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#139628 - 05/07/05 12:02 AM wasted or necessary movements?
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
In the style/philosophy of karate you practice, are these wasted or necessary movements in kata...

(I started to use English technique names, but since this is a karate forum now...ha... Nihongo hanashimasho ka!)

  • 1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai).

  • 2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next.

  • 3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi.

  • 4. open hand with thumb bent in.

  • 5. open hand with fingers straight and together.

  • 6. lift back heel slightly when punching.

  • 7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching.

  • 8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes.

  • 9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks.

  • 10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head.

  • 11. long and low zenkutsu dachi.


I look forward for your feedback.

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#139629 - 05/07/05 12:48 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
AgenT Offline
Member

Registered: 10/11/04
Posts: 314
When I do katas usually I do the full motion. It helps me understand its dynamics better. Now when I do kata especially beginning ones, I try to eliminate all wasted movement. When it comes to kata movement usually doing the full motion tends to help keep the rythm of the kata. I dont do a low zen though its more upright and i keep my guard hand closed when doing open hand strikes and always move my head first. I tend to experiment by cutting out as much uneeded movement as I can it adds a good deal of power, its a little more difficult to maintain a good fluidity but other then that its fine. Most those movements you mentioned I dont see as wasted movements because any part of the movement can be used.

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#139630 - 05/07/05 12:58 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
SANCHIN31 Offline
Former Moderator

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3783
Loc: Arkansas, U.S.
Quote:

In the style/philosophy of karate you practice, are these wasted or necessary movements in kata...

(I started to use English technique names, but since this is a karate forum now...ha... Nihongo hanashimasho ka!)

  • 1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai).

  • 2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next.

  • 3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi.

  • 4. open hand with thumb bent in.

  • 5. open hand with fingers straight and together.

  • 6. lift back heel slightly when punching.

  • 7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching.

  • 8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes.

  • 9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks.

  • 10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head.

  • 11. long and low zenkutsu dachi.


I look forward for your feedback.




1. Not wasted at all. Bringing the hand could be deflecting a punch,the other hand grabs the wrist and pulls to hip.The deflecting hand then delivers a strike to various targets.

2. Always look before your technique.Your eyes focus your power.

3. Back leg should not be completely locked.

4. Thumb should not be bent,it should be pulled toward the palm and straight.Bent is an incorrect shuto.

5. Fingers should be slightly bent.

6. Lift the heel to generate power from the ground.

7. Thpppt!! That is a sport version and incorret. Fist should be at 3/4 turn for proper bone and muscle alignment.

8. Palm up indicates you having someone's arm or wrist lifting upward.

9. Crossing arms can be a two way action(push/pull)or for grappling applications.

10. When the knifehand comes backward that is the direction of the first strike,the second is forward on a different target.

11. This stance should be like standing in a square not elongated.

These are my beliefs and how I was taught.I've found them to be accurate for true self defense applications.
_________________________
Skinny,Bald,and Handsome! Fightingarts Warrior of the year

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#139631 - 05/07/05 01:55 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
I should answer my thoughts on these too: this is the way I think of these techniques, If I seem to criticise it's because 1. I care. and 2. I want an honest reaction if you disagree.

1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai).
I used to do this in kata, but bunkai I felt open hand was more natural. since not many people punch and kick at the same time, I practice this block by only bringing the fist to about elbow height. there are other technique that effectively deal with punch/kick defense.

2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next.
yeah, I was taught to look first...but moving your eyes first then moving your head with your body makes more sense for less telegraph. if you notice...old footage of masters don't turn their heads first. I have a couple of theories as to why that is.

3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi.
only at the moment of impact!

4. open hand with thumb bent in.
I broke a thumb doing this once during a ridgehand strike...haven't bent my thumb during it since.

5. open hand with fingers straight and together.
yes, but I'm often loose with the hand until right before the moment of contact.

6. lift back heel slightly when punching.
blech...horrible loss of power. when you have your heel up it acts as a shock absorber...you don't want to absorb shock! you want to transmit it! have someone push your punch and notice the difference between the two ways...let me know what you find out.

7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching.
3/4 turn...everybody knows that. some do 1/2 turn which also makes more sense than full turn.

8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes.
this is the way I first learned...later I was taught to keep it at a more comfortable and efficient 45.

9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks.
does anyone ever actually do those blocks in sparring? no, they don't. sure you could make up some elaborate and maybe effective bunkai for this, but when you really think about it...it doesn't make much sense to ever have both arms tied up at the same point in your center IF you are just blocking.

