Karate/Self Defense Camp being held at Langdon Activity Center

The Langdon Activity Center (LAC) will undergo a transformation on the weekend of August 8 as it goes from gym to dojo.

Posted on 8/1/15

By Melissa Anderson

The scene in the LAC will resemble that of a classic kung fu movie as the teachers or sensei of the UND Hisshou Karate Dojo bring their method of martial arts to the Langdon Area.

“We are rich in culture, we will be doing what is traditional in the Japanese culture, such as bowing, paying respects to the founders of karate, and encouraging their way of life,” Dustin Wagner, the event organizer and student of the sensei coming to the LAC, said.

This is the second time that such a camp will be held at the LAC. The first camp was held in July of 2012 and this second camp came about as a result of local interest being expressed to Wagner.

“That got me thinking about setting up another camp. The camp has a lot of good points. You learn some good basic self-defense, it’s a great workout, and we are a very close-knit community, so you have this “family vibe” environment,” Wagner stated.

The two instructors coming to the LAC for the camp are Sensei (teacher) La Royce Batchelor and Sempai (Senior Student) Phillip Regan who teach and assist at the UND Hisshou Karate Dojo in Grand Forks.

Sensei La Royce is a second degree black belt who has been training in Shotokan karate for 12 years and teaching for six. She is the main instructor at UND Hisshou Karate and has won four consecutive International Shotokan Karate Federation titles.

Sempai Phillip has been training in martial arts for 15 years, just recently earning his black belt in Shotokan karate after six years of training. He also holds a regional and national rank in the Men’s Black and Collegiate Men’s Black.

The recommended age for participants attending the camp is 13 or older. The instructors have that limit in place for a few reasons. The first reason is when Sensei LaRoyce teacjes classes in Grand Forks, she has parents stay and watch the kids’ because it’s good to have the parents see what exactly their kids are learning.

Also, kids usually under the age of 13 tend to lack the attention span/discipline needed for the instruction of karate. They also may or may not understand that this is a combat art and may try manuevers at home without appropriate supervision.

“The values are best delivered and maintained with parental support,” Wagner said.

The clothing recommended for the camp is workout clothes.

“You will be getting hot and sweaty,” Wagner said.

Shoes for the camp are not important, as the training takes place barefoot. Before walking into the gym of the LAC, shoes and socks will be taken off.

“Movement wise, as long as you can walk with no problem, everything will come with time when training,” Wagner said.

Many types of martial arts will be taught at the camp. Kata, which is a detailed choreographed pattern of movements practiced either solo or in pairs. Kihon is the cultivation of technique, and is often considered the study of a single sequence of techniques not typically seen in kata.

“This cultivates many skills as well as versatility. It aids in the creation of a technique vocabulary useful in altercations,” Wagner explained.

The last technique is Kumite, which literally translated means “grappling hands” and is one of the three main sections of karate training, along with kata and kihon. Kumite is the part of karate in which a person trains against an adversary using the techniques learned from the kihon and kata.

Overall the camp will be  very educational and fun for participants.

“You can learn to properly punch, block, kick, etc. when facing danger, in the means of self-defense. These classes will teach not only how to do many techniques but also the applications of these techniques,” Wagner stated.

The camp is from 9 a.m. on Saturday, August 8 till 6 p.m. with a potluck supper being held at the Mt. Carmel Recreation Area. The camp resumes at 11 a.m. Sunday, August 9 until 6 p.m. The cost for the camp is $20 for the two days or $10 for one day.

“The more the merrier. We are a non-profit organization. Any profit we do make will go towards the dojo I train at to help improve the facility,which will help increase the academic learning for other students,” Wagner said.

For more information, questions, comments, or concerns  please contact Dustin Wagner by email at or call or text him at 701-370-5003.