Category Archives: Events

WSKF – Sensei Stephan visits Solis Ortus

It is always a privilege and honour when people from other Dojo’s visit our Dojo. Last night was no exception on the rule.

Sensei Stephan and two of his students from Steyn Dojo in
Potchefstroom did us the honour to come and train with the best kumite Sensei in South Africa; Sensei Eugene Oosthuizen.

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The Solis Ortus students welcomed them with great expectation and trained hard with them. Sensei Eugene presented an incredible kumite class with lots of defending and attacking techniques. The class was vibrant, enthusiastic and energetic.

After a great class full of new knowledge and hard work, we can just say thank you to Sensei Eugene and wish our guests a save trip back home and an open invitation to visit again.

Written by: Heilethe Calitz

OPEN DAY 2017

A very famous Chinese proverb says:

“If you want 1 year of prosperity, grow grain. If you want 10 years of prosperity, grow trees. If you want 100 years of prosperity, grow people.”

2017 is exactly the year where Solis Ortus wants to prosper in growing people. With all the great qualities karate gives to an individual it is hard not to feel proud to be a Karateka at this dojo.

With hard work and proper planning Solis Ortus reaps the rewards of a very successful first Open Day for 2017. The team invested their time and envisioned with their creativity a master plan to ensure that Solis Ortus grows into the dojo in Pretoria.

At the Open Day event it was such a goose bump moment to see all the Black Belts doing their special routine to make everyone feel welcome and put them at awe. Sensei Eugene introduced what karate was all about and explained what exactly karate can do for an individual; whether it is Fostering Self-Discipline; Boosting Socialization; Skills Encouragement; Physical Activity; Learning to Set and Achieve Goals or to Increase Self-Esteem; Instilling a Sense of Respect; Encouraging Non-Violent Conflict Resolution; Improving Listening Skills; Developing Teamwork Skills or Improvement in Other Areas of Life.

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All these skills can be enriched, improved or developed by just doing karate. Karate can be a sport or can become a lifestyle….your choice.

After the introduction every age group from the youngest (4 years old) to the oldest (55 years old) showed their skills in plyometrics, katas and kumite. The audience had the opportunity to see how each belt group developed their skills from the beginning to where they are today. Solis Ortus also has specific training methods to enhance focus, speed and power to improve karate skills as the karateka succeeded to the higher belts. These training methods are in a more fun way.

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After all the interest and questions answered, Solis Ortus can feel proud to introduce 50 more karatekas into the dojo. Most of them are white belts….and oh boy….they enjoy every moment of it.

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2017 is going to be a mammoth year for Solis Ortus.

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Welcome to all the new karatekas of 2017!!! May your karate path be prosperous and your expectations glorious. May you all grow into the best you can be; some of you will succeed as Black belts, some of you may not. But always remember “a Black Belt is a White Belt that never gave up.”

“Will it be easy? NOPE! Worth it? ABSOLUTELY

Written by: Heilethe Calitz

2016 Year End

And so 2016 has come to an end.

The year-end function and prize giving was held on 2 December at the Magister hall.  And what an evening it was.  The hall was beautifully decorated with Christmas lights, flowing drapes hanging from the ceiling and even a lovely Christmas tree in the foyer.  A flower arrangement (made by the dojo moms) was placed on each of the tables which added to the festive cheer of the evening.

Many, many thanks to the moms and students who spent the entire day breaking their backs and working their fingers to the bone in order to give the hall a magical makeover. A huge thanks also to Pieter for making us a lovely trophy cabinet as well as a stage this year.  Solis Ortus is very grateful to have parents who are willing to step up and get involved and contribute towards making our year end function memorable and enjoyable each year.  Thank you!

 

It was a very busy year at Solis Ortus this year.  Two very successful club grading’s, 11 successful Shodan grading karate-ka and the first ever Coen Memorial Challenge, are to name but a few of the highlights of the year.    During the prize giving, each and every student was recognised for their efforts during the year.  Not everyone may have received a medal or a trophy, but each student was awarded a certificate acknowledging either their progress and/or their perseverance and/or their loyalty throughout the year.

 

Recognition was also given to those students who participated in competitions throughout the year, be they JKA or KSA.   Floating trophy’s were handed over to the top achievers in the various categories.

