In Phoenix, Arizona, you will find many paths in your journey to become skilled in lightsaber combat…
Initiate Path (Age 8 and up):
This class is designed to introduce your younglings to the Three Basics of saber training: Force, Knowledge, and Discipline. A Student must graduate from Initiate to join the Apprentice class regardless of age. Special consideration will be given for students under the age of 7 on a case by case basis.
- Force: Students learn Courtesy, Respect, and proper safety of contact using basic strikes and blocks.
- Knowledge: Students learn what to practice to graduate from Initiate to Apprentice.
- Discipline: Students learn and Confidence through practice of the Shii-Cho Sparring Set, a two-person form designed to keep to the basics
Apprentice Path (Age 10 and up):
Students will learn everything on the Initiate Path as well as train toward becoming a Knight. To graduate a student must pass the five Trials. A Student must graduate from Apprentice to join the Knight class regardless of age. Special consideration will be given for students under the age of 10 on a case by case basis.
- Trial of Skill: Learn and demonstrate the First Four Forms of Saber Combat.
- Trial of Courage: Perform a demonstration for an event outside the academy.
- Trial of Flesh: Organize a demonstration for an event outside the academy.
- Trial of Spirit: Show leadership with fellow students by choreographing a saber duel.
- Trial of Insight: Write an Essay of their Path and what they have learned on their way to becoming a Knight.
A student that has passed all Five Trials must purchase or build their own saber to use in their duels.
Knight Path (Age 10 and up):
This Path includes everything in the Apprentice Path and more. Knights follow three Specializations. A student must complete all three Specializations in succession to graduate to Master.
- Guardian: A Guardian focuses training on honing martial skills. Guardians continue with any of the first four Forms and begin study of Form V: Shien and Djem So. Guardians must perform 10 or more demonstrations at events to graduate with a blue saber.
- Consular: A Consular begins their study toward Form VI: Niman. The Consular seeks diplomatic measures in spreading peace and harmony by training others . Consulars go into the community and create demonstration and recruiting events. A Consular must graduate 10 or more Apprentices to Knight to graduate with a green saber.
- Sentinels: Students who have added value to the community become Sentinels. Sentinels will also explore the exotic weapons of the first six Forms as well as hand to hand combat. Sentinels learn how to recruit other students. A Sentinel must recruit 10 or more Initiates or Apprentices from the events they organize to graduate with a yellow saber.
- The Path of the Dark Side: those who do not wish to follow the normal path and instead choose the Way of the Sith and the Dark Side of saber combat will follow their own path. The Dark Side path is mysterious and often dangerous- For this reason only one student to one teacher is allowed in private instruction.
- This path takes total devotion and hard, rigorous study and discipline. It is not a path for casual players who simply do not wish to be . This path requires much more time and energy than any other. It is the road less traveled and has little in the way of guide posts.
Students are approved by Masters usually at the time of their graduation from Apprentice, but can be “turned” at any time during their training. Dark Side students get private instruction, but are required to learn Form VII-Juyo as well as the other six Forms to graduate. It is then that they will become Jendar’i or “Dark Lord”- the equivalent of Knight.
Masters Path (Age 18 and up):
This path is for those wishing to dedicate themselves to a formal training regimen and eventually becoming a Certified Instructor and Group Leader in both United Martial Arts and Phoenix Saber Academy. Includes Training on the Master’s Apprentice Program within United Martial Arts. Always be a student- constantly learning, refining, and being educated by the universe. In the process attaining personal excellence, and achieving one’s fullest potential to reach their greatest success.
About Master Alan Venable
Master Alan is Head Instructor for United Martial Arts under the tutelage of Master Michael Leone, Master Chris Dining, and Master Jason Campbell. He has had the privilege of learning from other Masters and Grandmasters throughout the years, from Grandmaster Jiang Jung Sung Baek and Grandmaster Pan, to Master Jerry Cook and Master Ping Zhen. In practice of 5 Animal Kung Fu, Baguazhuang (Sun Style and Emei Style), Tai Chi (Yang Style), Xing Yi Chuan (Sun Style), Wing Chun (from Yip Man), and Northern Shaolin Long Fist (from Yue Fei). All traditional styles. He also practices Chinese 18 Weapons Forms, Japanese sword, and exotic forms such as Eight Drunken Immortals, Northern Preying Mantis, Iron Monkey/White Ape Boxing, Kwe Ding, Northern Eagle Claw, and others. Currently Master Alan is in process of earning Black Belts in Judo, Ju Jitsu, Aikido, Sho-rei Kenpo Karate, Pistol, Rifle, and Shotgun under the tutelage of Chief Instructor Jerry Dibble and Soke Harley “Swift Deer” Reagan.
Where to find them