Sensei Bob Rhodes - 8th Dan, KUGB
Bob Rhodes was born in Middleton, Leeds on the 3rd March 1946. He was educated at Harehills School, Leeds and he quotes his early interests a ''Sports in general, swimming, cricket, and football in particular''.
He intended to join the Merchant Navy as a draughtsman, but his paper were delayed and by the time they arrived, he had changed his mind.
In his 'teens he heard about a karate club in Leeds town centre which he promptly joined. He picked up karate quickly, and it was not long before he realised that the standard of tuition left a lot to be desired.
In 1967 at the age of 20, he discovered a club at Armley called the Leeds Shotokan Karate Club. On visiting, he immediately realised that the standard of karate was much higher, and he became a member. His first teacher at the club was KUGB International Team member Ron Wade.
Bob made rapid progress at the club and was soon fighting as a member of the Leeds team at local, regional, and national championships. He was also a member of the victorious British All-Styles Squad which beat Japan to win the 1975-77 World Championships in Los Angeles.
In 1971, he was first selected as a KUGB Grading Examiner and in 1974, he became a full-time instructor of the KUGB. He is also a member of the KUGB Technical Committee, and is also a qualified international referee.
He is noted for his hard dynamic fighting style, and he was strongly influenced by Sensei Enoeda, as can be evidenced from his specialisation of Kuzushi-Waza, that is, the application of foot-sweeps, trips, and throws to defeat an opponent.
He is also noted for his creative applications to Shotokan Kata. A staunch and supportive member of the KUGB, he says he will continue to work for the future development of the organisation.