Of course there are also the Solis Ortus awards such as “Most improved Junior” and “Karateka of the Year”.  As a Sensei, I am somewhat proud to say that selecting a “winner” for each category becomes more and more difficult each year, as the number of students and the standard of karate at our club increases each year too!!  Fortunately, I have fantastic instructors who with their opinions and input, assist me in making these difficult choices.

 

The complete list of awards and the respective winners will be posted on the web-site shortly.  Congratulations to each and every student who achieved success in some form or another this year – hard work and perseverance always pays off!!

 

Thanks again to each and every student of Solis Ortus for making 2016 a very successful year.  May you all have a well-deserved break over the festive season.  Travel safe and I look forward to seeing you all in the dojo again on the 9th of January 2017.

 

OSS!!

2016 November Grading

“Grading, 26 November.  Remember to practice your kata’s at home and good luck for your grading!  Oss!!”  These were Sensei Eugene and Sempai Lilian’s final words of advice to each class, over the last few weeks or so.

Well grading day, 26 November, has come and gone and all indications are that the students took Sensei’s advice and practiced, practiced, practiced!!

Each and every student, from the young to the ‘no so young’, from the junior belts to the senior belts, gave their best effort on the day!  More than that, could not be asked for and the proof is in the grading results!  Congratulations to each and every student who passed their grading and have now moved on to the next chapter of their Karate experience.   It is important to continue to enjoy your karate and to still “practice your kata’s at home”!!

As we all know, Sensei Eugene runs a tight ship and true to form, grading day ran smoothly and as per the time schedule communicated to all students and parents.  This is by no means an easy feat as the various grading groups are becoming larger with each grading.

Thank you to each and every parent and student alike for ensuring that they arrived at the Dojo on time and dressed in the correct grading attire.  It was only with the co-operation of our students and parent alike that grading day ran as smoothly and as successfully it did.

A word of thanks too to the Solis Ortus Grading panel.  The panel consists of the senior Karateka (black belts) of the club and we appreciate their time and effort spent in helping, guiding and encouraging the students on the day.

To each of Sensei Eugene’s assistant instructors  ….. a heartfelt “thank you!”  The amount of effort, dedication, attention to detail and patience you put in to preparing the students for their grading does not go unnoticed.   Your commitment to each and every class for the sake of the students is highly appreciated!  Thank you for ‘giving back’ to the club, and for all your efforts towards molding the youngsters into becoming the club’s future top class seniors!

Just as Sensei is very proud of all his students, each student can stand tall and say that earned their belt by means of hard work, sweat and lots of practice (and sometimes tears too).   Solis Ortus is indeed the best club in the province and we have the students to prove it!!

 

OSS!!

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JKA Gauteng North Tournament

JKA Gauteng North Tournament
(Written by Sandy Verreyne)

There is just no rest for all our champion karatekas.  As we finish one tournament we start preparing for the next.

On Saturday, 5 November 2016 we competed in the Gauteng North JKA Tournament as qualifying tournament for all SA JKA 2017 tournaments. 

The tournament was attended by 6 dojos.  Solis Ortus students pitch in the majority and most of our students qualified for SA JKA 2017!  Our sensei and our instructors are very proud of each competitor.

From the photos it is clear that Solis Ortus is a close knit family and without the assistance of everybody, we will not be the best dojo!  This was a serious tournament, but nothing can ever stop us from having loads of fun while we compete.

Looking forward to seeing everybody, including our fellow JKA Dojos at the 2017 SA JKA Nationals.

Cansa Club Event – October 2016

In 2013 Solis Ortus started wearing pink karate belts during the months of October in support of breast cancer.  It is excellent to see that a few dojos have now followed in our footsteps for this worthy cause.

This year was no exception and the students of Solis Ortus wore their pink belt with pride.

It is such a great feeling when young and old unite for the something that so many struggle with.

Solis Ortus is proud to make another donation to CANSA this year.  This will not be possible without the students and the parents.

THANK YOU!

1st Coen Memorial Challenge

The hosting of the Coen Memorial Challenge has been a dream of Sensei Eugene’s for many years.  His dream came to fruition this year on the 22nd of October 2016.  The inaugural event was held at the Magister Hall, the hall which the late Sensei Coen built and at which the Solis Ortus Karate Club has been growing from strength to strength ever since.

