Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Robert Ellis Uses Martial Arts to Instill Confidence in Kids in Tigard
By Kristen ForbesThe Times, Oct 29, 2009

A teacher of Asian history once explained to Ellis that if he wanted to understand the culture, he had to immerse himself in a cultural activity, whether it was flower arranging or martial arts. He gravitated to a karate school in New York, where he grew up. He went on to undergraduate school, then the Marine Corps, then attended graduate school at the University of Oregon.

Ellis worked as the CEO of a high-tech company that grew to national prominence and started several other companies before starting Karate on Main three years ago. One evening he had a conversation with his wife over a glass of wine and it occurred to him that what he really wants to do is give back to young people.

“In my opinion, there is a lack of character education and development during the formative years,” Ellis says. “Also, there is a crisis of obesity among juveniles.”
Through martial arts, Ellis strives to guide children (and adults, as well) through a “journey of self-discovery” that teaches them how to be better and more peaceful through strength. Unlike in traditional sports, the competition in martial arts comes from oneself.

“The process is one of first learning discipline. Physical discipline always comes before mental or spiritual discipline,” Ellis says. “Physical discipline leads to the ability to concentrate. The ability to concentrate then leads to the development of skill. As skill development occurs, it leads to confidence. Confidence leads to more concentration, more skilled development, and eventually what we have is kids with self-esteem.”

Ellis teaches value-based life skills: respect, perseverance and work ethic among them. These skills are obtained once the physical training takes hold. Mental discipline follows physical discipline, which then leads to philosophical, or spiritual, discipline.

“The understanding of true humility is only realized eventually,” Ellis says.
The lessons at Karate on Main are always age-appropriate, he says. Community is developed during the process, which Ellis builds on by offering movie nights, picnics and other activities for kids and parents to share.

Ellis, a sixth-degree black belt, says his goal is to get all of his students black belts.
“A black belt is a universally recognized symbol of excellence,” Ellis says, “like being an Eagle Scout or concert musician. Everybody knows it takes skill development, perseverance and work ethic over a long period of time. No one has ever said, ‘I wish I hadn’t received my black belt.’”
The life lessons, he says, are even more important than the belt. Ellis is proud to provide an opportunity for his students to learn and grow.

“The ability to provide a positive influence and to provide the training and curriculum toward goals of self-improvement is so rewarding,” he says. “When most adults think back on what was their most enjoyable job, often people will remember when they worked construction for a summer in college — because it’s an integration of mind, body and spirit. Often, you’ll find the most rewarding hobbies have that integration, as well. So it’s very rewarding to discover that integration in my work.”

The dojo on Main Street is designed to capture the look and feel of classical and historical China and Japan. Also included in the studio are an acupuncture clinic and meditation area. Ellis stresses a holistic approach to martial arts.

“What we do here can’t be found anywhere else,” he says. “Regardless of whatever words are spoken in organized sports, every year it becomes more and more about winning and less and less about the development of the kid and the development of character. There are many exceptions and many great coaches, but as an organized activity, it really has become all about winning.
“In this day and age, we have school systems that don’t teach character because of political correctness. Many of these kids are not getting this instruction at home, either because they’re children of the “Me Generation” or because of economic pressure on the middle class. You have two working parents, and there’s just not enough time. What’s happening to our kids? Generally, we have seen across the board a loss of respect, a loss of civility. These are the very kids that someday will be running AIG or nuclear power plants or becoming surgeons.”

Through martial arts, Ellis hopes to instill respect, civility, and other values that are crucial to children’s development.

Karate on Main is located at 12566 S.W. Main St. in Tigard. The Web site is
www.karateonmain.com, and the phone number is 503-968-1600.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The MDA (and my Sensei) need your help

Dear Dojo friends and family,

Sensei Ellis is being ‘arrested for good’ on Sept. 10th 2008, by the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). His ‘bail’ has been set at $2400.00. Please help Sensei get out of jail and help kids and with Muscular Dystrophy at the same time!! Donations are 100% tax deductible!! (once you donate you will receive a tax receipt via email). To make a donation (any and all amounts are welcome!) and learn more about this event, please go to the following link:


Just click on the “help make my goal” icon! This is a secure site so your online donations are safe!! However, we appreciate some people may be apprehensive about making online payments. If this is the case, there will be a collection box at the dojo for cash and check payments. Please make checks payable to the ‘Muscular Dystrophy Association’.

Please help Sensei Ellis help Jerry’s kids!!!! Thank you in advance for your generosity!!

Kind regards,
Seishinkan Administrator

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

SEISHINKAN Opens New Medical Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Clinic

SEISHINKAN Karate on Main is pleased to announce the opening of a Medical Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Clinic in the newly expanded dojo. The East-West Clinic will initially provide services on Tuesdays and Fridays expanding to 5 days per week in the near future. Insurance billing is available and new patients are welcome. The clinic director is Karen Weisman M.D.

Dr. Weisman is a practicing Internal Medicine physician in Corvallis, Oregon where she heads her own clinic. Dr. Weisman has a keen interest in sports medicine and has qualified as a physician with the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Working with athletes has led to her certification in medical acupuncture. Of special interest is sports biomechanics, performance optimization and pain reduction. Karen received her medical degree from Northwestern University and Certificate of Medical Acupuncture from UCLA. Dr. Weisman has continued her studies in neuro-anatomical acupuncture and sports medicine through McMaster University (Ontario). Prior education includes a Master's degree (MPH) from U. C. Berkeley and her BS from the University of Southern California.

