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Graham Slater Training History

Shihan Graham Slater 7th Dan is mainly a teacher of teachers having run many seminars / workshops both locally and around the globe. His instructors and training partners reads like a ‘Who’s Who’ in the martial arts world. He mainly shares his physicals skills on seminars he is also very much in demand for the business side of running schools. His insurance, multi media, IT, marketing and risk management knowledge is also sort after as this directly helps school owners grow their clubs and make them more profitable.

Martial Arts Articles  - 

1 Graham Slater Interview Fighting Arts Magazine  2 Graham Slater Interview Blitz MagazineGraham Slater - Fighting Arts Magazine Shotokai Karate Story 4 Graham Slater Fighting Arts Magazine Bringing Martial Arts Together  4 shin-jun-interview Shaolin Monk 5 Martial Arts Australia - History 6 Graham Slater - Media Credits 7 Graham Slater - Training history 8 The Value of MAA Membership


Graham started his martial arts training in England in 1973 inspired by Bruce Lee and the need to defend against the ever increasing, violence by gang warfare on the streets of Liverpool, UK. He started by learning from books and soon tracked down a local Goju Karate school to train at. A number of Graham’s friends formed a ‘fight club’ where night club buddies practice their skills. Some people trained boxing, karate, judo and all would mix it with their  street savvy skills. Twice a week they would make the back room of an old church shake and coat the floor with blood, but they would all learn a lot.

After immigrating to Australia in 1975 he commenced training in Kyokushinkai Karate, Ken Shin Kan and Kickboxing until 1979. The hard training and contact was the idea training regime at that time, having come from the hard streets of Liverpool. He then started training in Shotokan / Shotokai (Harada sensei’s style) until 1982 when he changed to mainstream Japanese Shotokai Karate directly under Sensei Yasuo Ikeda and other notable masters directly in Japan. Graham has had extensive training in Japan after many visits enabled him to be graded 2nd Dan 1983, 3rd Dan 1986 by Sensei Yasuo Ikeda.

On another memorable occasion in 1992 Graham had the privilege and honour of being graded by the Shotokai Karate Japanese Honbu with Motonobu Hironishi chairing the panel. This status gave Graham the unique position of becoming a second generation student of Master Gichin Funakoshi (Founder of modern day karate) through Hironishi Sensei and the third generation through Ikeda Sensei.

Graham has continually trained none stop from 1973 and had further gradings by a visiting Japanese team in 1994 to 4th Dan and 5th Dan in 1997 by an industry panel and 6th dan 2002 by Hanshi Tony Jackson. His last grading was in 7th Dan in 2015 under the legendary Sensei Stan Schimdt whom he has been training for the past 14 years privately.

Graham delivering a flying side kick to fellow student Ian Edwards on one of the many beach training sessions in the Shotokai Karate training days (circa 1988).

Graham made another change in his training around 1993 when his Japanese teacher died. He had already dabbled in several other arts but now made a concerted effort to become a mixed stylist incorporating Aikido, Jujitsu, Shintaido, Tai Chi and Qi Qong. Not being content with the training in Australia, Graham sort to move out of his comfort zone and travel extensively around the globe learning from many teachers. From 1982 to present day Graham has trained and taught in England, Netherlands, France India, Dubai, Malaysia, USA, Thailand, China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Fiji, Vanuatu and over ten times in Japan.

In 2006 Graham became a consultant to the Shaolin Temple – China and opened a Martial Arts College under the guidance of the Temple where he coordinated the teaching of the Shaolin Kung Fu Monks to the general public. Graham was in charge of bringing out the top monks from the temple to teach in Australia managing and studying with them for three years.

Graham pictured below with Shi Yongxin Head Abbot Shaolin Temple - China

Graham has combined all of his skills and knowledge into his unique style of martial arts called Reikijitsu Kai an art from he created in 1998. The name represents – respect, natural energy, technique application and formulates the elements of Graham’s training and philosophy. The style has a natural healing method of training drawing from Chi Kung, Reiki, Shiatsu, Meditation along with the external combat techniques of karate, aikido, ju jutsu and kung fu.

Pictured below Sensei Kazunobu Maekawa and Sensei Yasuo Ikeda 1988 on a visit to Graham's Dojo.

Now as a 7th dan he spends his time working with many instructors from around the world exchanging ideas and developing the IMA / MAA. He presently communicates with over 5000 school owners every month (via email, phone and by physical meetings). This does not leave much time to teach general students hence his focus is just on working with instructors / masters.

He is now fully engaged in his role as Chairman of the International Martial Arts Alliance and a Director in Martial Arts Australia, Producer for Kapow TV, and a Broker for Martial Arts Insurance. Graham’s duties are extensive and varied working with many school owners, private companies and government to help protect and grow the martial art industry.

He has matched up his martial arts training with formal studies in Sports Coaching, Fitness, Financial Services (Licensed Authorised Representative / Broker for Insurance), Training & Assessing, Media, Business and Marketing to give him the skills to better run martial arts schools and associations. He has also created strategic alliances with other industry leaders and innovative companies to share / exchange ideas and products to better serve the martial arts community.

Graham believes in keeping his’ foot in’ so to speak by teaching locally and visiting schools around the world to look at new and innovative ways of running them. He has been fortunate enough to experience and learn many arts over the past five decades teaching a blend of elements from karate, aikido, jujutsu and shaolin kung fu in general classes and in specialised seminars.

The most important role for Graham has been to garner more recognition for the martial arts industry. The majority of the general public see martial arts as just another sport (football/cricket) competing for their participation. His strategy has been to help improve the image, qualifications and professionalism of instructors so the general public will have a very positive experience when they first walk into a martial art school, thus choosing it over other activities. Over the past 25 years Graham has been negotiating with many large companies and has obtained special group discounts for a number of products and services. With his work many instructors now enjoy lower prices on insurance, software, websites, courses, video production, mentoring and much more.

Outside the Shaolin Temple - China where he spent  a number of weeks working with the Monks and top athetes from around globe on the K-Star - Kung Fu TV Series.

He also assists in the direction and production of a series of TV Shows having cut his teeth on a popular DVD magazine developed by the IMA called ‘Interactive Martial Arts’ a video magazine also called the IMA Emag. This has now developed into a TV Show that has become very popular. Graham was also co-producer on KStar Action Star Series 2006 in Australia and China. His latest production is Action Star Australia 2018 (8 part series) currently finished production and is in the editing process. In 2019 MAA launched a new Business Magazine – ‘MA Bus News’ to fill a void in industry communication and is up to its third issues (Sept 2019).

Graham is always taking on new projects that will help the industry one being to development and facilitate new programs that help instructors to become more qualified in the eyes of the government. By working with Registered Training Organisations the IMA has been able to offer nationally recognised qualifications such as Sports Coaching (specialization martial arts). Graham as a qualified Senior Sports Coach and Trainer / Assessor has been helping deliver these programs all around Australia. The latest evolution of instructors has been the Australian Martial Arts Coaching System – ‘AMACS’ which are available and accessible to anyone via online delivery with 3 levels to select from, follow the links for more details.

Sensei Stan Schmidt 9th dan, Graham' mentor below - who he has been training with for more than 14 years and graded him with an international panel to 7th dan.


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