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The intention of the Memorial Challenge was not only to honour the memory of the late Sensei Coen but also to afford each Solis Ortus karate-ka some exposure to the competitive side of karate, whilst ensuring the environment was safe, controlled and fun.

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There was a total of 149 competitors and for many it was the first time they had taken part in any form of competition.  Judging by the broad smiles on the competitors faces at the end of the day, as well as the positive feedback received from participants and parents alike, I think it is safe to say that everyone enjoyed the day and so walked away with a new and better understanding of Karate tournaments.

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Even the mini karateka had the opportunity to shine on the day.  The group was well represented, with a total of 14 mini karateka showing off their skills which they have learnt from Sempai Sandy during the course of year.  They all proved to be quite agile and determined and of course the cuteness overflowed.  Many thanks to Sempai Sandy and the “Mini’s” parents alike.

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From start to finish, the day ran like a well-oiled machine.  Very few karate-ka are aware of what goes on behind the scenes in order to make such a day as successful as this day was, and it is only with the assistance of dedicated students and parents, that this was possible.  Thank you to each and every volunteer who gave of their time and effort.

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Thank you Sensei Eugene for affording all your students the opportunity to participate and we look forward to seeing the Coen Memorial Challenge as an annual event on the Solis Ortus calendar.

 

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OSS!

Written by Cathy Van Onselen (currently purple belt)

National Grading – 15 October 2016

The Journey to Shodan;  1st Dan; Black Belt

(written by Sandy Verreyne)

You walk into this dojo, everything is strange and you are in awe of the black belts, the seniors, the “giants” who teach you how to move, how to stand, discipline, respect and ethics.  Your jaw is on the ground and you wonder if and when you will be where they are now.  You put your white belt on and your karate journey starts!

Each of our journeys are different.  Some of us started karate at a young age, stopped mid-teens and only returned to the dojo many years later. Some started karate in their mid-teens and have persevered through all the obstacles you face as a teenager.  A few came from other dojos seeking something else, something better and others only started in their thirties, or forties and are now the inspiration to so many of us.

2016 delivered the first ever group of 10 Solis Ortus students to attempt their Shodan grading.  Grading is scheduled for Saturday, 15 October 2016.  As the group is too big to train during our normal class times, our sensei graciously gives up his time to teach us at his home.  And so the Saturday morning early trainings sessions are booked and we get split into 2 groups.

Saturday, 2 July 2016 is a cold, very cold, winter’s morning.  The sun is out at 7 when the first group starts with their intense technical training and preparations for Shodan.  We start with the technicalities of a kekomi geri.  We concentrate more on the cold that cuts through our gis and jackets than we do on the kick itself.  The whole group spent about 2 months perfecting the kekomi geri and it was worth every pick up, butt cramp and tired legs!!!

Two weeks prior to grading we dig deep and we put all our efforts into perfecting everything.  We train 4 times a week and we work together as a group.  We are united in our effort to make it to the top and make our dojo and sensei proud.

This group of 10 consists of a variety of people.  4 females and 6 males.  The females range from 15 to 52 years of age and the males 15 – 54 years of age.  We all have the same collective goal that we are working for, but for each this goal means something else.  We all deal with different life issues and we do the best we can to prepare for grading.

Saturday 15 October 2016 came way too soon.  Are we ready?  Yes we are!  Are we nervous?  You can bet your auntie we are!  We start the day with a 3 hour pre-grading course from 09:00 – 12:00.  We have a 45 minute lunch and then we start the grading.  A group of approximately 50 student from all over the country are grading to shodan and get called out in groups of 4.  They start with the youngest and work their way up from there.  On the panel is some of our idols and our own Sensei Eugene is leading the grading, so you definitely want to give it more than your absolute best.

Out of our group of 10, three of our fellow karatekas sadly did not pass the grading.  Luckily, the door to your shodan never closes after a fail because we will all stand behind them again when they attempt the grading in May 2017.   And their silver lining in this situation is that they already know it all and they know what is expected of them, now they have ample time to perfect every movement, placing of the foot and distance of the punch!

Out of our group of 10, seven successfully graded to Shodan.  Congratulations guys, now our real training starts.

