Shihan Marius Conjana is a very quiet gentleman but once he was in a court of law defending himself after clobbering three thugs with nunchucks and severing them with a Samurai sword.
Veteran journalist Tarzan Mbita looked uncomfortable and squirmed as Shihan Conjani recounted this incident two years ago after attending a sports awards ceremony at Khayelitsha’s Look Out Hill.
“Did you cut them with a Samurai sword? ” Mbita asked with his eyes wide opened. It was violent. Conjana said he saw his life coming to an end because the three thugs were strong and attacking him.
“I dismantled them one by one and by the time police came it was very bad. They had violated me by trying to steal my belongings. In court I staged my own self-defence and was found not guilty,” he said.
Though he is not proud of this incident, Conjana says karate, which he fell in love with 25 years ago, saved his life many a times.
“It’snot only about muscles and delivering Bruce Lee kicks, karate teaches discipline, it opens you up and develops psyche. It’s not about fighting… it is about inner strength.”
Conjana, who turns 40 this year, has dedicated a quarter of century to karate and wants to leave a lasting legacy.
His journey has not been a walk in the park. In 2006 a freak accident nearly left him paralysed when a forklift drove over his foot and broke his ankle into two. Doctors told him he would never walk properly again let alone take part in any sport. “They put two screws in my ankle and after a successful operation
I slowly went back into training. I then competed in many competitions and I still function fully,” he enthused.
He plans to put an end to his competing days so that he can focus “on multiplying other Mariuses”.
A firm believer in the adage “a child in sport is a child outside court” Conjana has started recruiting young children to join his Gugulethu Josui Kaikan South Africa.
“If your child is being bullied or you think she or he lacks discipline, fitness or have a focus disability, bring them to me, I will help immensely.
Josui Kaikan South Africa is an NPO rendering karate and self defence services to the communities of Gugulethu and its surroundings. Contact Shihan Marius Conjana on 071 409 7824 or firstname.lastname@example.org