W.S. Bumgarner

W.S. Bumgarner is the head instructor, Dojo-cho, of the Atlanta Giyu Dojo, the first affiliate school of the Giyu Dojo established and directed by Sensei Sukh Sandhu. W.S. is currently ranked a Roku Dan (6th Degree Black Belt) in The Giyu Dojo system. Mr. Bumgarner has spent the last 17 years studying the koryu arts.

W.S. Bumgarner began his training in the Bujinkan organization under the instruction of John Orth. The Bujinkan system consists of nine koryu schools, some of them dating back 1,000 years, which are composed of both armed and unarmed training techniques developed by the warriors of old Japan. The Bujinkan system is led by Soke Masaaki Hatsumi who was a direct student and eventual successor of Takamatsu Toshitsugu. Mr. Bumgarner attained the rank of Nidan, or 2nd degree Black Belt in the Bujinkan organization.

After several years in the Bujinkan, Mr. Bumgarner made the decision to join the Jinenkan organization in order to study more closely with Manaka Sensei, a top student and original member of the Bujinkan system. In 12 years in the Jinenkan he was able to train several times a year directly with Manaka Sensei in the U.S. and Japan. Mr. Bumgarner earned the rank of Yondan or 4th degree Black Belt in 2004. He also became a Dojo-cho or licensed instructor of the Jinenkan organization in 2004.

In the beginning of 2008, W.S. Bumgarner joined the Giyu Dojo and became a Dojo-cho of the first affiliate Giyu Dojo for the express purpose of furthering his martial arts training.

Written by Gabriel Klueh

Why Train Martial Arts?

The simple answer is to live, to live without fear, and to help others live without fear. Fortunately, we don’t live in a time or place where we must fight for our survival everyday. The sense of security that comes from that may be justified, but the reality is that even here in America bad things happen to good people. Even with law enforcement’s best efforts they cannot be everywhere at all times and, in a society founded on individual freedoms, we would not want them to be. Therefore, we must take on the responsibility for our own safety whenever or wherever it is appropriate.

The idea is not to live in a state of constant fear, but in a state of constant preparedness. It is understandable that the average person has become very complacent when it comes to their own safety. The odds of a violent attack are very low. But, the odds of other tragedies are low and yet we take precautions to prevent or minimize their effect. No one would question the rationale behind wearing a seat belt, teaching a child to swim, or having a fire extinguisher in their home.

We are routinely barraged with news accounts of unspeakable crimes committed for what seems to be no rational reason. Average law abiding citizens are left dumbfounded by these senseless and barbaric acts of violence carried out by criminals preying on a distracted and unprepared community. It is less important to understand why criminals commit such heinous crimes as it is to understand how to protect yourself from or even prevent such acts from occurring.
Martial arts programs are not for everyone. But for those individuals who feel they want to make a difference, who aren’t comfortable with the thought of being a victim, then maybe martial arts are for you. Remember that the police only come after a crime has been committed and until they arrive you may be the only one you can count on.