10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head.
complete waste of travel distance unless you are breaking boards.

11. long and low zenkutsu dachi.
another blech...don't see this stance too much in full-contact sparring either. no manoverability. forces an overcommitment to the technique. and begs for a sweep/takedown. a stance for show only. they should rename the long-n-low to 'trophy stance'. I think Elvis popularized this stance.
_________________________
Boris the Irresistable Monstrosity.

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#139632 - 05/07/05 02:34 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: SANCHIN31]
CVV Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Belgium
Great Karate forum.

On the number 2, first look into the direction you are moving.
In Goju-ryu this is not the case. The head will move simultaniously to the movement because of close fighting.
I give an example for Kururunfa (but I am happy to discus any Goju kata). In the first 2 movements(slide into neko-achi dachi sideway's, blocking punch or breaking arm + kanzetsu-geri) the attacker is in front of you attacking straight foreward. You slide to the right (left in second movement) and simultanously turn the head as you move out of his line looking at your adversary. If I would look first to the side and then move, this would indicate an attack from the side in wich I would go straight back, not sideway's. This is not good Goju-ryu as we try to move out of the line of attack.
Currently regarding shitei-ni kata kururunfa it is thaught moving the head first and then doing the movement. I discussed this with a senior (Usamu Hirano shihan) and his comment was that the new kata instructions are not logic and simplefied Goju ryu to fit the need of uniform execution rules for kata for all styles, to have clear rules in competition. He refuses to abandon the old way and will only teach the shitei version in preparation for competition but will not use it as standard.
I hope this will evolve in the right direction and not abandon the old ways just to have simplefied sport kata.
I have always opposed to the idea to have 2 types of kata (a sport and a traditional version) as this will destroy the heart of kata.
In our dojo we have abandoned the shitei practise and stick to 'traditional' execution.

In Shotokan and Wado-ryu it is mandatory to look first and then move. I do not know regarding Shito-ryu, especially the Naha kata ? I think they adapted to first look then move.

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#139633 - 05/07/05 02:36 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
SANCHIN31 Offline
Former Moderator

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3783
Loc: Arkansas, U.S.
Quote:

I should answer my thoughts on these too: this is the way I think of these techniques, If I seem to criticise it's because 1. I care. and 2. I want an honest reaction if you disagree.




Hi, I am now going to spank your post into submission

Quote:

1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai).
I used to do this in kata, but bunkai I felt open hand was more natural. since not many people punch and kick at the same time, I practice this block by only bringing the fist to about elbow height. there are other technique that effectively deal with punch/kick defense.




Doesn't matter how you do the kata if you have a good application for it.

Quote:

2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next.
yeah, I was taught to look first...but moving your eyes first then moving your head with your body makes more sense for less telegraph. if you notice...old footage of masters don't turn their heads first. I have a couple of theories as to why that is.




Yes!


Quote:

3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi.
only at the moment of impact!




oky doky.

Quote:

4. open hand with thumb bent in.
I broke a thumb doing this once during a ridgehand strike...haven't bent my thumb during it since.




That'll learn ya!! Lots of people find out the hard way. That too is a sport version and makes your hand weak.Somebody must have thought it looked cool.

Quote:

5. open hand with fingers straight and together.
yes, but I'm often loose with the hand until right before the moment of contact.




You should be,as with any other strike.

Quote:

6. lift back heel slightly when punching.
blech...horrible loss of power. when you have your heel up it acts as a shock absorber...you don't want to absorb shock! you want to transmit it! have someone push your punch and notice the difference between the two ways...let me know what you find out.




Well you don't start the punch with your heel up silly. I'm talking about a reverse punch.The heel comes up as the body torques and transfers the energy,not before.

Quote:

7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching.
3/4 turn...everybody knows that. some do 1/2 turn which also makes more sense than full turn.




You'd be surprised how many don't know that and will stand there and argue with you(me)til they're blue in the gills!!

Quote:

8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes.
this is the way I first learned...later I was taught to keep it at a more comfortable and efficient 45.




Once again,doesn't matter how you position it as long as the application is good.

Quote:

9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks.
does anyone ever actually do those blocks in sparring? no, they don't. sure you could make up some elaborate and maybe effective bunkai for this, but when you really think about it...it doesn't make much sense to ever have both arms tied up at the same point in your center IF you are just blocking.




The bunkai is not too elaborate. Two way action,grappling applications.Definately not a block though.

