Queer Knife Fighting
Saturday, Oct 26th, 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Sunday, Oct 27th, 5:00pm - 7:00pm ($15-45 sliding scale)
Learn to knife fight in an inclusive, friendly atmosphere that centres the LGBTQ+ community. This monthly workshop series with Valkyrie coach Kaja Sadowski will give you a foundation in the movement, techniques, and tactics of knife sparring, and allow you to grow your skills over time. Beginners are welcome and no prior experience is necessary. Classes are designed to give both newcomers and returning students a fun challenge, and are open to students of all physical abilities.
Please note that the Saturday and Sunday sessions have the same content, and are provided on separate days to give students more attendance options.
Fight Like Buffy
Sunday, Nov 3rd, 1:00pm - 5:00pm ($25-55 sliding scale)
Do you have what it takes to be The Chosen One? Join stage combat instructors Sylvie La Riviere and Ryan McNeill Bolton as we fight our way through the Hellmouth. Learn Buffy’s tricks and techniques to keep yourself safe from vampires, demons, and so much more. Plus recreate a Buffy-style fight against the Forces of Darkness!
No prior experience is necessary, and stakes will be provided.
Big Gay Sword Day 2: Sword Harder
Sunday, Nov 16th, 1:00pm - 5:00pm ($50-100 sliding scale)
Big Gay Sword Day is back, and it's bigger and better than ever! Four instructors, 6 hours of lessons, and all the swords and fun you can handle!
This year, we're offering four blocks of 1.5-hour sessions. Each block will include a beginner-friendly physical workshop on the training floor, and a small-group conversational seminar in our lounge area. You can spend the day sweating and learning new ways of moving your body, curling up on a couch and digging deep into an exciting topic with your fellow students, or mix-and-matching both approaches.
This event is intended to celebrate the contributions of the LGBT community to our arts and to create an inclusive place for everyone to learn, and students of all genders, identities, and experience levels are welcome.
A Weekend with Jess Finley
Saturday, January 25th & Sunday, January 26th, 10:00am - 5:00pm ($200-300 sliding scale)
Jess Finley is one of North America’s top researchers and instructors of German swordplay and wrestling. She is the author of Medieval Wrestling: Modern Practice of a 15th Century Art, and has presented her research at the prestigious International Congress on Medieval Studies. We're handing over a small group of lucky students to Jess for the weekend, and letting her dig deep into the topics that she's most passionate about. You'll get to work on both longsword and wrestling, and gain a better understanding of the relationship between armed and unarmed combat in the German system. Expect a high-energy, exciting two days with lots of tasty material for beginners and experienced students alike, and many opportunities to work directly with Jess.
Space is limited. Sign up now!
Kasey Keckeisen is an experienced police officer, SWAT team leader, and SWAT training coordinator. He holds 6th degree black belts in Judo, Jujutsu, and Aikido, and a black belt in Taiho Jutsu. His school, Keishoukan Dojo, offers traditional martial arts training in Kyokushin Karate, Yoshinkan Aikido, and Jujutsu alongside practical self-defense. He combines decades of traditional martial arts training with the practical perspective of a high-level use of force professional, and understands the importance of play and improvisation to any tactical training environment. Kasey was a lead instructor at Violence Dynamics Vancouver 2017, hosted by Valkyrie WMAA.
Randy King is a former club and personal security specialist, with many years in charge of security for bars, events and private clients. He is the founder of KPC Self Defense, a Senior Instructor with the World Wide Martial Arts Association, and a Conflict Communication facilitator. Randy is a certified Progressive Krav Maga Full Instructor, and has been coaching everything from taekwondo, to arnis, jujitsu, karate, and self defense since 2009. He is the star of Randy’s Rants on YouTube and the co-host of the Talking to Savages podcast. Randy was a lead instructor at Violence Dynamics Vancouver 2017, hosted by Valkyrie WMAA.
F. Braun McAsh
Renowned historical swordsman and fight director F. Braun McAsh has spent over 40 years studying and teaching Western European sword work around the world, including serving in the military. Braun was incredibly influential in the early days of the now thriving WMA community in Vancouver. He used his formidable martial skill to inform his translations and interpretations of historical manuals, and helped to popularize the art through his work as an actor and fight choreographer on series such as Highlander. Braun has presented on German longsword and modern knife defense at Valkyrie WMAA.
Rory Miller is a seventeen-year veteran of the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office Corrections Division. He has served as a deputy, sergeant, tactical team member and leader, mental health specialist, trainer, and investigator, and traveled to Iraq as an advisor to the Iraqi Corrections Service in 2008. He has trained in Judo and Jujutsu since the early 1980s. In the self defense world, he is best known as the author of Meditations on Violence, one of the most influential books on violence dynamics. He has been a full-time teacher and writer since 2011. His other publications include Facing Violence, and Conflict Communication. Rory was a lead instructor at Violence Dynamics Vancouver 2017, and returned for a small-group weekend workshop in August 2018.
Maija Soderholm is one of the official lineage holders of Visayan Style Corto Kadena and Larga Mano Eskrima and an authorized teacher of the Yizong School system of Bagua Zhang, Xing-Yi, and Tai Ji. Maija is a formidable martial artist and the author of The Liar, The Cheat and the Thief, which focuses on the role of deception in swordplay and other weapon work. Maija's material and teaching approach has had a substantial influence on our approach to knife work in particular, and she has taught workshops at Valkyrie WMAA in 2015 and 2018.
Guy is one of the foremost researchers and instructors of historical Italian martial arts, founder of The School of European Swordsmanship, and a prolific author of swordplay and physical training texts. Guy's work on the martial arts treatises of Fiore de'i Liberi, Ridolfo Capo Ferro, and Philippo di Vadi has been enormously influential in the Historical European Martial Arts community, and forms the base curriculum of schools around the world. He visited Valkyrie WMAA in 2017 to teach a weekend-long workshop series on Italian longsword.
Dr. Tammy Yard-McCracken is an internationally-recognized Krav Maga instructor, Conflict Communication facilitator, and professional counselor. She is the owner and chief instructor of Kore Krav Maga in Ashburn, Virginia. She has worked with the Women in Federal Law Enforcement National Conference and the Crossing the Jordan Human Trafficking Recovery Program. She holds a doctorate in holistic psychology and a bachelor degree in education, and brings a wealth of academic and technical training to her teaching. Tammy was a lead instructor at Violence Dynamics Vancouver 2017, hosted by Valkyrie WMAA.