The House of Shotokan Karate Academy, that is located just down the street from us, has been on a winning streak in recent competitions against Mexico and they hope to continue that trend on Saturday. The academy is hosting its annual international karate championships at the Belize Elementary School auditorium in Belize City. Other local martial arts schools as well as Mexican karatekans will be participating in a wide range of categories along with the usual kata and kumite competitions. Shihan Ray Kelly of the House of Shotokan told News Five today that are well prepared and expect to dominate their Mexican counterparts once again.

Shihan Ray Kelly, Master Instructor, House of Shotokan Karate Academy

“We’ve invited karate studios from here in Belize, locally and also we have invited schools from Mexico. And so far we have three to four different schools from Mexico that have committed to bringing their students and competitors to compete in this event at Belize Elementary School tomorrow morning.”

Delahnie Bain

Ray Kelly

“It’s an annual event, how many years have you been having this?”

Shihan Ray Kelly

“This competition will be our second year that we have hosted it. Last time Mexico came over and, as many in Belize know, the karate students from House of Shotokan did a fabulous job in defeating them. This time they’re coming back a little stronger to regain their championship but that’s not going to happen.”

Delahnie Bain

“What are the areas that you will be competing in; the areas of martial arts?”

Shihan Ray Kelly

“Well there will be several areas of martial arts. There will be the forms competition [kata], which is open martial art forms where competitors would come in and depending on their style, they would conduct their form accordingly. And that is from children age range from three years old all the way to adult. There is another area that’s combat; the kumite or the fighting and that is governed by a different set of rules. There will be also what we call specialty; brick breaking, board breaking. There will be weaponry division, there will be musical forms, musical katas, self-defense techniques. It’s an array of open martial arts events. The location is going to be at the Belize Elementary gymnasium. The starting time—the opening ceremony will be from ten a.m. and it will continue all the way through to about five p.m. and tickets can be purchased at the door for general admission. We hope that Belize public does come out and support this event because again, it brings the idea of martial arts growing and developing within the country of Belize.”

Delahnie Bain

“What’s the cost of admission?”

Shihan Ray Kelly

“Cost of admission is five dollars for children and ten dollars for adults.”

The House of Shotokan has had several wins against teams from Mexico; they are now working on bringing in teams from the United States to step up the level of competition.

Channel 5