Karate students say No! to drug and alcohol abuse

The Hikari Institute, a Hawaii non-profit corporation and federally tax exempt organization, is dedicated to promoting Karate and preserving its history in Hawaii. See: Hawaii Karate Articles. We operate the Hawaii Karate Museum, the Hawaii Karate Seinenkai, and the Hikari Dojo.

We are very happy to sponsor the KARATE-NO! Program, which was made possible, in part, by a grant from Mayor Mufi Hannemann's Task Force on Drug Use. It is our hope that all Karate students will say No! to drug and alcohol abuse. Karate is part of a healthy lifestyle in which students take responsibility for their actions. The self defense techniques of Karate are used as a last resort only. Karate students apply the principles of the art in their daily lives to avoid violence and promote peace.

  Statements By Sensei, Students, And Our Mayor
Newest statement:
C. A., Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Well, we all know that drugs and alcohol are bad. Drugs and alcohol harm the people around you. First of all, your kids might become drug babies. Next, your kids are going to think that drugs and alcohol are OK. Also, you are going to be more violent and prone to crime and violence. And if you are a kid and start drugs, alcohol, and gangs, things like this are going to ruin your future. Being in a gang might make you feel good and tough, but you are messing with your future. Remember, if you ever get in that position, trouble -- yes trouble -- will become your best friend."

Newest statement:
Natasja G., Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu


It's plain and simple, drugs are bad for you. But if that has been said a countless number of times, why are so many teens into it? This is the million-dollar question that has been thought about for many years. Maybe it's because of peer pressure, or family issues, or they just want to fit in. But really, there is no specific answer. We will never know why people do drugs.

What we can do is try to prevent the next generation from starting. If we convince the next generation not to do drugs, we will have a much better future."

Newest statement:
Kaimana C., Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu


Once. Just one time, that's all. No big deal, right? But once is all it takes. Once, and suddenly you're hooked. Once and you can't even control it anymore. It's beyond you, only your shell remaining. A shell craving the thing which might ultimately destroy it. Is that what you want?

A good feeling, an escape, a high. They only last so long. Then suddenly you're crashing. Is it really worth it? Do you want to have a short high, even if it means you'll feel worse than when you started? Of course, you'll not be the only one affected. Everyone around you will be hurt by the results of your choice, not just you. Is that what you want? Ask yourself if it's really worth the risk. Think about it. Think before it's too late. It only takes once."

Newest statement:
Ellena D., Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Don't do drugs!

Did you know that drugs and alcohol kill a lot of people? Drugs and alcohol can be very addictive, and that is how a lot of teenagers and adults get hooked on drugs very fast. Teenagers should not take drugs and drink alcohol because they are throwing away their future and family, because their family could have been expecting a lot of good things from their child until they started to make drugs and alcohol an addiction.

Adults should not take drugs or drink alcohol because they can ruin their health with drugs -- because drugs are like a poison to your body and mind! They should also not take drugs or alcohol because if they are raising a family, they could be setting a bad example for their children and could end relationships.

So basically, in general, no one at all should take drugs or alcohol because it can really ruin their lives and set bad examples to younger people. Because, if someone offers you drugs and you try just one or a few, you can't stop after that and it will begin to become an addiction, and take away your body.

Don't do drugs!"

Newest statement:
Willy Erickson, Yudansha
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Physical, mental, and spiritual balance is to me the base of Karate. Using drugs only distorts what you are trying to accomplish and eventually leads to physical, mental and emotional deterioration. Staying drug and alcohol free is a big part of being successful in life and Karate."

Newest statement:
Dexter Chun, Instructor
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Karate Mind, Karate Body, Karate Spirit.

As an elementary school teacher, I wish all of my students could have a chance to Live Karate. Martial Arts can definitely promote mental and physical strength. I believe, our children need a positive influence like Karate to combat negative influences such as drug and alcohol abuse. Many children are negatively affected by drug and alcohol abuse everyday. Imagine if these students were given the knowledge, strength and self esteem to be able to concentrate on positive achievements. Karate is a great venue to help these children achieve their goals.

Live Karate."

Newest statement:
Richard C. Kai Young, Instructor
Janice Craig, Instructor
Richard C. P. Young, Instructor
Reuben Young, Instructor
Forrest Craig, Instructor
Karate Hawai'i - Martial Arts School
Shorinryu Karate and Kobudo

"One of the main goals of practicing Karate is to develop a sound mind and body.

