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Sophomore offers kenpo karate lessons

This semester, sophomore Matt Maurer started teaching kenpo karate at the student Rec Center. Kenpo karate falls under the category of martial arts, and is mostly seen as a self-defense system. According to kempokarate.com, the origins of kenpo karate come from the Southern Chinese kung fu and other martial arts. Maurer, who has a black belt in kenpo karate, started training six years ago. Teaching at the University gives him not only the opportunity to keep up with his knowledge, but also to share his passion with others. ‘I was a member of a sparring group on campus,’ he said. ‘However, I do not only want to fight. I want to bring the philosophy of kenpo karate to other people.’ During the training sessions, his students will learn different techniques and use them during sparring and sparring drills. Junior Kyle Ulrich is one of the students enrolled in the class this semester. So far, he said the class has learned a few punches, kicks, lots of blocks and a few jujitsu throws. ‘We also learned the first kata kempo,’ Ulrich said. ‘This is like a series of moves in a row, and we’re starting to spar.’ Ulrich has practiced martial arts for about 8 years and said it has not really changed him at all. But martial arts isn’t only about technique, Maurer said. It also helps control emotions. ‘If you feel a fight is going to happen, walk away,’ Maurer said. ‘And if you cannot walk, run. Only if there is no alternative, you should fight to leave the situation.’ All students are welcome to train with Maurer. He only expects every student to be willing to learn. ‘If people already have a history in martial arts it could be difficult,’ Maurer said. ‘But if you are willing to learn, everyone can learn the kenpo karate techniques.’

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