Quote:

10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head.
complete waste of travel distance unless you are breaking boards.




As the arm comes in strike it going back toward you(this is the back motion),then strike forward on various targets.Striking the arm in this manner numbs it,ouch.

Quote:

11. long and low zenkutsu dachi.
another blech...don't see this stance too much in full-contact sparring either. no manoverability. forces an overcommitment to the technique. and begs for a sweep/takedown. a stance for show only. they should rename the long-n-low to 'trophy stance'. I think Elvis popularized this stance.





I agree with you there. Now go to your room.
_________________________
Skinny,Bald,and Handsome! Fightingarts Warrior of the year

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#139634 - 05/07/05 04:04 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: SANCHIN31]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
CVV...I agree with everything you redundantly said. lol

{cracks nuckles}
Sanchin,
first, how old do you think I am? I'm 38 and haven't been told to go to my room in at least 4 or 5 years!

"Doesn't matter how you do the kata if you have a good application for it."
-don't tell that to white belts...you'll get katas looking like the latest JChan sequence.

I thought you were saying you have your heel up during impact...nevermind.

I see what you are saying about knifehand strikes starting at the head....but I still don't agree. if you are using it to block, then it is still wasted motion, if you are using it to sting...well then you must be playing patty-cake.

thats it. I'm ZZZZ'in.

good talk sanchin, CVV

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#139635 - 05/07/05 03:24 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
kenposan Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/23/01
Posts: 633
Loc: Columbus, Ohio
Quote:



(I started to use English technique names, but since this is a karate forum now...ha... Nihongo hanashimasho ka!)





It is a karate forum but that doesn't mean we all use Japanese terminology. My sensei dropped it long before I came along so it's all gibberish to me.
_________________________
The angry man will defeat himself in battle, as well as in life. -Samurai maxim

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#139636 - 05/07/05 04:56 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: kenposan]
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
First I don't have time now to answer each point from the original post. But here is my basic take on this subject. Kintama, I don't know if you are saying that these are all things your learned in Matsubayashi, but I have seen people do and teach all of what you say. Most of it is misinterpretation. Everyone's body is different and at more advanced levels I will do some things that others will not, but as long as we are using the same basic principles it is okay. To straighten the back leg completely at any point in zenkutsu dachi is not understanding the way power is generated in karate. Our style is natural and we sink into our stances. To lock out the back leg will rob you of power. Gravity is used to move forward, not muscular power like straightening and pushing with the legs. If I generate power with my center I am doing real karate, and as MV has said many times there is more involved than just koshi. Like I said in an earlier post that was erased the fist is not brought to the shoulder using muscular power. It is a side effect of using relaxed power. The fist whips. Think about cracking a whip. No one asks, as I crack my whip should the tail end go behind me as I strike with it, it just happens naturally. It is the physics of using a whip. Karate is very similar. If you are generating power properly and using the proper prinicples your questions will be answered and bad habits will go away. Many people do not understand how techniques are used and therefore do not understand why karate is done how it is done. Then people misinterpret the actual technique and create something that is a far cry from what it was originally intended. If you understand why you do and not just what you think you do karate becomes more effective.

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#139637 - 05/08/05 12:44 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: medulanet]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
"I don't know if you are saying that these are all things your learned in Matsubayashi"

no, not all. I just listed a bunch of aspects that people in the past (MV and others, I wish it wasn't deleted) have pointed out as being 'school boy' karate, and I was interested in thoughts on it.

"To straighten the back leg completely at any point in zenkutsu dachi is not understanding the way power is generated in karate"

I disagree, respectfully of course.
At the moment of impact, you don't want to introduce any shock absorbers. back leg straight (not hyperextended), and heel down. front heel and back knee is 1 fist distance away.
You used the infamous cracking whip metaphor... I agree when you say: body loose, weight sunken into stance, non-muscle centric power, you go where your hara leads you-yes?. HOWEVER right at the point of impact you don't want to be a whip, you want your body to be a structure that doesn't bend or give under stress. the force has to go somewhere, where do you want it to go? 10% to the bent knee, 20% to the raised shoulder, and lets raise the back heel for another 15% loss?. I don't think so, you want as much force transmitted to the target by properly structuring your body with no weak points along a dispersed path from ground to fist. some will be thru the front leg, most will be from the rear leg. I don't care if it's called bad form or school boy, it's physics of structure. (if it's done correctly, an observer can't even tell that it is straightening because it's for a fraction of a second).
I know what kind of karate you were talking about, and I agree with you. but I'm not going to budge on the straight leg during impact until I see proof. You might have figured out a way to compensate the power loss in a way I'm not aware of, but that wouldn't make you able to say that I don't understand the way power is generated in karate...we simply arrived at the same answer using different methods... like Victor says: it's all just Karate.

