Wednesday, March 30, 2011

New Hope gets a karate school

 By Charlie Sahner

Well it took long enough, but New Hope finally has a dedicated karate school or, in this case, dojang of its own.

In recent years, karateka had to seek study in nearby towns like Lambertville and Buckingham, but now locals can receive bona fide martial arts instruction at the Logan Square Shopping Center in a large, new facility adjacent to New Hope Beverage (itself a worthwhile destination, with a large selection a value priced imported, domestic and micro-brewed beer).

New Hope Karate offers traditional Tang Soo Do, mixed martial arts, kickboxing, self defense and even classes taught in Spanish. Also of note is the Parent's Night Out program, which allows moms and dads the opportunity to drop off kids aged 5-12 for a few hours of fun, including karate, movies and other supervised activities.

Owner and head instructor Robert Reynolds is no stranger to the area or martial arts community. He ran Reynold's Karate and Fitness for many years in Lambertville, and was known on the tournament circuit as a formidable fighter and champion. Tang Soo Do is a Korean martial art that places a somewhat greater emphasis on hand techniques than the popular Tae Kwon Do, and also derives much of its kinetic power from hip rotation, not unlike its Japanese and Okinawan counterparts. This makes the art an easier fit for those students coming to train with previous experience in styles like Shotokan and Goju-Ryu.

Reynolds also enjoys an excellent reputation as an instructor for children, an important membership and financial component for any successful dojo, but this latest offering is more well-rounded with the addition of specialized adult classes, like those featuring the highly effective Israeli Krav Maga self defense system.

Those interesed in seeing New Hope's new martial arts facilty and viewing some "Little Ninjas" (and not-so-little ninjas) in actiion are welcome to view classes in the morning (around 9:30 a.m. to noon) and evening (4:30 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.) Reynolds says the first week is always free if one choses to sign up, and I'll take him at his word -- this guy's the real deal.

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