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Lisa Croft - Exercise with meaning

I had studied ballet and dance as a young girl, but I was always interested in martial arts and did not know which martial arts club to join. Then as a freshman at LSU, I saw a demonstration performed by the LSU Shotokan Karate Club that seemed magical to me. I wanted to know this magic. I instantly switched from the art of ballet to the martial arts.

When I graduated from LSU, I returned to Metairie where I was very fortunate to be able to continue training at LKA with Sensei Takayuki Mikami, the chief instructor, who is also well respected and renowned throughout the world. Sensei T. Mikami is in direct lineage from the style’s founder. T. Mikami trained under Masatoshi Nakaymama who trained under the founder, Gichin Funakoshi. I feel so very fortunate to have had the very best traditional Shotokan Karate training at LKA from Sensei T. Mikami who I consider a Living Art.

I always hoped that my children would share my love of karate. My son, Roman, age 8 started training karate in the childrens’ class at age 7 with Sensei Doug Walsh and Sensei Cathy Jarushi. They are both excellent teachers. Roman looks

forward to his class and says it’s a lot of fun. Karate training cultivates great attributes for children in ways of discipline, respect, perseverance, confidence and friendships. Plus, I’ve always wanted a Karate Kid.

Shotokan Karate is a traditional art form that is physical and spiritual. Its exercise with meaning and the magical part is that you can defend yourself. As a small person that gives you a confidence and an awareness that carries you to all facets of your life both at your work and personally. Unlike an exercise machine at the gym, karate is mindful. Now that I am older, I appreciate the health aspect in which it alleviates your daily stresses and helps keep you very healthy. Karate is a great workout for your entire body, mind and soul.

(Lisa has been studying Shotokan Karate for over 30 years and holds the rank of Nidan, or 2nd degree black belt.)

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