Thank-you for sharing your thoughts.

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#139638 - 05/08/05 01:07 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
Kintama Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/17/05
Posts: 2724
Loc: Massachusetts
just remembered a simple example to try at the dojo...
line up an extended reverse punch in front of your suspended bag; have someone (or yourself) swing the bag into your fist from increasing heights...what part of your body buckles first? If your torso moves back, try it again with the rear leg straight.

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#139639 - 05/08/05 06:22 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3219
Loc: Derry, NH
Interesting, any one of these could be a complete topic in their own right, but as an Isshinryu stylist I'll try to answer.

* 1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai).

Two schools of thought. One terribly important, if the initial chambering is part of the deflection the low block is using, or if it's to strike into an attacking limb before the technique then strikes into the body. The second school of thought is for speed, and advanced students after say 15 years of training, move to shortened executin and just explode into the movement conclusion. Both schools ofthought have merit, one not better or worse than the other, just different answers.


* 2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next.

Basic rule of life, what you can't see you can't hit. Feel free to believe otherwise, I hope you teach your students not to look first, truly I do, makes it easie for mine.

* 3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi.

Unfortunatlye Isshinryu doesn't use zenkatusu dachi, so no reason to do so. our front stance is a modified version of Seisan. Now I practice other ways too, and the manner where zenkatsu is performed depends on the intent of the application. Sort of you either are trained to make it work or not.

* 4. open hand with thumb bent in.

Sure, but creating the hand bow takes a long time to learn how to relax properly and make it work. Not bending the thumb is a factor showing alternate answers to proper training.

* 5. open hand with fingers straight and together.

See 4 above. Okinawan training can be found using both schools of thought too.

* 6. lift back heel slightly when punching.

Depends on how your trained. When I teach Isshinryu the shape of the body when striking uses the feet fully in contact with the floor, but the weight centered on the balls of the feet, not the heels. When I use bando stick, the descending strike uses a different body shape and the back heel rises, and their striking uses that shape to deliver their rolling punches too. One not better or worse, just different answers.

* 7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching.

Isshinryu uses a vertical striking paradigm. Other answers strike as an upercut, or various turning answers to 90 dgrees rotation past the horizontal (Chinenese models) Issue has nothing to do with the fist being used, has to do with whether you're trained to deliver it correctly to the appropriate target.


* 8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes.

Yep, depending on the application being used. If your one hand is grabbed, it rotating palm up moves their arm so that your open hand strike into it creates the best answer to break their arm. Often real life answers are from somebody grabbing you first. Hence every application has true meaning.


* 9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks.

Terribly important, correct body mechnaics, and using your centering to increase the techniques effectiveness demand this. Of course fractal analysis also yeilds incredible subtle applications for this crossing movement too, where strikes into the opponents most open body areas are possible.

* 10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head.

Terribly important, for those applications that relate to answers no. 1.

* 11. long and low zenkutsu dachi.

As before Isshinryu has absolutely no need of zenkatsu dachi. On the other hand I trained under a shotokan stylist and made the point their answer was too slow. Grinning he snapped back into a terribly low zenkatsu dachi with super speed and then blasted a front kick into my lips with focus. Makes one realize it ain't the stance, its how you're trained.

There aren't straight line answers, just many different layers of training, IMVHO.

Victor Smith
bushi no te isshinryu

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#139640 - 05/08/05 02:08 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
hedkikr Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 02/28/05
Posts: 2827
Loc: Southern California, USA
Nutz, Great topic!

For anyone who's listening & interested, Kin is absolutely correct about locking the rear leg @ the moment of contact (solid bar vs. a segmented bar for support theory). Most don't know but Kimura knew.

The bent thumb for Haito is incorrect as he experienced. Haito was never intended to be executed w/ bent thumb - folded across the palm is correct. Folded thumb is only used for Shuto (uke & uchi). The reason it's folded is to precipitate a grab which would be impossible if your thumb is in your palm.

