Power Generation Methods

Karate is not a single, homogeneous practice, but rather is made up of a wide variety of styles, all of which are eclectic blends of native Okinawan arts, Japanese arts, Chinese arts, Indochinese arts, and more. While the human body only functions in so many ways, there are actually quite a number of approaches to doing most things, including generating […]

Nishiyama (Shotokan) breaking boards

Myself with Eddie Bethea Sensei after the test

Testing for Nidan

On Wednesday, July 20th, 2016, I tested for Nidan, along with another Nidan candidate, two Shodan candidates, and several brown belt candidates. The testing panel consisted of: John Dominguez, MD, Shodan Jim Mitchell, Shodan Richard Poage, Renshi, Godan Michael Newland, Renshi, Rokudan Jeff Allred, Renshi, Rokudan Eddie Bethea, Kyoshi, Hachidan The Shodan candidates had to complete a written exam, which […]

Is Karate a Grappling Art?

Lately, my friends over at Karate Culture have been posting videos, like the one above, that connect kata to techniques found in mixed martial arts, and various grappling arts–something I have also done, although on a smaller scale. This has brought with it some argument as to the nature of karate. As with most such arguments, this one is not […]


Taira Masaji demonstrating Goju-Ryu techniques

Clearing the Way

  As karateka, we often look at being on the receiving end of attacks, but sometimes we can overlook dealing with the defense of our attackers. From a philosophical view, it is easy to understand why this could happen. Most serious karateka are familiar with the concept of “karate ni sente nashi,” or “there is no initiating hand in karate.” […]

Pressure Testing Tuidi

The grappling techniques of karate are classified as tuidi-waza (seizing hand techniques). This primarily refers to joint locks and grabbing/tearing techniques, but could technically include some types of chokes, throws and takedowns. We practice these in kata, in application drills, and in flow drills, but most people don’t work them in a randori (free grappling) scenario. Admittedly, free grappling with […]

Motobu Choki demonstrating tuidi-waza from Naihanchi Shodan

The double arm shoulder throw, as demonstrated by Itoman Morinobu

The Shoulder Throws of Karate

When martial artists think of throws, they often think of judo, and if you say “shoulder throw,” they will generally think of judo’s ippon seoi nage (single point carry-on-the-back throw) and morote seoi nage (double carry-on-the-back throw), which are often called single/double “shoulder throws.” While classical karate does contain a throw similar to seoi otoshi (carry-on-the-back drop), which is a […]

Revisiting the One-Legged Spin in Kusanku

The one-legged turn in Kusanku Dai A little over a year ago, I wrote a quick post to show three techniques that I had recorded video of, and wanted to share. I didn’t go over any of the techniques in-depth, and I wanted to revisit the Kusanku application, to shed a little more light on it. The kata movement is […]



Passai and Kusanku Oyo Bunkai – Sukui-Uke

Recently, an online friend of mine, who studies and teaches the Shinjinbukan system, has been posting video clips from Onaga Yoshimitsu Sensei’s trip through Europe. The most recent video (at the time of writing this post) is the one, above. At about 1:14, you can see Onaga Sensei demonstrate an application for a movement in Passai. We actually teach the […]