Through serious study of traditional Karate Ways, we dedicate ourselves to become responsible persons contributing to a better violence-free society.

From consistent training, a determined mind is developed to resist temptations to experiment various substances with our bodies.

Any illegal substance and alcohol abuse will result in eventual breakdown of our physical body and psychological soundness. As martial artists, we strive not to deteriorate.

Keep in mind that illegal drugs and prolonged use of alcohol can severely diminish the quality of life and health condition, as we grow older. Avoid them!

Stay on the right martial arts path, and enjoy life to the fullest."

Mufi Hannemann, Mayor
City and County of Honolulu

"I extend my warmest aloha to the members of the Hikari Institute.

The importance of karate in our community extends beyond its traditional role as an ancient and revered method of self-defense. Karate's philosophy serves as a source of strength and comfort for its practitioners. Just as importantly, the instruction of physical skills and an emphasis on discipline and sacrifice have undoubtedly helped many young men and women to achieve self-confidence and an appreciation of the rewards of their interest in this martial art.

The work of the Hikari Institute is not only passing on this tradition to new generations, but also teaching our young people to avoid the tragedies of drug and alcohol abuse.

The people of the City and County of Honolulu join me in congratulating everyone associated with the institute on their praiseworthy endeavors and in wishing them every success in their anti-drug work."

Joseph A. Bunch, Instructor
Linda M. Bunch, Instructor
Joey Bunch, Instructor
Jeffrey Bunch, Instructor
Hawaii Okinawa Karate-Do Shudokan

"The goal of HOKK is to teach self-discipline, integrity, courtesy, soundness of mind and body with emphasis on self-control. The traditional Karate is designed to help build character and prepare the students for self-defense situations as well as teaching them how to avoid conflicts.

These goals can be accomplished if you don't do illegal drugs and abuse alcohol."

Lee D. Donohue, Instructor
American Karate Kai

"The practice of karate should help us become a better person, physically, mentally and spiritually. The best self defense is simple, Be Nice!

Those that use and abuse drugs, legal or illegal cannot align themselves with the philosophy of becoming a better person through humility, sincerity, and courtesy. The addiction illness does not allow for belief in this type of philosophy. Thus, a student of Karate must avoid the dangers of drug addiction."

Franck Duboisse, Instructor
Undű Gojukai Tilff, Belgium
Goju-Ryu Karate

"Karate-Do is an universal way... when we discovered the Karate-No campaign on the web, we've directly thought that this way of thinking should be universal too! We begun to communicate in Europe with the logos on the posters of our competition, with links on our websites and I must admit that we've had a great welcome of our students. Thank you very much for leting us participate to your campaign against drugs and alcohol damages. I hope that together we'll be able to let our students find this way !"

George Donahue, Instructor
Ryukyu Kichigaikan of New England and New York
Okinawa Karate Do Shorin Ryu Kishaba Juku / Yamane Ryu

"Karate is a powerful martial system. Those who diligently pursue karate training gain a surprising degree of personal mastery physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially over their surroundings and situations. To use that power wisely, and to know when to refrain from using that power unnecessarily, the karateka must have clear thoughts, even under stress. To know when to attempt to control the surroundings and when to just observe, when to intervene and when to avoid, the karateka must first have control of herself. We are fortunate that the wholehearted practice of the art we love is actually one of the best ways, maybe THE best way, for us to develop that self control.

The responsible practitioner must at all times have the capacity to judge situations accurately and quickly and then to take the proper action without hesitation. Even if the karateka has developed this ability with dedicated practice, if the karateka is temporarily under the clouding influence of drugs or alcohol, the capacity to respond appropriately is diminished until the clouds dissipate. Not only is immediate capacity diminished, often the total quality of life is diminished, even after we regain our reason.

Nothing good comes from diminishing ourselves. When we feel that someone could use an ego reduction, what we really want is not for that person to have a smaller, weaker ego, or less ability, but for that person to have a stronger, more secure ego and greater ability to deal with the world. Strength and security, and clear vision, are the keys for all of us to make a better life for ourselves and for others."

