Common Questions

Q: Do I need to Book? 

A: Due to COVID you will need to call us first. But happy after that for you to try it out

Q: Do I need to stay with my children while you train?

A: No, you can drop them off and pick them up when training has finished

Q: What age can my children start to train?

A: From the age of 6

Q: What shall I wear for my first lesson?

A: Loose clothing, tracksuit bottoms and T-Shirt will be fine



There are no contracts and no complications. you simply pay as you train.

JUNIORS (under 18)

£5.00 per session

ADULTS (18 and Over)

£6.00 per session



Welcome to RENSHU, one of Cheltenham's finest traditional Shotokan karate clubs.

RENSHU in karate terms means " training" which implies the hard endless training concept that is Shotokan Karate.

When added together with "practice" (Keiko), it forms the idea of "forging" (Tanren) and "Shugeyo" which is training and practice to "the extreme and for excellence". This is what we are all about as a Dojo.

As a Karate School, we have been around for a while and are a group of traditional Shotokan Karate dojo's based at various locations in and around Cheltenham.

We started our adventures with DOEJAP under the tuition of Simon Shepherd sensei where many of us trained for a number of years. Renshu was formed in 2021 which was exactly 1 year after Simon retired from Karate.


As such, we have been part of this community for many years and most of our students, and black belts, not surprisingly, are from the local schools and the surrounding areas.

We are part of HDKI (founded by Scott Langley 7th Dan) which is one of the fastest-growing non-Japanese Shotokan Karate organisations

We're governed for insurance purposes by FEKO (Federation of English Karate Organisations) -

We're an open, all-inclusive, family-friendly dojo. We teach and train with all ages, from 6 to 69.....and upwards of that too. 

Our instructors have many years of experience in Karate and have attained many competition medals between them. 

All our instructors are fully-insured, FEKO accredited and CRB/DBS checked.

Come along, train and enjoy!!! Your first lesson is FREE!



To have respect for others

To maintain self-discipline

To be focussed

To gain confidence

To be safe

To be committed

and more importantly... to make it fun



Dan started martial arts aged 8 with Judo, then as a teenager, took classes in kickboxing and spent many years learning Tae Kwon Do, gaining his black belt with the TAGB in 1999 and competed in many competitions including nationals.

In Shotokan, he gained his Shodan (1st Dan) black belt under Rob Bunting, Steve Bails and Amanda Gisby sensei in 2013 and his Nidan (2nd Dan) black belt under Simon Bligh, Chrissie Howard and Simon Shepherd Sensei in 2019 (HDKI)

Dan set up Renshu in January 2021 after being the Sempai for many years at DOEJAP under Simon Shepherd Sensei.

When Simon retired in December 2019, Dan continued to run DOEJAP for a year and despite the challenges of Covid 19 and the lockdown, he still maintained a healthy training regime at the club when guidelines allowed. 

The creation of Renshu takes the club back to the traditional origins of Shotokan, with focus being on continuous training, practice and refinement.

​He loves all aspects of Karate from the sports side right through to Kata and Bunkai (the application of kata) and is proud of the friendly feel that exists at Renshu. Seeing children, adults and families benefit, grow and enjoy what Shotokan brings to people. In fact, both of his sons gained their black belts at the club.

Dan is also a qualified referee and DBS checked.

Sensei: Dan Pope

Owner and Chief Instructor

Nutella started sport karate at the age of 13 when she started training in Goju-Ryu.

She was soon invited to compete at regional and later national WKF competitions where she progressed to the national squad (in Slovakia) attending many more competitions and winning medals every time and went on to reach 1st Kyu in Goju-Ryu.

Nutella, took a break for a few years to raise a one legged donkey and was back as soon as it stopped falling over enough to join her at karate.

Having done Goju-Ryu before, Nutella decided to join DOEJAP in 2017 with the aim of learning traditional Shotokan karate under Simon Shepherd Sensei where she went on to gain her Shodan (1st Dan) in Shotokan under Scott Langley and Simon Shepherd.

Nutella regularly instructs at Renshu attends karate seminars nationally and is an active member of the HDKI GB squad team competing in both Kata and Kumite where she has won many medals in the national competitions.

Nutella is the club coach for competitive sports and leads the teams that represent Renshu in both local and regional competitions.

Nutella obtained her class D judge/referee qualification in 2019, is fully DBS checked and she has also recently completed a sports first aid course to ensure that the dojo is a safe place to practice karate for everyone.


Sempai: Nutella Böttchit

Renshu Shotokan Karate Cheltenham
Renshu Shotokan Karate Cheltenham
Renshu Shotokan Karate Cheltenham
Renshu Shotokan Karate Cheltenham
Renshu Shotokan Karate Cheltenham
Renshu Shotokan Karate Cheltenham


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Where we train

Hillview Community Centre

Hulbert Crescent

Up Hatherley


GL51 3FZ


7.15 to 8.15 Junior Grades

8.15 to 9.15 Senior Grades 

Sempai: Nuttella Böttchit (Junior class)

Sensei: Dan Pope (senior Class)

Balcarras Sports Centre

East End Road

Charlton Kings


GL53 8QF


6.00pm to 7.00pm 

Sensei: Dan Pope