A martial arts expert who has dedicated himself to the ancient art of the samurai wants to pass on some of that wisdom to youngsters in St Helens.
Sensei David Clare has started running free samurai sessions for local under 15s - including weapons demonstrations and traditional storytelling.
He said: “As well as doing weapons demonstrations, we teach the history of the weapons - where they were made, how they were made and who used them. We also tell stories, set to music, which have been passed down through the ages and teach self defence.
“I’ve been to Japan two or three times and it’s always an eye-opener. It’s a totally different cultural experience to living over here. They even seem to have a different mindset - it’s quite refreshing. Samurais were artists, poets and teachers - it wasn’t all about chopping peoples’ heads off with samurai swords!”
David’s Isami Ryu Karate Jutsu martial arts club started running free samurai sessions on Sunday evenings last September.
Due to a surge in popularity, he is now running two sessions a week until Sunday, December 15. He also runs eight karate jutsu classes - in Eccleston, Parr, Clock Face and Thatto Heath - across St Helens.
David, 44, who is assisted in running the sessions by his wife, Chrissy, also told how he first caught the martial arts bug when he was just nine years old - and has been hooked ever since.
The free samurai sessions are held at the Perth Community Centre in Thatto Heath from 5pm-6pm every Sunday and from 6.30pm-7.30pm at the Thompson Centre at Allanson Street Primary School in Parr. To find out more, go online at: www.irmaa.com