Newest statement:
Kim A., Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Karate not only trains the body, it disciplines the mind. It is an activity that makes you appreciate the value of strength, focus, energy, discipline, and life. Those values are the exact opposite of what drugs, alcohol and smoking bring to you.

So many people turn to addictive substances to escape from the world. Instead, they could embrace the world! A healthy, fun training session surrounded by positive people is a great alternative to focusing on problems. When you feel your body work well, have support and companionship from your Sensei and other students, and have the opportunity to learn valuable skills, it brings something very positive into your life. You don't have to be brilliant or athletic or talented. All it takes is the dedication to say yes to positive, life-affirming karate and no to destructive substances and activities. The opportunity is there for everyone .... No drugs or alcohol. No excuses."

Newest statement:
Reyn O., Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"I think drugs are bad because once you try some you get addicted to it and it is bad for your heath. I also think alcohol is bad because when you drink a lot you get drunk and canít control your actions so you might hurt someone. If you were driving after drinking you may end up in a car accident and get hurt.

Thatís why I think drugs and alcohol are bad for people."

Newest statement:
Christine Choi, Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Studies have shown that drinking damages brain cells. Although the brain repairs itself, some normal functions are irreversible and never return. Consequently, an excessive amount of alcohol may not kill brain cells, however, it can impair brain function. In order to stay alert while performing everyday duties, staying active in sports, or driving, you should avoid alcohol.

Don't drink alcohol -- be sober and stay smart."

Newest statement:
Ikaika Chock, Yudansha
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Drinking, smoking and all other drugs are really good ways to shorten your life span! Alcohol kills your organs and slows your brain activity; your reflexes slow down. Some people become violent and hurt others because alcohol or other drugs affect their thinking. Smoking poisons your lungs and body, and makes your breath and teeth nasty to boot. It's not cool or mature; just self-destructive. Other drugs, like ice, kill you even quicker. And any drug will hurt the people around you as the drugs affect you.

There is no good reason to do drugs. Don't start."

Newest statement:
Aaron H., Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"I don't know why drugs and alcohol were created. They are addicting, poisonous and, dumb. If you take any of these or both, you're asking for trouble."

Newest statement:
John D., Youth Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"No Smoking!

I think that no one should smoke because it hurts the people around you. When you smoke and other people inhale it, it is called secondhand smoke. Most people die from taking drugs. So smoking is bad for you and bad for the environment.

So don't smoke!"

Newest statement:
Ana Quemado, Yudansha
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Personally knowing or seeing others who use illegal drugs and alcohol is painful to me. Once a person starts using and abusing drugs and alcohol, they lose control of their life, and may also lose family and friends who care about them. It's not only harmful to the user, but it also affects others -- especially loved ones -- by weakening them physically, emotionally and mentally.

It's just the opposite in Karate. In addition to gaining physical and mental strength, I also leave the dojo each time with valuable lessons on being a better person in many ways, most importantly for others. Choose Karate and defend yourself against drugs and alcohol!"

Newest statement:
Reid Kagemoto, Student
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"In Karate, first and foremost we learn to respect the art itself. We respect our Sensei and our fellow practitioners. For if misused, the art can be deadly and we'd hurt ourselves and others. This respect stems from our respect for ourselves. We don't want to be hurt by others and in turn, we don't want to hurt others. In this regard, we should stay away from drugs and alcohol and its inherent dangers.

Respect others as well as ourselves and drugs and alcohol will have no place in our lives."

Newest statement:
Anthony "Tony" Troche, Instructor
Zen Budo Kai International, Inc.

"The emphasis in Martial Arts is to develop strong bodies, mind and spirit. Respect for self and nature is essential in the development of this concept. In the training of Martial Arts we are taught to harness and preserve life and avoid its destruction. By putting drugs or alcohol in our system an addiction sets in it can only end in disaster.

In the beginning its been said that the dog wags the tail, but once the addiction sets in the tail begins to wag the dog. A myth about drugs and alcohol is if done in moderation it won't hurt, alcohol and drugs can sneak up on you before you realize it has taken over. As Nancy Reagan once coined this 'just say no'."

Newest statement:
Paul Ortino, Jr., Instructor
Dharma-Ryu Dojo's
Okinawa Kenpo Karate

"Martial Arts teach the development of mind, body and soul. The mind must be clear and focused at all times. The misuse and abuse of drugs or alcohol will not allow the mind to function at maximum capacity. The body must be in harmony with the mind. Proper nutrition, a healthy diet and consistent karate training will keep the body strong and dependable.

