PART ONE — INTRODUCTION:
Today I will address ‘the big 40 kihonwaza’—which is actually 80 (as they examined on both sides)—in standard/mainstream Shotokan. It’s important to note that these waza are not only attacks and defenses but, also include stances and footwork.
Moreover, they are the kihon which optimally underpins all of the other waza in karate; that is, while this is a limited number of various techniques, they train (and unveil) one’s skill in all of the others. It is said that this 'system' was initially developed by Gichin Funakoshi Sensei and Funakoshi Yoshitaka (Gigo) Sensei. However, there is no question that it was later (painstakingly, scientifically and brilliantly) refined by Nakayama Masatoshi Sensei.
While other experts have added their own aspects, the kihon has remained relatively the same: in regards to Shotokan testing. This is important, as Isaka Akihito Sensei said to me to me in 2006: "... Shotokan Ryu is second to none, insofar as kihon is concerned". Furthermore, he dispelled the mixing of karate styles, which I totally agree with. In this regard, something that Osaka Yoshiharu Sensei also said to me in recent years perfectly resonated with this. Nonetheless, for now, I'll leave that there.
Obviously, within Shotokan, there have been (and are) some dramatic variations, which "...elucidates the training and research of various senior instructors". In particular, the excellence of Kanazawa Hirokazu Sensei and Yahara Mikio Sensei come to mind. However, today I will focus on the aforementioned standard 40 waza and avoid crossing over in wonderful innovations (from this exquisite base).
PART TWO — THE ‘BIG 40 STANDARD KIHONWAZA’:
突き技 (Tsukiwaza: Thrust techniques)
1. Chudan choku-zuki, 2. Jodan choku-zuki, 3. Chudan oi-zuki (Chudan jun-zuki), 4. Jodan oi-zuki (Jodan jun-zuki), 5. Chudan gyaku-zuki, 6. Jodan gyaku-zuki, 7. Chudan maete-zuki, 8. Jodan kizami-zuki and 9. Nukite (Chudan tateshihon-nukite).
受け技 (Ukewaza: Reception techniques)
1. Jodan age-uke, 2. Chudan soto-uke, 3. Chudan uchi-uke, 4. Gedan-barai and 5. Chudan shuto-uke.
蹴り技 (Keriwaza: Kicking techniques)
1. Chudan mae-geri keage, 2. Jodan mae-geri keage, 3. Chudan yoko-geri keage, 4. Chudan yoko-geri kekomi, 5. Chudan mawashi-geri, 6. Jodan mawashi-geri, 7. Chudan ushiro-geri kekomi and 8. Chudan kizami mae-geri.
打ち技 (Uchiwaza: Striking techniques)
1. Chudan yoko enpi-uchi, 2. Jodan uraken yokomawashi-uchi, 3. Jodan shuto sotomawashi-uchi and 4. Jodan shuto uchimawashi-uchi.
立ち方 (Tachikata: Stances)
1 . Hachiji-dachi, 2. Musubi-dachi, 3. Heisoku-dachi, 4. Zenkutsu-dachi, 5. Kokutsu-dachi, 6. Kiba-dachi, 7. Kosa-dachi and 8. Jiyu-dachi.
運足 (Unsoku: Leg movements/Footwork)
1. Aiyumibashi (Fumidashi), 2. Kosa-aiyumibashi, 3. Yori-ashi (Yose-ashi), 4. Okuribashi, 5. Tsugi-ashi and 6. Tenshin.
In this way, karate is not limited to merely being effective within the dojo and karate competitions. This is where we pragmatically draw in the knowledge we have, from within the various kata.
Moreover, this makes Shotokan “…a complete art of self defense for people who seek the ability to protect themselves”.
PART FIVE — CONCLUSION
With these points firmly in mind, and put into practice, Shotokan is literally second to none.
© André Bertel. Oita City, Japan (2022).