Mrs. Guccione, Mr. & Sensei Guccione

The Canton Zen Do Kai (ZDK) Martial Arts Club is devoted to learning weaponless self-defense.  Skilled instructors teach the mental and physical aspects of empty-hand combat skills, mostly oriental in origin.  Student’s progress from beginner (white and yellow belt) thru intermediate (green) to advanced (brown and black belt) skill levels by practicing a well balanced series of physical exercises and movements which involve every part of the body.  One skill is built upon another.  As the student progresses physically, equally important attitudinal adjustments follow: A student gains confidence, calmness in the face of threat, persistence and stress reduction.

Master Campos & Northern NY Zen-DoKai

We believe that anyone can learn to defend him/herself and learning is self-paced.  We do not have a militaristic

    teaching style. The instructors allow each student to progress at the individual’s natural pace.  Students are

    encouraged to progress but never intimidated into any activity.


Taneesha & Katherine 6th Kyu students

A class lasts between 60 and 90 minutes and follows this format:

Mrs. Guccione & Mrs. Langdon


BASICS: A typical class begins with blocking, punching and kicking without an opponent, starting slowly for warm up

  and becoming more intense and aerobically challenging.  Instruction on how to improve the techniques and increase

  speed, power and agility occurs throughout this phase.  The rest of the class time is typically devoted to one or two 

  of the following:

KATA: a ritual series of combinations of empty handed blocks, kicks and blows which mimic an imaginary fight against

  multiple opponents.  Intermediate and advance ranks also practice kata with ancient oriental weapons such as the

  sai, bo, and sword.  Aerobic demand is light to intense.

Mr. Gladding performing a Kata

SPARRING: highly controlled and regulated punching and kicking against an opponent.  Students wear safety gear. No

 striking or kicking below the belt, to the back, to the throat or eyes.  Light contact above the belt to the body is

 allowed.  No face contact is permitted.  Moderate to intense aerobic demand.

Mr. Gladding Sparring Mr. Langdon & Mr. Huxel


SELF-DEFENSE: practicing blocks and counter moves against a wide variety of attacks.  Students are taught to defend

  against attacks starting with simple one and two hand grabs and progressing as the student gains skill to defense

  against punches, kicks, chokes, and locks. In addition to practicing self-defense in the training area, we sometimes

  practice defending ourselves in stairwells, confined spaces, seated at tables, in vehicles and even airplanes.  Advanced

  ranks also practice defense against edged weapons, clubs and guns and against attacks from multiple opponents.

Sensei Guccione disarming a knife attacker

  A class typically ends with STOMACH EXERCISES and/or ZEN MEDITATION.