Sensei Karen MacDonald
Chief Instructor & Club Owner – GODAN 5th Degree Black Belt
What brought me to the Martial Arts was an 11yr. shy insecure little me. Both my sister and I started at the same time. In fact we were the first females in Bolton, Ontario, Canada to start Martial Arts. Our picture was even in the local paper!We started our Karate journey in 1983 with the enthusiastic guidance of Sensei Ian Fung, may he Rest in Peace. I have so many fond memories of Sensei Fung. He was such a powerhouse and he really brought that very thing out in me. I am forever grateful and will forever miss him. Sensei Ian Fung laid our foundation and my sister and I were both hooked. We would take weekly trips to train with Shuseki Shihan Woon-A-Tai in Toronto. Our traveling time included quizzing each other on how many movements were in each kata and seeing how much Japanese we could remember. So many fond memories of the Toronto dojo! Here is where I found my spirit and intensity. Shuseki Shihan and his wife were major inspirations to me growing up. Both of them fed my young soul with so much goodness.
6yrs. later I was honored to receive my Shodan with Shuseki Shihan Woon-A-Tai and Master Okazaki. I trained with Sensei Frank Corbett through College. My training slowed down until moving to Northern California in 2000. The first thing I did when I moved was find a dojo, it was my piece of home even though I was in a different country.
In fact, I became the Dojo Administrator and Instructor for Sensei Marty Callahan at ASK Karate in Santa Rosa, CA. At the ASK dojo I got the opportunity to train with Master Yaguchi, Sensei Cathy Cline, Sensei James Field and Sensei Hiro Okazaki. All of these amazing instructors have given me such gifts in my Karate career and I will forever be grateful.
In 2003, I earned my Nidan and my Sandan in 2007 with Master Yaguchi. By this time I was teaching on my own in the local Community center.
After hearing news from home Shuseki Shihan begun IKD, it did not take me long to find home again. I joined the IKD family in late 2012. Bitter sweet testing for Yondan in early 2013 with Shuseki Shihan Woon-A-Tai. Full Circle.
Yes, I have competed with Karate successfully Nationally and Internationally, yet what draws me to Karate is the Spiritual Side to the Art. My training and teaching has taught me so much about myself and life. My training has gotten me through some pretty tough times. The mental and physical focus that is required to succeed in Karate is exactly what you need to succeed in your everyday life and it is still the main reason I teach today. The benefits are endless and young people today need a healthy outlet. Focusing the mind and body will help get anyone through the many struggles they may encounter in life.
My involvement with the Martial Arts for Peace Program began in 2003. The program specifically teaches young people about Peaceful ways to manage bullies, by Nationally and Internationally acclaimed author Dr. Terrence Webster-Doyle. I became a Certified Martial Arts for Peace Instructor in 2003 and focused on bringing Karate to schools in my area and teaching it as part of Health Education.
I took the big leap and finally opened my own dojo in downtown Petaluma in July of 2016! 2016 was a scary but, exciting year for Petaluma Karate Club. We are doing well with now 31 students strong! I couldn’t have done it without the amazing unconditional
support of Shuseki Shihan Woon-A-Tai, who continues to inspire me and keep my spirit and intensity “Sensei Ian Fung strong”! Osu!
- Over 36 yr. training in the Art of Shotokan Karate
- Hold the rank of Godan (5th degree black belt)
- Hold the title “C” level Judge
- Certified Martial Arts for Peace Instructor (MAP)
- Certified Zen Yoga Level 1 Instructor
- Teaching Karate to kids and adults for over 18yr.
- Been in Business for 16yr.
- International Competitor
- Inducted in to the IKD Hall of Fame For “Instrutor /Head Coach”