About WKU | Western Karate Union
WKU Western Karate Union started with seven founder member clubs. Bristol, Burnham and Highbridge, Chipping Sodbury, Colchester, Clevedon and Oldmixon and Uphill and Rheindahlen. Since then we have grown to 17 clubs with over 800 members, in areas such as Kent, Essex and Jersey.
The founding club instructors range in grade from 4th to 7th Dans, all with many years of experience in karate.
As well as qualified and experienced English officials, WKU currently has one European and two British officials. We carry member to member insurance, with all instructors covered for professional indemnity and vetted via the CRB procedure. Members are required to hold a WKU Western karate Union licence which is renewed each year. This entitles the holder to compete in contests and courses organised by the WKU.
WKU is open to all styles of karate and is a not-for-profit organisation with any proceeds being put back into the work of the association.
WKU follow strict guidelines in all aspects of equal opportunities and welcome all people to train and compete with students starting from the age of five years.
Child protection is monitored by our appointed Child Protection Officer Robert Smith 7th Dan, and two assistants, Kevin Barrett 6th Dan and Maxine Baker 3rd Dan. All club instructors within the WKU are encouraged to attend regional Child Protection courses, with local authorities and those run by other sporting bodies. We currently have 42 instructors and assistant instructors CRB registered.
What we do
Set up to promote the study and practice of Karate, the WKU Western Karate Union organises karate competitions, tournaments, courses and events. Members work at local, national and international levels. The WKU regulates safe and structured training, licensing and examination and certification of karateka using the traditional karate Kyu and Dan grading system.
The WKU has a fantastic record of achievement competing at all levels locally, nationally and internationally. Within the club membership we have many fighters who have fought for England, thanks to the experience and teaching of our chief instructor Alan Flook 7th Dan. Our students’ success is reflected in the many gold, silver and bronze medals and trophies collected each year.
WKU are members of the English Karate Federation, recognised by the World Karate Federation.
For the very latest read our tweets at www.twitter.com/Western_Karate
- What can Karate training give me?
- Confidence, self esteem and a level of fitness to your own ability – not that of others.
- What do I need to buy or prepare before I start practice?
- First sessions tend to be T shirt and loose fitting trousers or track suit bottoms, club instructors usually have or certainly can get a Gi (white suit) for you.
- Do you have tournaments?
- Yes. The WKU have two tournaments a year but we are also invited to many more, including national events, run by the English Karate Federation – our governing body.
- How long does it take to get a black belt?
- How long is a piece of string? It depends on ability and how many times you train per week. Generally as you train and move up through the grades you will attend courses and train more times each week than a beginner would. I would estimate someone training a minimum of twice per week, attending courses as often as they can could be ready after about five years. Don’t be fooled into these “Get your black belt in six weeks” type of clubs, that black belt is only any good for holding your trousers up!
- What ages can train?
- From five years upwards.
- Are your instructors CRB checked and hold Personal Indemnity insurance?
- All WKU instructors across the country have been verified through the CRB system and all instructors are PI insured.
- I have some more questions / I am ready to join a club / I want to touch base, what is the number to call?
- For further information you can contact the WKU Chair Andy Gunton 7th Dan, on 0117 985 9764.