The Shodokan system includes a competitive format of training. Therefore, it is assumed that all Shodokan UK registered club instructors include in their weekly training both kata and randori training with the intention of encouraging some of their members to participate in inter-club, regional, national and international events.
The purpose of the squad is to dramatically increase the skill level of those members of SAUK that are deemed to have the appropriate characteristics and potential to succeed in high-level competition. Competitors who attend squad sessions will benefit greatly through access to high-level instruction and development of their skills, and through training with the best competitors nationally. Developing squad members will also benefit the clubs whose members attend squad sessions, as their skills cascade down.
It is not the purpose of the squad to teach members of SAUK the basic skills required for embu and shiai events. That responsibility lies with each club instructor. Entry into the national squad sessions is by recommendation or invitation only. All SAUK club instructors can recommend some of their members, and the squad management team assumes that recommended players have shown enthusiasm and potential to be considered for selection.
Squad sessions are usually run on the last Saturday of every month. National Squad Training is run every two months in Sheffield, and Regional Squad Training runs every two months also (for the months in between national squad training). The intent is for Regional Squad Sessions to be open, and for one session to be run in the north and one in the south. Please see the SAUK Calendar and Events Blog for updates.