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3 Days Summer Karate Training Camp in California, USA

Karate Camp in California

Every year, International San Ten Karate Association hosts a weekend-long, multiple-instructor training camp in the Sierra Nevada mountains right outside Yosemite National Park. Located among nature and set in the magnificent of Yosemite, the camp offers participants a unique opportunity to train, enjoy the fresh air, and make connections with other Karatekas.

Meet the instructors

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  • Daily multiple training sessions
  • Dan testing opportunities available
  • Beautiful location right outside Yosemite
  • Extra activities during free time
  • Major meals during the camp
  • 2 nights accommodation

Skill level

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate


3 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: English
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This Karate summer training includes bunkhouse accommodations, hot showers, and free meals for the duration of the camp. For those who require more privacy, Fish Camp offers many lodging options, some within walking distance of the training hall. Please contact The International San Ten Karate Association if you require any assistance.



The three-day camp will include the following sections:

  • Traditional kata instruction: Traditional katas appropriate to beginners, black belts, and senior instructors
  • Historical kata application: Historical jujutsu and self-defense applications of Karate
  • Kumite skills: Kumite strategies for black belts and beginners with world renowned Sensei
  • Kobudo Kata: by ISKA Sensei
  • Basic principles: Generating power using contraction or expansion, Tai Sabaki, body alignment, and principles of power
  • Black belt testing: The Sierra Camp provides black belt grading. Testing begins the moment you arrive and continues through the weekend.


Self defense

Karate is a martial art of self defense. The Japanese characters which form the word Karate mean "empty hands". Literally, this means that the Karate practitioner uses his unarmed body to aid him in a reliable system of self defense.

As a method of self-defense, Karate is probably as old as the human race. However, only in recent years has this method of empty-hand defense taken on a vast scientific approach in which body movement, timing, balance, and even psychology are studied and applied in formulating techniques that are effective against any would-be assailant.

Physical discipline

Many people have fallen victim to an undisciplined, over indulgent, and stressful society. A look around clearly shows man's poor condition. Disregarding the need to balance our activities with proper exercise creates obesity, chronic back pain, weak and flabby muscles, poor posture, minimal flexibility, lack of endurance, tension, depression and emotional instability.

The superb co-ordination and stamina required in executing each Karate movement demands the utmost from your body. With training, you will learn to strengthen your body with proper exercises. In time, each part of your body will take a new dimension of conditioning and growth. Learning these skills will aid you in eliminating and preventing a variety of illnesses and other conditions that cause your body to deteriorate. Karate training brings about a great physical high which will overcome any temptation to indulge in drugs, alcohol, or junk food.

Mental discipline

Self-defense does not in itself create a worthy art. Karate-Do involves mental training as well as physical training. It is hoped that the practitioner will open new doors of learning and understanding - that exercise will take greater meaning. After many hours of practice, the meaning of "Kara" or "empty" will change from the literal definition to a deeper, more aesthetic meaning - ridding the mind of negative thoughts and feelings thereby creating space for useful actions more worthy of cultivation.

Spiritual discipline

As harmonious interaction of mind and body evolves, the practitioner will come to realize that we are mere links in the chain of life. Practicing Karate only to prepare for an attack that may never come proves useless. Striving to strengthen one's mind and body only to achieve worldly happiness would also prove useless if death comes tomorrow. One must learn to expand his thoughts beyond the physical realm in to the spiritual sphere. Learn to forget yourself and to adapt to the pace of nature, and you will learn to accept the absolute truth. You must study this well.


Rick Llewelyn
Hanshi Ricardo Llewelyn has been practicing Shotokan Karate since 1970. He holds a Kyu-Dan (9th Degree Black Belt) in Shotokan Karate and has been granted titles of Hanshi, Kyoshi, and Shihan with the International Santen Karate Association (ISKA).


The ISKA Sierra Camp is held at the Jack L. Boyd Outdoor School at Camp Green Meadows, in Fish Camp, California. Fish Camp is about 1.5 hours north of the Fresno Air Terminal on Highway 41.


All meals are included, starting from dinner on August 12, 2016 and ending with breakfast on August 14, 2016.

Things to do (optional)

Between training sessions, ISKA participants can enjoy the camp's tall trees, green lawns, burbling brook, hiking trails, horseshoe pits, basketball court, volleyball or badminton court, campfire meetings, and restored Miwok Indian village.

What's included

  • 2 nights accommodation
  • Daily Karate training
  • Daily meals throughout training camp
  • Dan testing

What's not included

  • Miscellaneous expenses
  • Travel expenses
  • Travel insurance

How to get there

Driving directions from San Francisco

From San Francisco International Airport (SFO), travel east on 580/205 to Manteca, south on 99 to Merced, east on 140 to Mariposa, south on 49 to Oakhurst, and north on 41 to Fish Camp. 215 miles, 5 hours.

Driving directions from Los Angeles

  • From Los Angeles, go north on 405 to 5 to the Grapevine, 99 north to Fresno, 41 north to Fish Camp. 285 miles, 5.5 hours.
  • From Fresno Air Terminal, turn left out of the parking lot, then right on McKinley.
  • Go east on McKinley about three miles to Highway 41 (a freeway).
  • Take 41 north to Fish Camp.
  • It is about 62 miles, 1.5 hours to Fish Camp.

For all routes, Oakhurst is your last-minute shopping spot. There is a Vons, Raleys, and Longs Drugs near the intersection of Hwy 41 and Hwy 49. All three have at some selection of camping gear.

Finding the camp: Enter Fish Camp on Highway 41. Watch for a small pond on the right. Immediately after the pond is a small bridge. Less than a block later look for White Chief Mountain Road on the right. Follow this single-lane road about 100 yards through the trees and cabins, watching for small signs that point out the Jack L. Boyd Outdoor School at Camp Green Meadows.

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