Many large actions we were taught were implemented as a teaching aid leading to the acquisition of more precission skills (learning to write in capital letters before cursive). Sadly, many instructors who thought they knew it all & left their sensei to teach on their own didn't know this. They taught what they were taught as gospel. This refers to the full-twist punch, standard gedan barai/uke, raising the hand to the ear, turning the head (what do you think periferal vision is for?), straitening the fingers etc.,etc., etc. I've actually heard a Shotokan instructor say "If it was good enough for Funakoshi, it's good enough for me."

Owari

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#139641 - 05/10/05 03:17 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
Multiversed Offline
Banned

Registered: 03/11/03
Posts: 642
Loc: Sa, Tx. USA
Quote:

In the style/philosophy of karate you practice, are these wasted or necessary movements in kata...

(I started to use English technique names, but since this is a karate forum now...ha... Nihongo hanashimasho ka!)

  • 1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai).

  • 2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next.

  • 3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi.

  • 4. open hand with thumb bent in.

  • 5. open hand with fingers straight and together.

  • 6. lift back heel slightly when punching.

  • 7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching.

  • 8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes.

  • 9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks.

  • 10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head.

  • 11. long and low zenkutsu dachi.


I look forward for your feedback.




1) No, it crosses you up.

2) Of course. You have to see where you're going and what's there before you go there.

3)Not when punching, but maybe when caught in a double-leg takedown attempt. Sitting down on your punches especially for body shots and slightly flexing your rear leg for higher level punches makes more sense, but you have to train this way for it to make sense and work.

4) I don't want to explain why, but the "structural ki" of a shuto with straight fingers, thumb included, is much stronger. For Nukite the thumb should rest on the palm (bent).

5) Yes or slightly apart and hand slightly cupped.

6) Only if you're boxing with gloves. In karate being rooted is essential for proper energy distribution and to avoid having 1.5 contacts vs. 2 when facing sweeps and throws. In karate you can push with your rear leg, but most styles employ steeping with the front leg first then pulling the rear leg up. That is why hip rotation and the use of physics is more important with bone-to-bone/tissue strikes.

7) Yes, but only for certain hooking and circular strikes. Otherwise 3/4.

8) Sure why not, but common sense would tell you that a halfway point with the thumb side up and fingers forward pointing 45 degrees from the horizontal, makes more sense. It gives you more options and a greater range of hand motion.

9) Yes, but not crossing yourself up. The ulna side should always be out in case your arms get trapped. This gives you more strength in a forward push. That's all I'll say, because you'd have to be in front of me to really explain.

10) You could call that "halfway giving your opponent a choke". Use gravity that's all I'll say, but folks will still teach the "Gorilla Pimp Slap" uraken.

11) No. There are deep and wide stances in karate. They are seen in kata like Kusanku. But not a true forward/front stance. Zenkutsu as taught in gendai karate (specifically Shotokan) is adopted from kendo and also is an attempt to counter grappling techs from Judo. Of course the physical fitness, muscular development thing is a reason too. It was from schoolboy karate taught on Okinawa. It also decreased mobility and created an environment for the sportification of tode. It worked.

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#139642 - 05/10/05 04:19 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
nenipp Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/13/04
Posts: 1205

  • 1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai).
    Not if the only thing I'm doing is a downward strike

  • 2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next.
    Not necessarily head snap, I can change the direction of my mean glare without snapping my head (which only makes me dizzy)

  • 3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi.
    No, at least not locked

  • 4. open hand with thumb bent in.
    If I strike with haito, I want the thumb out of the way

  • 5. open hand with fingers straight and together.
    Saw someone talking about "nukite", on what target would it be better to strike with the tips of the fingers, than with some other part of the hand (very few that I can think of, I think nukite is a misinterpretation from the very beginning, but I'm probably wrong as usual)?

  • 6. lift back heel slightly when punching.
    the analogy with somebody pressing against you or absorbing the blow of a swinging bag, is flawed logic at it's peak.
    In a punch you need forward momentum.
    I've tried both, and I'd say that heal down does allow me to hit harder, but that does definately not mean heal up means weak punching.


  • 7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching.
    Depends, seldom full turn

  • 8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes.
    If it is a GUARD hand, why should I turn the palm up, I don't get it?