Drug or alcohol abuse can only destroy what you want to build. The Soul is our connection to our God or higher source. How can we perfect our Mind, Body and Soul if we poison it with substances that will only deteriorate it? Learn to say NO to drugs and alcohol at an early age and the life you save may not only be your own but someone else's as well."

Bobby Lowe, Instructor
Kyokushin Karate

"I have always taught my students to live a healthy lifestyle. We practice hard in Karate to develop a strong mind, body and spirit.

Karate students must be responsible for their actions. One of the most important things Karate students can do is to say no to alcohol and drug abuse."

Pat Nakata, Instructor
Okinawa Shorin-Ryu Karate Association

"Karate is an Okinawan form of self defense and self-discipline. Rigorous training strengthens the body and helps to focus the mind.

Karate students should lead a healthy lifestyle. It is important to eat the right foods, take the right vitamins, and exercise regularly. Drug and/or alcohol abuse are not part of a healthy lifestyle.

A student must always be physically ready and mentally alert. Drugs and alcohol dull the senses and deteriorate the body. For the serious student of Karate, drugs and alcohol should be avoided at all costs.

Karate students must also avoid fighting, and only use Karate techniques as a last resort. Drugs and alcohol has been shown to lead to violence, and should be avoided.

Make healthy choices in your life!"

Mark Tankosich, Instructor
Kawazoi Dojo
Sho-ha Shorin-ryu

"I believe that "the budo way" is about more than just protecting yourself from people who might want to hurt you. Ideally, it involves defending yourself against all things that are destructive or harmful to you. Drug and alcohol abuse inevitably have serious negative consequences, and have no place in the life of a true martial artist."

G. Hisae Ishii-Chang, Instructor
Island Ki
Shotokan Karate

"In his famous book Walden, Henry David Thoreau said, 'If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put a foundation under them.' In other words, that castle is your success. Remember to build your success on a strong foundation. A foundation built under the influence of drugs or alcohol is weak and will eventually fail."

Nayna Tanega Goodin, Assistant Instructor
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"I have had four children. It is important for women and girls to be aware that any drugs or alcohol they consume while pregnant, will directly affect their baby. We should give our children the best lives possible. That means that we should keep ourselves healthy, and avoid drugs and alcohol. Even after we have given birth, we need to set a good example for our children and encourage them to lead healthy and responsible lives.

Karate training is not only for exercise. It also teaches self-discipline -- the self-discipline to avoid harmful substances such as drugs and alcohol."

Charles C. Goodin, Instructor
Hikari Dojo
Kishaba Juku Shorin-Ryu & Yamani-Ryu Bojutsu

"Karate training is part of a healthy lifestyle in which students take responsibility for their actions. A student needs to have a clear mind and healthy body to ensure that Karate techniques are used as a last resort only. A student cannot control himself when he is high on drugs or drunk.

There is no room in our dojo for drug or alcohol abuse."

  Drug & Alcohol Prevention Links

Hawaii Links:
National Links:

  Hawaii Karate Articles

The Roots of Okinawan Karate in Hawaii, by Charles C. Goodin.
Okinawan Mixed Plate: Generous Servings of Culture,
Customs and Cuisine, Hui O Laulima, August 2000.
Hawaii Karate Articles

General articles by Charles C. Goodin:

           Contributing editor of Classical Fighting Arts (formerly Dragon Times).
           Former editor and author for Furyu: The Budo Journal.
           Former special writer for The Hawaii Herald.

We hope that your visit has shown that Karate is part of a healthy lifestyle in which drug and alcohol abuse are avoided. A special mahalo to all the sensei and students who shared their views, to Mayor Mufi Hannemann, and the City and County of Honolulu. We can be contacted as follows:
Charles C. Goodin
The Hikari Institute (Hikari.us)
98-211 Pali Momi Street, Suite 640
Aiea, Hawaii 96701 USA

tel: (808) 488-5773   •   fax: (808) 488-5773
e-mail: goodin@hawaii.rr.com

The spirit of Karate is the Aloha spirit

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The Hikari Institute. All rights reserved.
Graphic artist: Reid Kagemoto.