Oriental Medicine is provided by Yoshi Ito MS, L.Ac. Sensei Ito holds an Acupuncture License from the Oregon Medical Board in addition to an Acupuncture Certificate from National Certification Committee of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM). He has provided clinical care at the Beyond Addiction Clinic, as well as, running the Ito Clinic of Oriental Medicine in Beaverton, OR. He holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Utah and is a graduate of the College of Oriental Medicine, Berkeley, CA.

Clinic Hours
The Clinic is open Tuesdays and Fridays from 10 A.M until 4 P.M.
and by Appointment.

To schedule please call toll free: 877.447.5196

Sunday, June 1, 2008

SEISHINKAN Dojo Expansion Completed

SEISHINKAN Karate on Main Dojo Expansion Completed

The dojo expansion project is complete with only minor work yet remaining. The practice floor was increased by 35%! The expansion was necessary to accomodate our rapidly growing student body. A major success was moving the very large (and heavy) mirrors without breaking. Happily this was accomplished, thanks to the assistance of our students.

Three treatment rooms were built for SEISHINKAN Karate on Main's new East-West medicine clinic which will provide both medical acupuncture and oriental medicine treatments. The next post will highlight the clinic and staff.

Friday, April 25, 2008

April Promotion Test

Congratulations to the following students for their effort and hard work!

Nevaeh Eckroth, Lion I
Anthony Yatskov, Shark II
Isaiah Hollingsworth, Cobra I
Marco Lopez, Cobra II
Michelle Martinez, Shark I
Nathan Saier, Lion II
Jimmy Shea, Cobra I
Tegan Kelley, Shark II
Kyle Haslem, Crest

Tigram Mansuryan, 6th Kyu
Hannah Bryant, 9th Kyu
Carson Padbury, 7th Kyu
Sierra Haslem, Crest
Kaden Haslem, Crest
Brynn Kelly, 9th Kyu
Amber Lindstrom, 9th Kyu
Landon Carlson, 10 Kyu
Delaney Shea, 4th Kyu
Simone Smith, 9th Kyu
Elliott Shipley, 10th Kyu
Damon Bray, 10 Kyu
Brendon Bray, 10 Kyu
Ethan Ecroth, 7th Kyu
Natalie Clark, 10th Kyu
Jacob Plummer, 8th Kyu
Malory Olsen, 6th Kyu
Zander Eisenhauer, 6th Kyu
Nicole Neal, 7th Kyu

Jim Bryant, 10th Kyu
Francisco Corona, 8th Kyu
Jaimie Ellis, 4th Kyu
Andrew Evans, Crest
Andrea Gillette, Crest
Robin Hamblet, Crest
Leyenda Lloyd, Crest
Susan Shea, 7th Kyu
Robin Smith , 9th Kyu
Amanda McMillan, 5th Kyu
Brad Bray, 10 Kyu
JoAnn Silagy, Crest

Chief Instructor's Report: SEISHINKAN Kata Clinic

From: The Chief Instructor

I just finished the Portland Gasshuku a few hours ago and am writing this message from Sensei Ellis's house. The event was a great success. I heard so many good comments from many participants who came up to me after the Gasshuku. The focus of the Gasshuku was kata. The first day, we spent two hours going through details of Sanchin kata, the fundamental kata for our style. During the class, we went through why Sanchin kata is so important, and how Sanchin kata will be used in other kaishu-gata. On the second day, we had senior sensei (Sensei Bob Ellis, Sensei Gene Villa, Sensei Brent Hartwig and Sensei Ernie Brennecke) check every single participant's kata. Each participant got private lessons and comments from some of the finest instructors in the IOGKF USA that he or she can bring back home and practice. We also had a short lecture of Goju-Ryu history and concerning Higaonna Sensei's famous Yoyogi Dojo training back 40 years ago by Sensei Bob Ellis and Sensei Ernie Brennecke. They were quite interesting stories. Sensei Ernie was in the Yoyogi Dojo in 1964, one year before I was born! How old is he? Please don't ask:-) I would like to thank all attendants, and dojo heads, and senior sensei (Sensei Bob, Sensei Gene, Sensei Brent, Sensei Ernie) for sharing your experience and knowledge that made this gasshuku so special.

A Special thank you to Sensei Bob and his family for the great hospitality and for hosting this event. I surely had a wonderful time. We have so many talented instructors within our organization. We should start setting the stage to ask for these instructors to come forward and share their knowledge. It will benefit all of us.

Best regards,
Tetsuji Nakamura
IOGKF North America Chief Instructor

Friday, March 21, 2008

April 18th - 19th - 20th 2008

Tetsuji Nakamura
Robert E. Ellis


Special Sessions:
Origins of Okinawan Kata

DO NOT miss this
opportunity to improve your Kata Skills!

Cost: $100.00 3 DAYS / $70.00 2 DAYS

on/or Before 15 April 2008
12566 SW Main Street
Tigard, Oregon 97223

REGISTER AT THE DOOR: $110.00 / $75.00

For more information call: 503-968-1600