This site is based on my daily practice of Shotokan Karate-Do here in Oita City, Japan. More than anything else, unlike the majority of other karate websites, this page is primarily dedicated to Budo Karate training itself; that is, Karate-Do as a vehicle for holistic development.
Sunday, 7 July 2019
Latest Self-Training Regime and some Tips
Movement one of 二十四歩 NIJUSHIHO.
Here is my latest training regime. To supplement this one, as I have not posted my personal routine in a while, I've also included some information on practice objectives in kihon; furthermore, some tips for Yakusoku Kumite training (namely, three major points to avoid when counterattacking). I hope this post finds everyone well, moreover, offers something useful for your own karate practice. Best wishes from Oita City, Kyushu, Japan.
At present my foundational training is all Ido-Kihon, based
on the following 10 renzokuwaza. Repetitions of each of these is dependent on
my daily condition; nevertheless, the average is between 10 and 30 bursts.
1. Basic punch combination with a focus on correct
propulsion and penetration, via ‘shoulder extension’ and hikite: either (a)
Sanbon ren zuki or(b) Kizami zuki kara sanbon ren zuki;
2-5. Fundamental rotation from hanmi into zenmi with focus
of correct correspondences between axises and heels: the four foundationalclosed fist ukewaza—(2) jodan age uke, (3) chudan
soto ude uke, (4) chudan uchi ude uke and(5) gedan barai—each followed by chudan gyaku
6. Transition of power from back stance ‘100% forward’ with
both keri and tsuki: Chudan shuto uke (kokutsu dachi) kara chudan kizami mae
geri soshite chudan tate shihon nukite;
7-9. ‘Legs followed by hands’—with special focus on the
sasae ashi—when kicking and, again, after kicking to deliver the follow up
‘tsuki’: (7) Mae geri keage kara oi zuki; (8) Mawashi geri kara chudan gyaku zuki; (9) Ushiro geri kekomi kara chudan gyaku zuki; and…
10.Defining the difference between the two main forms of
yoko geri, however in both cases, especially expressing full ‘tai no shinshuku’
for optimal power and bio-mechanically healthy movement: Yoko geri keage ashi o
kaete yoko geri kekomi (kiba dachi).
At present I’m
practising four kata per day. These are: (1) One指定型 (Shiteigata)—any 平安
(Tekki Shodan); (2) One 選定型
(Bassai Dai), 燕飛
(Kanku Dai); (3) One 自由型(Jiyugata)—currently either 珍手
(Nijushiho); and (4) One 古典型(Kotengata). In recent weeks this kata has
been chosen from ‘the
natural energy forms’:
(Suishu), 風手 (Hushu)
(Roshu). Training/Repetitions: all four kata that I practise each day are
repeated no less than four times (alternating between very slow and regular
Movement 16 of Sentei-gata: 観空大 KANKU DAI.
Movement 36 of Sentei-gata: 燕飛ENPI.
focused on two forms of Kumite at present to lift my foundational skills and
reactivity. These are: 五本組手
(Gohon Kumite) and 基本一本組手
(Kihon Ippon Kumite).
While some may scoff at the practicality of these
training methods, over the years, I have found them to be very effective tools
for sharpening my pragmatic skills. People who have attended my classes and
seminars will understand this!! Anyway—away from this generic point—in my
current training I am working on further cutting down the time for immediate
Please note: It is imperative to avoid three major
errors that many people make when countering in yakusoku kumite:
(i) Firstly, many karateka merely use gyaku zuki, every time, when they counter their training partner.
Of course, gyaku zuki is perfect if the maai, and positioning/angles, are
optimal. If it isn't optimal, it is an all-out error. This is what is often referred to, by competent instructors ,as 'the brainless gyaku-zuki'.
(ii) Secondly and contrastingly, many people start ‘getting creative’ and using all sorts of fancy counters… Don’t be creative, choose the most effective/devastating counter
instinctively. Avoid set techniques. Overall, ask yourself, after each time returning to shizentai, “would the counter I selected, in that given moment, give me the best chance of finishing my opponent?”. If not, it is obvious that
bad habits are being trained.
(iii) And thirdly, as mentioned above, move as quickly
as possible, without any adjustment from your defensive position. This relates
to the first two points, yet needs to be stressed. Any adjustment of your defensive position to launch your counterattack literally invalidates the counterattack. You must 'launch' from where you are!!! With this in mind, let me reiterate… Counter from your immediate
position, with no adjustment and with the best possible technique (to the optimal
target). This is based on you and your opponents position in an instant. Don’t be creative with your counterattacks, be utterly pragmatic. Yes, the best technique is the most simple in that moment; hence, gyaku zuki is often used. But not always! Last, but certainly not least, always remember that Gohon and Kihon Ippon Kumite are Kihon drills, not "Kumite/Fighting" as such; therefore, use the controlled stimuli these drills provide to hone