Tuesday 15 November 2011


Here is the kihon training method I presently advocate. It is very-very simple, very “Japanese style” and gets long-lasting results fast. There are no fancy combinations… There is nothing to hide behind, your posture, movement, stances, and techniques have to be effective. Make this your `daily regime’ and long combinations soon show themselves as being ‘time wasters’ (why not save that for kata?). What’s more, if you can do the core techniques properly, everything else is a breeze.

Following this routine on a daily basis under an exceptional instructor will boost one’s karate incredibly because it only deals with what really matters. In saying that, unless the trainees are vigorously monitored and corrected this routine can groove extremely bad habits. Furthermore, the offensive techniques must be all practiced with full power against a target such as the heavy bag. This has been talked about in my past posts, so I will not address it today.

Practice method & repetitions: Practice each technique in a stationary stance then on the move. In both scenarios start with at least ten slow repetitions and then follow this with at least thirty repetitions with maximum snap. Regardless of speed, the count shouldn’t be too fast. This is to ensure that techniques are practiced fully and that continuity of motion doesn’t not interfere with the decisiveness of techniques (please note that ido-kihon is in zenkutsu-dachi unless otherwise noted).

So here we go...

1. Stationary: Chudan choku-zuki from shizentai (hachinoji-dachi or heiko-dachi).
2. Ido-kihon: Chudan oi-zuki or sambon-zuki.
3. Stationary: Migi then hidari chudan gyaku-zuki in hidari & migi zenkutsu-dachi.
4. Ido-kihon: Chudan gyaku-zuki.
5. Stationary: Jodan age-uke.
6. Ido-kihon: Jodan age-uke kara chudan gyaku-zuki.
7. Stationary: Chudan soto-uke.
8. Ido-kihon: Chudan soto-uke kara chudan gyaku-zuki or yori-ashi yoko empi-uchi (defending in zenkutsu-dachi then driving forward with yori ashi into kiba-dachi).
9. Stationary: Chudan uchi-uke.
10. Ido-kihon: Chudan uchi-uke kara chudan gyaku-zuki.
11. Stationary: Gedan-barai.
12. Ido-kihon: Gedan-barai kara chudan gyaku-zuki.
13. Stationary: Chudan shuto-uke in migi & hidari renoji-dachi.
14. Ido-kihon: Chudan shuto-uke kara nukite (driving forward into zenkutsu-dachi from kokutsu-dachi).
15. Stationary: Chudan mae-geri in heisoku-dachi.
16. Stationary: Migi then hidari chudan mae-geri in hidari & migi zenkutsu-dachi.
17. Ido-kihon: Chudan mae-geri or chudan mae-geri kara chudan oi-zuki or ren-geri.
18. Stationary: Chudan mawashi geri (alternate legs from shizentai landing in zenkutsu-dachi then stepping back into shizentai).
19. Ido-kihon: Chudan mawashi-geri.
20. Stationary: Ushiro-geri (alternate legs from heisoku-dachi rearward landing in zenkutsu-dachi then stepping forward into shizentai).
21. Ido-kihon: Ushiro-geri.
22. Stationary: Yoko-keage in heisoku-dachi.
23. Stationary: Yoko-kekomi in heisoku-dachi
24. Ido-kihon: Yoko-keage (single technique training with kosa-aiyumibashi in kiba-dachi or yoko keage ashi o kaete yoko-kekomi).
25. Ido-kihon: Yoko-kekomi (kosa-aiyumibashi in kiba-dachi or in zenkutsu-dachi).

Supplement this kihon (and the aforementioned impact training) with the eleven kihon-gata (the five Heian, Junro and Tekki-shodan) and kihon kumite (Gohon & Kihon Ippon Kumite). The main point is "TO KEEP KIHON PRACTICE SIMPLE"; therefore, always remember "the biggest asset of kihon training is simplicity". Overall, when working on the `advanced' kata and kumite the more simple and perfect your kihon-geiko is, the better your karate will become.

© André Bertel, Christchurch, New Zealand (2011).

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