Conroy Sproul

conroy_profileConroy Sproul 2nd Dan – Kumite Instructor

Conroy has been training in Shito Ryu Karate for 36 years and has held the rank of 2nd Dan since 17th March 2012.

I first started training in 1977 at Stretford Sport Centre in Wado Ryu style of karate. The instructor was Dr Hasim Barmada, a surgeon. He was a traditionalist but the UKKW club was populated by some students who were Manchester University students who competed at high level. There was a split in the UKKW and from this a club was formed at Salford’s Clarendon Recreation Centre. Here the instructors were Greg Baker, Mike Cartwight who formed the basis of a successful team with Charles Longden Hughes.
In 1980 I first trained in Shukokai at Broughton in Salford with Terry Pottage. The reason for the change was that in order to progress I needed to move to a stronger club as the the Wado club lost some of its experienced competitors. At Broughton competition within the club was strong and they were prepared to travel all over the country competing. Broughton were part of the SKU but soon after I joined they left it to form Kenyukai. Kenyukai had great internationals like Joe Tierney, Les Carr, Ralph Maguire and Terry Pottage. Terry was coming to the end of his competing career but kept the Kenyukai association focused on sport karate.
While with Kenyukai I was able to win the British Police Karate Championship four times, represent the British Police, win individual medals in both the English and British Championships and win gold as a member of both English and British team championships.
From the late 1990’s Ian Swain was developing a young competitive team from excellent team from excellent training and this was much more accessible at Sale than Broughton that had started to decline. Kenyukai went through changes and Sale were soon the dominant Kenyukai club. I continued to win medals while training under Ian who was not only a British champion but was also producing students who would win championships and represent England and Great Britain. This continues to happen and I am proud to be involved through coaching in the classes as I no longer compete. Sale became Yanagi Kai and left Kenyukai and continues to thrive. I want to be part of that success that is not just from sport karate but as a friendly  club where students of different ages and backgrounds all enjoy each others company and offer support whatever their ambitions are in karate.