When you put on your white belt your journey starts, yet, so we all thought.  But then we get to wear our black belts and we know that the journey only starts now.  All that we thought we knew, we now know that it was only the tip of an enormous ice berg.  Now we have the opportunity to really learn, to be taught by our countries best and occasionally attend a seminar hosted by Japan’s best.

Thank you Solis Ortus for providing the space to grow.  Thank you Sensei Eugene for sharing all your knowledge with us and giving us the tools to succeed.  Thank you to our families and friends and fellow karatekas for motivating us, believing in us and supporting us.

ONE WAY ….JKA!!!!!

 

Haldun Alagas

Training with sensei Haldun Alagas was, as usual, hard but very rewarding and very inspiring. It is a privilege to have a world champion give class here right in our dojo, something not many dojos can say. Sensei Eugene spent an entire week in Bloemfontein training with this phenomenal fighter for approximately 4 hours a day. Haldun Alagas comes from Turkey, and was world champion 3 times. There were two classes, the first for beginners and intermediate, and the second was for the more advanced students, who already have a career in tournament fighting. Classes were given by both Alagas, and by Bahattin Kandaz, and the translator was Sait Ucan.

Haldun Alagaş (November 16, 1970 in Izmit, Turkey) is a Turkish karateka competing in the kumite -70 kg division. He is multiple world and European champion and ranks first at world list in his weight division Inspired by the martial art scenes in Battal Gazi films of Turkish actor Cüneyt Arkın and films of Bruce Lee, he began with karate sport in Izmit in 1982. His first official fight was at the 1986 Turkish Karate Championships, where he became champion in the youth category.

He had the red belt.

With gaining success in sports at international level, karate became a lifelong passion and a life style for him.Alagaş competed between 1994 and 2005 for Istanbul Büyükşehir Belediyespor‘s newly formed karate team. In 2006, Alagaş transferred to Kocaeli Büyükşehir Belediyesi Kağıt Spor Kulübü in his hometown, where he was until 2010.

Currently, he is coaching karateka in the Kayseri Büyükşehir Belediyespor

All three Instructors have beem doing karate and competing for about 35 years or more, and are brilliant teachers. Bahattin Kandaz is 48 years old but can still deliver a potent kick to the face with incredible speed and presision that made the students gasp in awe. Sensei Alagas gave a lot of individual attention which was an honour to all who received it. Thank you to sensei Eugene for organising this  very exciting event.

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Creches to Dojo visits

Creches to Dojo Visits

If one looks carefully, once a month there are the pitter patter of new little feet running around with the Solis Ortus Minis. These are the the Karate Kids from the  5 creches we are currently teaching at.

This new move is to show these little upcoming karatekas who exactly they belong to..the family of Solis Ortus.

We have had a total of 3 visits so far, with another one planned for the month of October. The Karate Kids will also be joining the Solis Ortus Minins in the Coen Memorial challenge. This should be a lot of fun, both for the officials and the students alike.

The creche kiddies really enjoyed the activities, and many returned for more.

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Tournaments 2016

This year has, as usual, been a very busy one as far as tournaments are concerned. Our karatekas who compete at these tournaments experience a totally different side of karate, namely sports karate.

Sports karate in this country is managed by KSA (Karate South Africa), which, in turn is managed by WKF (World Karate Federation) worldwide. Many styles of karate affiliate their competitive student with these organisations, such as our style, JKA (Japan Karate Association)

Sports karate has its own rules and is a totally different ball game to the traditional karate (JKA Organisation) our students train at the club. Sensei Eugene does try to keep a balance between the two, something only a few clubs do, and manage positively. Sport Karate and Club Karate compliment each other, and each should be respected for what it brings to the table in terms of improving a karate athlete’s abilities and performance.

Sports karate has two sections, Kata and Kumite. The Katas performed are usually very high level kata, and Free fighting, where points are awarded for execution of well targeted punches and kicks. Control of contact is applied, however the higher the age, the more contact is allowed.

Both styles, traditional and sports karate have different conditioning needs namely:

JKA’s goal originally is to “incapacitate an adversary with one blow”, whereas sport karate’s goals are to score points by tagging an opponent or to avoid being tagged/hit.

At Solis Ortus our primary foundation is the strong Budo of JKA, Shotokan.

