burger@saska.co.za | Tel: 012 804 1885 | Cell No: 083 239 4919 | Fax: 0866 933 207

WHAT IS THE SHIHAN-KAI?


The following duties or qualifications

 • Masters' Committee
 • 4th Dan or higher
 • With Technical expertise
 • Protecting the style of karate
 • Administrative body
 • Decision making body
 • Senior Instructor
 • Karate Club Owner
 • Karate Sport Referee
 • Dojo code of conduct
 • Grading Official
 • By invitation only

HANSHI KOOS BURGER - 9th DAN

(African Style Head and Chief Instructor) Hanshi Koos Burger was born on 27 Apr 1943 and started karate in 1963. For the past 56 years he practiced karate for most days of the week, ceaselesly perfecting the budo way. He trained with many renowned masters which included: sensei's Kase, Shirai, Kanazawa, Enoeda, Yamaguchi, Tanaka, Tambourini, Kawazoe, Naito, Kasuya, Koga, Kawamura, Sugimoto, Asai, Higaonna, Ozawa, and De Mura.
More about karate career of Hanshi Koos and questions for Hanshi Koos email Hanshi K.Burger
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Sensei Laurent Gaston Bellegarde - 6th Dan

Sensei Laurent was born in 1962 in France and moved to South Africa in 1970. He started karate in South Africa with his son and daughter under Hanshi Koos Burger. He is currently a 6th Dan and runs a karate club in Brackenhurst, Alberton where he teaches together with his son Sensei Nicholas who is currently a 4th Dan. They teach both children and adult students. Sensei Laurent and his son still compete at national and international levels.
He was selected as the national coach for the seniors team for the World Union of Karate-Do Federation (WUKF) world championships held in Brazil in 2005, in Spain 2007, in Ukraine 2009, in Italy 2011 and Romania 2013. He is also the Vice President for WUKF in Africa and holds the position of Chairman for SASKA. Sensei Laurent's achievements at the world championships was obtaining a 3rd place in Spain 2007, 2nd place in Ukraine 2009, 2nd place in Italy 2011and 2nd place in Romania 2013.
When asking Sensei Laurent what his feelings are about Karate, his reply was as follows:
"I feel that the art of Karate is beneficial to all children and adults as it bring confidence towards our life and the challenges that we face. Young or old we all have fears that we may come across in life. Karate helps and trains us to make the best decision be it combat, self defence situation, or any other decision we may need to make. It helps you to think, plan quickly and effectively.
Karate is also Beneficial to ones mental and physical health and improves the core strength of the body.
I see Karate as a way of life; it teaches you self-defence, confidence and discipline. I feel that people who practice the Art of Karate become achievers and live life in a positive way. I believe perseverance is the pathway to success".
"My best achievement in life is the fact that I have had the opportunity to train with my son and we both obtained Medals in the Karate World Championships."

Questions for Sensei Laurent Gaston Bellegarde
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Sensei Riaan Jansen van Vuuren- 6th Dan

Sensei Adriaan started his karate in South Africa career in 1982. Sensei Adriaan was graded in 2014 to 6th Dan. He was graded to Shodan in 1994,Nidan in 1997,Sandan in 2000, Yondan in 2004 and Godan in 2008 by hanshi Koos Burger. Adriaan started a karateclub in1997 in Elspark, Germiston under affiliation of SASKA. In 2002 he immigrated to California and started a dojo in Orangevale under affiliation of SASKA. Adriaan currently trains and teaches karate four nights a week at his dojo in Orangevale
Questions for Sensei Riaan Jansen van Vuuren
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Sensei Nicholas Bellegarde - 5th Dan