  • 9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks.
    Not if they are BLOCKs, but if they are oyo jutsu from uke waza.. why not

  • 10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head.
    See above

  • 11. long and low zenkutsu dachi.
    Not for any reason I can think of (doesn't mean there isn't any)

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    #139643 - 05/11/05 05:41 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: medulanet]
    ai-uchi Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/01/05
    Posts: 200
    Loc: harlow essex
    Quote:

    . Gravity is used to move forward, not muscular power like straightening and pushing with the legs.

    i cannot accept that gravity moves anything forward, it moves it down only, well after 3 years of sport science and a post grad course i think i finally cracked that one.

    as for raising the back heel i cannot believe karateka think that keeping your heel on the ground is the way to developing power. as karate works on science principles how cn you get full rotation of the hip unless your rear heel is lifted (this comes about due to hip rotation nt as a separate discrete movement.

    if it did not produce power then other sportsmen would not do i.e. boxer do not punch with a foot flat on ground when punching 100% with rear hand

    first post in the new forum
    _________________________
    streakers - your end is in sight

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    #139644 - 05/11/05 05:54 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: ai-uchi]
    medulanet Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 09/03/03
    Posts: 2142
    Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
    I don't have a lot of time so I will say one thing now, and more later. When a person falls they do not fall straight down, but either forward, backward, or to one side or the other. In karate we can move by learning to control this "falling" to move forward, backward, or to either side. This is not a western concept like that class/classes your took, but it is eastern. Gravity is not only directly below us but it is all around. By using just enough force to over come it we can use it to your advantage. Along with sport science maybe you should take physics.

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    #139645 - 05/11/05 06:49 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: medulanet]
    Alejandro Offline
    Enthusiast

    Registered: 05/02/02
    Posts: 940
    Loc: Las Cruces, NM USA
    Things from physics like gravity and action-reaction force became associated with karate in the 20th century; before that it was just natural body motion. The "falling" is like when you are walking. As you step forward while walking normally you fall slightly until your rear leg brings its foot forwardto catch the fall. This, applied to a straight punch, creates energy. A good karate tsuki doesn't rely on reaction force and exaggerated hip rotation, but allowing gravity to pull ones body weight down (created by a slight drop of the front knee), which lets the body shift (not really lean) forward; all that energy is then whipped out in the arm and fist into the target.

    The heel doesn't have to be raised, but it also doesn't have to be stuck to the floor. In order for the above-described energy generation to work, the rear foot must be light, with weight focused on the ball of the foot. However, in this tsuki one doesn't generate power by pushing off the floor with the ball of the rear foot, as in modern boxing. This sticks your rear foot into the floor, preventing you from allowing gravity to penetrate your fist into the target. By simply keeping the foot light, without worrying if the heel is coming up, it may just slide forward slightly at execution. If the heel comes up a little, cool, the foot simply shouldn't be stuck to the floor.

    ai-uchi mentioned that the heel must be lifted to get full hip rotation. That may be true, but karate tsuki does not rely on full hip rotation to generate power. The koshi, which refers to an area much greater than just the hips, it is really the entire core area, is snapped forward to aid the forward motion of the entire body and to add speed to the movement. A common Western misconception is that it is just the hips at work. The hips meet the punch squarely, not over rotated like much modern technique. The koshi motion is just one (albeit an important one) part of the whole package of energy generation.


    Edited by Alejandro (05/11/05 06:56 PM)
    _________________________
    In Budo, -Al

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    #139646 - 05/12/05 01:26 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Alejandro]
    medulanet Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 09/03/03
    Posts: 2142
    Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
    Actually, I think gravity had an affect on karate before the 20th century.

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    #139647 - 05/12/05 05:50 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: medulanet]
    Kintama Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 04/17/05
    Posts: 2724
    Loc: Massachusetts
    weird... I woke up this morning and even before my first cup of coffee, I had this thought: What would fighting in zero gravity look like? (without needing life support suits). I picture lots of chokes, locks and grappling...I guess similar to underwater fighting. Your 'hara' center of 'gravity' would be dynamically changing and based upon the relation to your opponents body position, maybe. Strikes would be muscle power for speed only with only the mass of your hand behind it...no momentum! (unless you could push off a stationary object, then you'd have some momentum using your full body mass). bizaare.

    After I drank some coffee, the thought went away.

    spaced out on my own thread...