Budo is a very broad term meaning  any discipline that has, for the practitioner, become a way of life. Budo, thus refers to post-1600 generations of Japanese fighting systems based on former arts, but which emphasize “do” — personal, ethical and spiritual development as the ultimate goal of training.

JKA is our Budo, and sports karate is a sport.

Our youngest competitor is 5 and our oldest is 52. In  our club alone we have produced about 15 to 20 protea members.

So far, in 2016 we have competed in the following tournaments:

JKA Traditional Tournaments:

JKA Gauteng Provincials: 11 and 12 March 2016

SA JKA Nationals: 20 and 21 May 2016

Sports Karate (also called All styles) Tournaments

Tshwane Trials:  6 February 2016

GKF Champs  : 19 / 21 February 2016

KSA U21,seniors, veterans and disabled  :  4 / 5 March 2016

KSA children, juniors and kadets :  18 / 19 March 2016

KSL Bulls challenge : 16 April 2016

Eagles Challenge  :  14 May 2016

KSL Lions challenge  :  18 June 2016

Kanazawa cup  :  30 April 2016

Gauteng Open Championships  :  7 May 2016

KSA Opens and Elite  :  15 July 2016

Walk a Mile  :  23 July 2016

Samurai Cup  :  3 September 2016

Sakura Kai Karate  :  3 September 2016

Legend of Legends  :  17 September 2016

Champions Challenge  :  17 September 2016​

 

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OPEN DAY SUCCESS

Solis Ortus had its annual Open day on Saturday, 30 January 2016 at the Garsfontein dojo.

Preparations for this day started 2 weeks ago with various karatekas and parents helping to distribute pamphlets at all the schools in the East of Pretoria.  Thank you each an everyone for your help and ideas.

During the open day our current Solis Ortus students help us to showcase what they can do and how and what we teach them.  Thank you students, for being to eager in helping me always.  I always say I have the best students and I mean it.

Our seniors assisted in talking to all the new parents and potential new student.  This year we invited all the new students to join us on the tatamis for a fun session and this proved to be very successful.  Please help me in welcoming all the new students that will start during the course of February.

Remember, you were once where they are now.  Respect them and help them to become just as good as you are.

OSS

Solis Ortus Open Day

KARATE IN PRETORIA. A SPORT FOR LIFE.

Karate is also more than just a sport, it teaches you about respect, discipline, character, leadership, humbleness,concentration and many more.

Doing all this while having alot of fun.

Come to our  Open Day and see for yourself why we are the most unique karate club in Pretoria.

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CANSA – RELAY FOR LIFE

19 September 2015 marked the calendar for Solis Ortus’s second participation at the CANSA Relay for Life.  We got our sponsor through Tristan and Sandra Botha and was able to enter two teams.

The week leading up to the relay spoiled  us with beautiful warm weather and we were positive that the 2015 Relay will not be as cold as the 2014 Relay.  Boy, were we surprised on Saturday to wake up to overcast coldness.  I think the cold brings us all together, because as a result of the cold weather, we all huddled under a cazebo, sitting close together, chatting, laughing, crying for the loss of the springboks, sharing the jokes that instantly followed the loss.  We walked the walked, provided some entertainment to the crowds and spent quality time together!

Thank you to each and every person who joined us and shared in the special moments!

Haldun Alagas

The Turkish karate trio of Haldun Alagas, Bahattin Kandaz and Sait Ucan first visited South Africa in 2010 to present its week long training camp.  The goal behind these training camps are to expose our athletes to the coaching of these top coaches in order to prepare them to reach their goals. The Turkish coaches are brilliant in movement and agility and their fighting combination is advanced.

Since 2010 Sensei Eugene Oosthuizen have not missed a single training camp hosted by Sensei Haldun Alagas.  Sensei Haldun Alagas is a Turkish karateka who is a multiple World and European champion.

On Saturday, 18 July 2015 Sensei Eugene Oosthuizen, together with Sensei Morgan Moss invited the Turkish karate trio to present a training session to juniors and seniors at the Solis Ortus dojo in Garsfontein.  Karatekas from all over Gauteng attended this training session.  Some found it so informative that they participated in both senior and junior sessions.  This is testament to the fact that our athletes are hungry to learn and willing to work hard.  We all enjoy receiving the world knowledge of our Seniors, Mentors and Champions.  It is always a privilege when we have them on South African soil and they are willing to share their knowledge with us.

