St. Athan

Venue : The Gathering Place, St. Athan Church & Community Centre, Flemingston Road, St. Athan, CF62 4JH.

Instructor : Simon Dodd

Grade : 4th Dan

Contact Number : 01446 751077 / 07917441138

Times : 

Wednesday 6.00pm - 7.30pm 

Fridays 6.00 - 7.30pm 

Additional: Silver InSport Disability Award. click for more info

Location / Directions:
Click here for directions to the club


View Club Pictures 


Instructor Profile :

After trying various martial arts; including Muay Thai, Tae Kwon Do, Kick Boxing, Judo and Ju Jutsu; Simon realised that Karate was the one for him. 

Simon began Karate in 1997 at the age of 8 in Llantwit Major, just two weeks after the club opened. Simon has been fortunate to  train with many famous instructors, including Aidan Trimble, Steve Wellington, Dave Hazard, and Wayne Otto to name a few.

Simon’s first instructor was Richard Jenkins who taught Simon the basics and provided motivation to continue his training. After Sensei Jenkins left to focus on family life, the club had a few uncertain years with changing instructors.

In testament to Simon’s personal effort, Simon never missed a grading since beginning and after just five years, became the first member of Llantwit Major to become a Shodan in 2002 at age 13, and Nidan in 2005 at age 16. In November 2011, Simon achieved his Sandan (3rd Dan) and completed a lifelong goal, with no view to slowing things down now!

In October 2007, Simon took over as Sensei of Llantwit Major. He is currently working hard to develop his students both mentally and physically and also attempting to generate an interest in karate in the surrounding areas with an aim to bringing in some young blood to give others the time and effort he himself was given. Additionally, Simon is heavily involved with the Vale of Glamorgan Sports Development team, particularly doing work with disability sports, with an aim of bringing in a new generation of karate-ka.

Simon completed a BSc and MSc in Sport Coaching and Development to further improve his knowledge and ability, attaining a 1st Class (Honours) and Distinction respectively, leading to academic publications on martial arts topics; particularly focusing on kata and pedagogy.Simon now acts a guest lecturer at Cardiff Metropolitan University, delivering on a number of modules, and continues to pursue academic martial arts research projects. 

Being a staunch believer that there is no stronger martial art, only a stronger martial art for an individual, Simon encourages all his students to work hard and study their chosen art diligently.

Simon hopes to create a legacy of talented Karate-Ka to continue the works of the W.K.U, in the way he himself is a legacy of Sensei Watson and Kinsella.


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