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    #139648 - 05/12/05 10:39 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: medulanet]
    Alejandro Offline
    Enthusiast

    Registered: 05/02/02
    Posts: 940
    Loc: Las Cruces, NM USA
    Nice one, medulant!
    _________________________
    In Budo, -Al

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    #139649 - 05/12/05 04:05 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: medulanet]
    ai-uchi Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/01/05
    Posts: 200
    Loc: harlow essex
    gravity when discussed in science deals with a downward motion, which is why objcts such as discus and javelin can be detailed in its flight pattern.

    the forward motion is somebody falls is due to muscular contraction, not gravity. Gravity is the attraction between two bodies and works in a straight line. therfore when punching you need a forward movement behind the punch which does require muscular conraction, so i am sorry sir and as regard my classes , as somebody who teaches sport science in college i do have a fair idea of what i am talking about.

    when you move forward gravity does in deed attempt to pull you down, however the forward movement is initiated by your legs not be gravity which can initiate movement in only one direction - down.
    _________________________
    streakers - your end is in sight

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    #139650 - 05/12/05 04:29 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: ai-uchi]
    nenipp Offline
    Veteran

    Registered: 04/13/04
    Posts: 1205
    So if I was to put my bowling ball on top of my bo, it would only move down (unless my bo had developed muscles since i last saw it, and I don't think it has, it get's far too little exercise)

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    #139651 - 05/12/05 04:33 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: ai-uchi]
    Alejandro Offline
    Enthusiast

    Registered: 05/02/02
    Posts: 940
    Loc: Las Cruces, NM USA
    Understood, ai-uchi! Gravity doesn't really control the movement I described, you are right. Muscular contraction, yes, but only partially, as it is a natural motion of the body. Muscular contraction (particularly gamakku, an area of muscles of the lower back) controls the movement.

    Physics is something that I cannot delve very deeply into; it makes my head hurt. That is why I am a History student!

    It is important, however, to keep in mind that physics was not a field of study incorporated into the development of tode; only natural body motion. The movement I described previously has do do with natural body movement, like walking. Using gravity to describe it is just a way to apply a modern fieild of science to something much older. Physics can explain karate movement, but it doesn't need to always be used to. The gravity application is in the slight drop of the knee, which lowers the entire body's center of gravity, sending your body forward, disrupting the opponent's CG as well when the fist makes contact. It is about being mindful of one's own center of gravity. You essentially are in "balance in unbalance." You fall forward until your target stops you. This is in contrast to the modern, deadlocked way of executing technique. Gravity greatly controls the way we naturally move around on a daily basis, and karate movement was developed from that natural movement, so voila'!


    Edited by Alejandro (05/12/05 04:41 PM)
    _________________________
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    #139652 - 05/12/05 05:18 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: ai-uchi]
    medulanet Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 09/03/03
    Posts: 2142
    Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
    Ai-uchi, if you had understood my post you would have realized that I spoke about using enough force to first overcome gravity and then using the "fall" to assist in power generation. Karate is about using muscles, not over using and realizing that it is not an activity purely based on althletic ability. Martial science is different from sports science, unless your karate is simply a sport and nothing else. The key is using just enough energy to accomplish a goal. Believe me after playing college football, bench pressing 405, squating 525, and running in the 4.6s - 4.7s at 230 pounds I understand about high level athletics.

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    #139653 - 05/12/05 05:21 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: ai-uchi]
    hedkikr Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 02/28/05
    Posts: 2827
    Loc: Southern California, USA
    Ai-uchi
    Your credentials obviously confirm that you're an expert in your field. I think I might know what Alejandro is referring to.

    I've always said that walking is just controlled falling forward. w/o gravity, as we swing our rear foot forward it would reach its apex & continue its trajectory (an upward angle). It would mimic walking up a ramp.

    Because of gravity, you not only propel yourself forward but control your decent downwards. We can utilize both forces (forward momentum w/ gravity) to increase the impact of our punch. The simple action of rotating your hips is only part of the equasion - harness gravity & you punch w/ "your whole body".

    Also, Alejandro...you sound a lot like a Shukokai practitioner (not that there aren't universal truths). What do you think, Kin?


    Edited by hedkikr (05/12/05 05:22 PM)

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    #139654 - 05/13/05 05:52 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: hedkikr]
    kichigai Offline
    Newbie

    Registered: 04/28/05
    Posts: 6
    Loc: Lynn Haven, Fl
    I would like to comment on the topic at hand. Although I am a new member to this forum, I have some experience with the subject. As has been mentioned earlier, when teaching a new student, they are told to "put your hand here, then end up here." This is a method of teaching and not neccessarily the final or actual method of use and practice. The problem is that students think that the way they initially learned the technique(s) is also the way they must continue to practice them. However, as a student improves, their technique must change. Start big and whittle down to the essence of the movement. This of course take time, and many instructors are incapable of taking a student through the process, as they have not acheived this themselves. The use of gravity and koshi and gammaku and overall body alignment contributes to the ability to implement "whittled-down" technique, but requires a qualified teacher, effort and study by the student. Most karate students don't study what they practice - they just practice. This leads to stagnation and frustration. Back leg bent or straight? We can use both - or neither(!). Through proper study we can determine which one is best for different applications. Also, many people confuse practice and training with usage. A kata or movement may be a lesson or a training tool and not neccessarily the way you are going to apply the technique. Through study, we can find which one is which.

