history


Makiwara Exercises for Skills and Variety

The makiwara, or machiwara in Uchinaguchi (lit. “Okinawa mouth,” the native language of Okinawa), is a popularly referenced, albeit often misunderstood, traditional karate training tool. It has fallen out of favor with many karateka, either because they feel it is antiquated and less-useful than modern equipment, or simply because it is uncomfortable, painful, and sometimes boring to work with. As […]

motobu makiwara ipponken

how-to-bunkai

How to Bunkai

Bunkai (lit. “take apart, analyze”), in the context of karate, is the practice of breaking down kata and working on developing applications for their movements, but sometimes it can be hard for karateka to figure out how to apply kata movements on their own. This is compounded by the fact that many instructors still only teach basic “block-punch-kick” applications for […]


Book Review – Bubishi: The Classic Manual of Combat

The Bubishi is considered, by many, to be required reading for any karateka. It is a collection of essays, recipes, and diagrams transferred to Okinawa from China–most likely in small sections over time–and it is believed to be related to, or part of, a Chinese war manual called the Wu Bei Zhi, which was written in the 16th and 17th […]

bubishi book

denwood

Interview with Chris Denwood

Chris Denwood is a karateka, fitness expert, researcher, and the author of “Respecting the Old, Creating the New,” and “Naihanchi (Tekki): The Seed of Shuri Karate Vol. 1.” The latter is easily the most comprehensive book on Naihanchi Shodan fundamentals that I have ever read, and I highly recommend it to anyone who practices Naihanchi kata that can be traced back […]


Using Examples of Karate Methods from Other Arts

Martial arts come in a wide array of styles and methodologies, but they are all connected by the human body and laws of nature, so even among wildly different systems, founded centuries and countries apart, there can be found many similar, related, or complimentary methods. While many martial artists prefer to segregate styles and promote the isolationist idea that each […]

genki sudo

Motobu_Choki_kamae

Motobu Choki and Stopping Attacks with “Blocks”

“One cannot use continuous attacks against true karate. That is because the blocks of true karate make it impossible for the opponent to launch a second attack” The above quote comes from Motobu Choki, as translated by Joe Swift, and is one of many somewhat enigmatic statements from the famed Okinawan fighter about the nature of karate. Some of his […]


The Purpose of Kata

The practice and purpose of kata is something that is often debated, and can be a serious point of contention between martial artists. Many people believe that kata are outdated and useless, and should no longer be practiced. Others believe that kata are exercises for fitness, balance, and coordination, but nothing more. There are also those who believe that kata […]

Performing Seiyunchin in the desert

Ed Sumner working one of Chuck Merriman's footwork drills

Ed Sumner’s Review of the Ryukyu Martial Arts Friendship Gasshuku

The following review was submitted to me by Ed Sumner (Kyoshi, Nanadan, Goju-Ryu under the late Chinen Teruo Sensei). I have added photos, and done some minor grammatical editing. I had the opportunity to attend the Ryukyu Martial Arts Friendship Gasshuku this last weekend, hosted by Noah Legel at the Peaceful Warrior Dojo in Scottsdale, AZ.  Noah had attended our […]