2019 Atlantic-Pacific Tang Soo Do Federation
Southeastern Regional Black Belt Camp and Shim Sa

By International Master Michael Jett

The 2019 Southeastern Regional Black Belt Camp took place the weekend of November 1st through 3rd. It was a very cold camp this year for our 18th trip to the beautiful Camp ASSCA in the woods of Jackson's Gap, AL. We started off with our I.T.S. (Instructor Training Symposium) group for some great classes geared towards instructors and assistants. We also got our first chance to train with our guest instructor from the South West region, Senior Master Peter Estrada. Then we started with the camp itself with Masters Jett and Sandberg getting everyone geared up for a great camp at our orientation Friday night. The camp was a little different this year as we got straight into our traditional forms training on Friday night and saved the test for Saturday morning.

The test itself went very well with a very strong group of testing students including our two best of test winners. Carly Hall of Karate World of North Georgia for the adults and Joshua Chandler of Chandler Family Martial Arts for the youth. Meanwhile the non-testing students got to experience some great classes with several of the 4th degree Master Instructors from around the region.

After lunch the whole group got back together for the next set of classes where they were able to focus on some great escrima work for the youth with Master Watson-Jones and a great practical application/physiological focus class on Sip Soo with Senior Master Estrada. These classes lead us into the afternoon when the youth were able to take advantage of the zip line and archery courses that the camp offers. The teen and adults were able to work on an intense practical self-defense class with Senior Master Rachel Lynn-Chisum.

That night for dinner we were able to unwind a little with with a great activity that we got from our friends in the North East region called meet the Masters. All of the students in the camp got to sit with the various Master instructors and ask them questions. This is always one of the best things that we do at the camp since it allows everyone to really get a chance to connect with people they don't normally get the chance to talk to.

After dinner we all had a chance to review some great Tang Soo Do history with KJN St. James. It gave everyone a real chance to understand where we came from in our martial arts roots and how we got to where we are today. The final class of the day was a great finish by Senior Master Estrada who gave all of the adults and teens a great overview of trigger points and how they can be used to help heal the body after a hard day of training.

Of course, you can't go through a camp without talking about the parties on Saturday night. The kids were able to have a great time watching a movie in the basement of the rotary lodge. The teens still having some energy got together for a movie in the dining hall and a few games in the pavilion. Then the adults had a great time at the bonfire.

Finally, we got to the final day of training where International Masters Busby and Jett took our adults through an intense judging class and Senior Master Chisum lead the youth in a score keeping class. For the final class before we had to break up for the weekend, everyone was back together with Grandmaster St. James for the traditional form to the drum class. This year we went back to Bassai Dae as the form and everyone came together for a number of great run-throughs.

It was one of the best camps we have had with the Federation and I hope that we can see everyone back next year.

Tang Soo!




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