thing that could have happened. It’s been exciting to have the opportunity to continue working with the "Better community of martial artists", especially with Karol and Dante supporting me. It wasn’t long before I was joined by many old friends from the network over the years who were also disenchanted with the changes to the AMAA They continue to give me great support and I thank them for that.
In October 2007 I held my first IBF training day with over 50 people representing 14 clubs from here and interstate, but also attended a Systema seminar and was also a guest of Sifu Nino Pilla to train with Dan Insonato, Francis Fong, and Jean Jacques Machado, for this I am very grateful. Nino and I also met again the next year just after he had finished his work as a stunt double in “Big Stan”. I also was a guest instructor for the ITF 8 hour train-a-thon held by old friend Noel Keating. Terry Riches presented me with an IBF 6th Dan certificate in recognition of my work and performance and shortly after asked me to take on the role as Vice President nationally. Now I am involved in many new projects including constructing and maintaining the websites, raising funds through seminars for Beyondblue and the Cancer Council.
Earlier in September 2007 I had managed to encourage Sensei Rob Dobson to meet with me in Blacktown, Sydney to catch up with the mentor he hadn’t seen for 30 years, GM Wally Szlagowski. Sensei Bruce Freeman had set up a great weekend of training and reunion night. Rob passed onto me that weekend an original training film sent to Wally in the 1960’s by Yasuhiro Konishi and I have now put it up on youtube for all to see, especially for my friends in the Japan Ryobu Kai. (organization of Shindo Jinen Ryu Karate Do ) Also was a DVD with many films of the early SAKA fights and early training days with the Salisbury Karate club in the 1970’s. It proved to be a very important time for it was soon after that Wally was killed in a pedestrian accident.
In 2008 I had another two successful IBF training days. Dante, Karol and myself also flew to WA to participate in the Martial Arts Group Camp. We made many new friends and met with some prominent martial artists such as Barry Bradshaw. This also gave me a chance to meet with WA IBF rep, Paul Marston and long time friend Sensei Phil Barker who had shifted to Perth several years before.
In 2009 at the IBF training day Terry Riches awarded me a Senior Teacher Diploma within the IBF International for the work introducing new members here, in WA, NSW, and overseas.
It was to be a busy year with a training weekend as tribute to Wally Szlagowski in Sydney and with members of the OzBudo forum encouraging a visit from Mr Speakman’s Kenpo 5.0, the representatives urgently needed a venue in which to hold the seminar. Through my great network I secured the Ridgehaven school gym and we all had the opportunity to train with Mr. Speakman himself. The Oz Budo forum members included Shawn Donaldson, Chris Gillies and Suzanne Woods. I'm very appreciative of the Speakmans video collection afterwards for my assistance.
Late in the year I was approached to present Japanese Martial Arts at the Wynn Vale Lutheran school for their Japanese day. Now that I’m writing it, 2009 seems busier than I remembered but it is a pleasure to realize what a community of great members and friends we have in the IBF Australia.
In March 2010 I held the 6th IBF Training day with guest instructors Graham Kuerschner of Krav Maga, Ivan McWilliams of Kemka Silat, Terry Riches and Chris Gillies. During the year David Gooding from Queensland came down to get in some training with me and I arranged for Sensei Rob to present him with his 2nd Dan. He also has a senior rank in Tang Soo Do and in Kyokushin. Additionally this year I hosted another training day with over 50 people training.
In November 2010 it was a privilege to be one of the fighters in line-ups for two of Karols students going for Black. Both Karol and I were struggling for breath as the rounds came to an end but, not only were we happy with the boy's efforts but glad that they appreciated us as "active" instructors.
Our club is now enjoying recognition in several international organizations of good repute and we have formed many great new friendships here, interstate and overseas and enjoy the long standing network of like minded people.
I find myself very busy now not only with my own club but also promoting the IBF and it's members and where I can I also try to educate people about the Shindo Jinen Ryu style, Rob Dobson and Wally Szlagowski, all sadly lacking the recognition deserved. Sensei Rob Dobson, Shihan Jan de Jong and Sensei Graham Dunn were all great technicians in timing and application of techniques in their own styles and set a benchmarks for our standards.
In 2016 I was awarded my 7th Dan by the IBF Global and 6th by the DNBK. After reviewing my performance I was also awarded title of Renshi, only the second at the time in Australia.
I hope this long winded review and the website will encourage others to assess the path they take and gives references for further research. There are some who's paths I have crossed who have through scurrilous deceit boast of 8th Dan's and Hanshi titles (given by themselves). Always research and if they can't put up history chances there is none. Remember martial arts can be a life of learning and I hope there is a lot more to add to my experience yet.
National President of International Budo Federation Australia Inc. as of 2019
International Budo Federation - Australia (IBF Aust)
International alliance of Martial Arts Schools (IAOMAS)
International Karate Organization, Kyokushinkaikan, Honbu (IKO)
Japan Ryobu Kai International
Dai Nippon Butoku kai
Szlagowski Karate Association
6th Dan - Karate Jitsu - Australian Martial Arts Association
6th Dan / Renshi - Jujutsu - Dai Nippon Butoku Kai
7th Dan / Shihan - Karate Jitsu - International Budo Federation
4th Dan - Karate - Szlagowski Karate Association