On the day of the training sessions it was clear that all who arrived for the session was very excited to start and to learn.  The hall was packed and soon it became very hot inside on a chilly winter’s day.  Karatekas were split up into lines and groups to make movements easier.  All over you could see the concentration on each and every person’s face, each one trying their best to master a technique and do the best they can.  It is wonderful to see young and old put in all their effort because they love their sport so much.

The karate community is a strong one, and we are all connected and united in the sport.  It makes our Sensei very proud to share moments such as this one with so many athlete and he looks forward to sharing many more such moments with you all.

Karate Instructors Camp

They say exciting or bad experiences make for good stories. Well, that’s how the saying goes and true to the saying that’s what happened. Solis Ortus Karate decided to have an instructors camp, called a gashuku. Sensei William was the team leader because sensei Eugene had an unforeseen other event. Sensei Adrian and sensei Lilian, sempai Annerien and Heilieth went on the camp. Like a bunch of school teenagers we all huddled into the Fortuner Toyota.
I spy with my little eye something starting with ….. Was the main game in the vehicle on our way to Ribeeks kloof near Middelburg, about an hour and a halfs drive from Pretoria. Laughing all the way there we arrived to a breath taking amazing sun set on the 20th Feb 2015.
Friday night was spent getting to know each other a bit better round the camp fire.
Saturday morning we were up at the crack of dawn. We went  driving up the mountain trail with the 4×4, sensei Lilian we realized is a bit scared of heights. Saturday afternoon sensei William sat us down for a serious discussion about what we need to do in our karate Solis Ortus club. Then we played a prank on sensei Lilian when we all got dressed in our Gi’s and woke sensei lilian up from a deep afternoon sleep. We then proceeded to take some
beautiful photos in our gi’s in various poses and on various objects.

We climbed a part of the mountain near by and posed for pics which
came out amazingly well. Being late afternoon we noticed that a generator was on near the pool which was becoming annoying. The generator was located about 50 meters from our chalet and housed inside a small stone house. So sensei Lilian and Adrian decided to go switch off the darn thing. That’s when things became dangerous
which makes for a good story. Apparently what sensei William and the rest noticed was a change in engine noise followed by loud shouting to the tune of “run its gonna blow,” followed by sparks and smoke. Then Lilian and Adrian were running for cover. Adrian fell and lay motionless for a while in the dark and Lilian grabbed him up and ran towards the camp site. At this stage sensei William was visibly distraught and came running down shouting ” fix it fix it!”
I guess the flee fight or freeze mode “thingy” works different in every one. Its strange how quick things can go wrong. All we wanted to do was switch the darn thing off. Anyways a long story short we called thee owners of the chalets and they sent out a maintenance guy who fixed it.

Sunday morning we actually practiced proper karate mostly fun stuff like jumping flying kicks into the dam giving the word “dam duiker”, a new meaning. And so a good time was had by all making for a great weekend. Moral learned was don’t try to fix something that isn’t broken and run like hell when sparks and smoke is near a 50 liter diesel tank. Oss.
Written by Adrian Bonafede

Open Day 2015

Solis Ortus in Pretoria had its Open Day this past Saturday, 24th of January 2015 and once again, it was a great success!

We had the privilege of showcasing some our most talented students and our training and teaching techniques to current and prospective students.

We are looking forward to a lasting relationship with our new students and we, as instructors, are equally excited about sharing our knowledge with you.

Thank you to everybody that made the day a great success!

Oss!

Solis Ortus Team

Continue reading Open Day 2015

Year End Function 2014

On 5 December 2014 Solis Ortus had its annual year end function to present all the students with something small for all their hard work and dedication during the year.  Little did I know that I will get the biggest “award” on this evening.

My Senior students surprised me with a video dedicated to my late father and founder of Solis Ortus, Coen Oosthuizen.  I was also presented with a special cake depicting my Karate time line.  It was all very special to me and I can not ask for a better dojo.

Once again I would like to extend a sincere thank you to every student and parent for all that you do for Solis Ortus.  Without you our dojo will not be this successful.

OSS

Continue reading Year End Function 2014