The instructors at Classic Karate are D.R. MacGregor and his wife Kelly. D.R. is a retired Army officer and Kelly is a career development practitioner. Together they own and operate Kinnaird Farm https://kinnairdfarm.ca/ where the dojo is located.
“We want to share the physical and mental benefits that come with the study of our art. This is a learning community: a group of people who utilize their own skills and interests to discover more about Karate.”
D. R. MacGregor
D.R. MacGregor holds a 7th Degree Black Belt in Hakutsuru Kenpo; a 5th Degree Black Belt in Shorin-Ryu Karate-do; and, a 5th Degree Black Belt in Ryukyu Kobudo. He has travelled to Okinawa and throughout North America to train with some of the most highly respected martial arts masters in the world. “My instructors were the students of the great Asian grand masters of the 20th Century. I trained with their own teachers whenever there was an opportunity.” This includes classical masters such as the late Richard Kim, Sensei; the late Shugoro Nakazato, Hanshi; and Fumio Demura.
D.R. began his Karate training in 1987 under Conroy Copeland, Sensei. The next year he moved to Guelph and began training in Shorin-Ryu under R.S. Willis, Sensei and his senior black belts. D.R. soon started assisting and eventually became an instructor at affiliated schools in Fergus and Kitchener.
After resigning as Head Instructor of Willis Karate Studio in 1998 he founded Classic Karate by taking private students. The following year the dojo was established in Acton. It was voted Acton’s Favourite Martial Arts four years in succession. In 2008 the dojo was moved to Ottawa; and, in 2014 the dojo relocated to Leeds and the Thousand Islands.
In 2008 D.R. began training with George Alexander, Hanshi. This website’s photo gallery shows them training together in Okinawa at the respective dojo of Morio Higaonna, Hanshi and Tetsuhiro Hokama, Hanshi. Alexander has done much historical research and translation work and written numerous articles and books on the martial arts. He was formerly a professor of East Asian History at the State University of New York. Alexander has produced over 200 martial arts instructional, documentary and fitness DVDs and has been featured in over 60 martial arts instructional DVDs.
“I’d been looking for a teacher like Hanshi Alexander for many years. It’s hard to find a practical martial artist who is also a true scholar of the arts. We need to be exposed to different concepts and new methods – both to advance our knowledge; and, to prevent ourselves from stagnating. Teachers must be life long students,” says D.R.
Kelly received her 1st Degree Black Belt in 1996. A former instructor of aerobics and fitness kickboxing, she specializes in kata (forms).
An alumnus of Willis Karate Studio, Kelly was the weekend instructor for a number of years at that school. She has taught all ages and has an interest in learning styles. As well, Kelly enhanced the Little Dragons Program and a variety of other children’s activities at the school. Kelly was also instrumental in reviving the dojo newsletter.
Kelly has provided formal mentoring to Black Belt candidates and informal mentoring to others associated with the martial arts. While her husband was away with the army, Kelly ran the school; eventually assisting the senior students to take over the Acton dojo while he was on tour in Afghanistan. Many students are pleased to know that Kelly’s calligraphy talents adorn their achievement certificates issued by Classic Karate.