My karate career began in 1989 when I was just five years old. After having just started school, I decided that I wanted to begin taking karate classes too. Now, more than 2 decades later I can honestly say that I have never looked back and karate has become a way of life for me. Currently I am a full time partner at the Cobras karate club in Alberton, where I teach twice a week with my father, Sensei Laurent Gaston-Bellegarde. I enjoy teaching this magnificent art to people of all ages, and I believe that all these years of teaching have instilled certain morals and values within me, for which I am well respected today.
I have competed at various World Championships over the last 10 years and my highest national and international achievements to date, are as follows: I achieved my Protea Colours in 2002 when I was selected as part of the official South African Team to represent the country at the WKF World Championships held in Novisad, Yugoslavia. On an international level my highest achievement to date was winning a bronze medal in the Senior Men's Shotokan Kata division at the 4th WUKF Seniors and Veterans Karate World Championships held in Lignano, Italy during May 2011.
Over and above teaching karate and also competing, I have refereed at many local, provincial and national tournaments. I became a member of the SASKA Shihan Kai committee in December 2008 after being awarded my Yondan (4th Dan Black belt) by our style head, Hanshi Koos Burger. I was awarded 5th Dan in 2105 by Hanshi Koos Burger.
My word of advice to aspiring Karateka out there:-Train! Train hard! And if at first you don't succeed then train harder and let karate become a part of your life, like it has mine.
Questions for Sensei Nicholas Bellegarde
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Sensei Gerrit Zaayman - 5th Dan

Sensei Gerrit Zaayman started karate in 1973 under Shihan Koos Burger who was 2nd Dan at the time. Sensei Gerrit achieved Shodan in 1981. Sensei Gerrit was one of the co-founders of SASKA in 1991 and served as vice-chairman for 5 years.
Sensei Gerrit’s first dojo was Riviera Karate Club followed by Wonderboom Shotokan Karate Club and currently Budo Shotokan Karate Club in Dallas, Texas in the United States of America.
Together with Hanshi Koos Burger, Sensei Gerrit managed to train with various prominent karate masters such as Taiji Kase, Hiroshi Shirai, Masahiko Tanaka, Tetsuhiko Asai, Hitoshi Kasuya, Hirokazu Kanazawa, Masao Kagawa, Patrick Tambourini, Stan Schmidt, Eddie Dorey and others.
Sensei Gerrit’s primary focus is to master and develop budo karate by also studying other martial art forms such as Goju Ryu karate, Kyokushin karate, Wing Chun Kung fu and Jeet Kune Do.
Sensei Gerrit was awarded 5th Dan in 2017 by Hanshi Koos Burger and was appointed to the SASKA Shihankai in 2018.
Questions for Sensei Gerrit Zaayman
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Sensei Ilze van der Merwe - 4th Dan

Sensei Ilze started her karate journey at the age of 10 in 1991, at Hanshi Koos Burger’s Dojo in Pretoria. In her own words ”From the moment I walked in, I knew that this will be a journey for life. I was received with the energy of belonging, joy and respect. My Karate journey has grown into a passion from the heart, and it has taught me so many valuable life lessons over the years. Life lessons that reflect our 5 Principles. It taught me to seek perfection in myself and everything I do, to be faithful to my path, to respect others, their views, values and journey, to be calm within myself (refrain from violent behaviour) and through all, endeavour.”
She has competed in various club; SA championships and International Championships from a very young age and she has indeed grown into her journey to constantly seek perfection through hard and continuous training. In her early years of being a black belt Shodan, Nidan and Sandan the standard of her karate is so good that she already received invites to train in other Karate Associations. She assisted in many SASKA competitions in the organising and liaison and in the role of a judge as well as a senior referee in SASKA National Championships. In 2018 her childhood dream came true when she achieved two Silver Medals in the 7th WUKF World Championships held in Dundee, Scotland for Female Veteran’s Shotokan Kata and Seniors Team Rotational Kumite. She has also completed in several Drakensberg Gashukus as well as in other Gashukus.
Along with her continuous journey in competing, she believes in keeping a healthy balance between competing and true Budo Karate. She is currently a 4th Dan Instructor (currently preparing for her 5th Dan ), teaching Children and Adults of all ages . She shares her passion with her husband Sensei Callie van der Merwe, and they are Dojo Heads of both Helderberg Shotokan Karate and Rondebosch Shotokan Karate in Cape Town. They represent SASKA in the Western Cape. She also fulfilled the role of Liaison Official within SASKA.
She is a very humble person involved in Kids Kicking Cancer where "The goal is to empower the children through martial arts and breathing techniques, and through this decrease the physical and emotional pain that they experience."
She has been selected as one of the SASKA Shihan-Kia members in 2019.
Questions for Sensei Ilze van der Merwe
THE LITERATURE ARTS AND THE MARTIAL ARTS CANNOT BE SEPERATED