    Kichigai

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    #139655 - 05/13/05 11:09 AM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: Kintama]
    Neko456 Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 01/18/05
    Posts: 3260
    Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA

    1. Bringing closed fist up to shoulder before doing a gedan uke (or gedan barai). As mentioned this movement has various applications so its needed, maybe it should be explained earlier to clear up such misconception. Deflect and strike simutanelouly and trap and throw....


    2. Head snap to first look in the direction you are going to move next. Blind moves are risking, of course in Kata the movements are exzzagerated to build focus in basic. As we all no there is no posseing in real fighting. I was taught to flow natutally in movement. This exzzagerated movement wins trophies and builds focus.


    3. back leg is straightened in zenkutsu dachi. Karate-do teaches more then fighting it teaches fittness, this contiuned exercise build strenght in the legs and back. As the lunge does in exercise classes or Yoga. I've noticed that it in all the 30 or so systems I've studied. In use the back leg should only be locked for a fraction of a second at the movement of contact on a strike.


    4. open hand with thumb bent in. It mostly for safety until you are skilled you can hurt your fingers and thumb, without tuckng your thumb. Some of the ecletic systems teach the thumb out as you strike, I still teach thumb tucked because it doesn't matter its only used for a fraction of a second. Knife hand strike is a KHS in all system.


    5. open hand with fingers straight and together. Safety and in some soft systen this is not the case unless you are piercing/striking then fingers are stronger if held together.


    6. lift back heel slightly when punching. Almost every system does this to generate full torque in strikes or throws, so its not a wasted motion its body mechanics, its a fraction of a second flowing movement.


    7. full turn of fist to horizontal when punching. This is the longest punch that can be done, there are all lengths of punches that are taught from 6" to that one. The turning of the wrist also is thought to tear the skin as it is done in boxing and also helps in focusing on shorter interal strikes.


    8. guard hand is palm up during open hand strikes. This is system specfic not all systems strike or block this way, most soft/hard systems S&B with a check hand. But even this movement has various meaning it could be holding as you strike with the open and a palm up hold would work.


    9. crossing arms at midbody during blocks. Some of these motions have various meaning, 1 is the trapping wrist elbow break or lock using this crossing motion the other could be just a chest cover/guard done in boxing and other striking arts, Or simutaneous rear hand block, back knuckle strike.


    10. knifehand strikes starting at the head or from behind the head. Obviosuly done basically to build power, then various application like the high deflect, low hand grabbing grion, or block hook strike then strike the neck. Notice how all the big motions become shorter more direct 2 motion counter and attack. (Pulling the cord for the light to come on).


    11. long and low zenkutsu dachi. Again Karate-do has multiple purpose for practice this is done for fitness and form as in the Cat or Dog position in Yoga. It is predominate in ShotoKan and Taekwondo (Okinawan Goju its not practiced) remember that Funokoshi taught this for school yard fitness program and to his ex-enemies as a fitness program (as I am often reminded by the Kalia/Sialt teachers).

    The Japanese took these basic and turned into a forminable fighting system. The long stance is seen in fighting for split seconds as in extended lunging overhead attacks or rear hand upper cutting attacks.
    _________________________
    DBAckerson

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    #139656 - 05/13/05 03:05 PM Re: wasted or necessary movements? [Re: medulanet]
    ai-uchi Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/01/05
    Posts: 200
    Loc: harlow essex
    Quote:

    Ai-uchi, if you had understood my post you would have realized that I spoke about using enough force to first overcome gravity and then using the "fall" to assist in power generation. Karate is about using muscles, not over using and realizing that it is not an activity purely based on althletic ability. Martial science is different from sports science, unless your karate is simply a sport and nothing else. The key is using just enough energy to accomplish a goal. Believe me after playing college football, bench pressing 405, squating 525, and running in the 4.6s - 4.7s at 230 pounds I understand about high level athletics.




    sir how is martial science dierent from sport science - it uses movement of centre of gravity which i can explain. it's stance depending upon stance are devloped using science i.e. zenkutsudachi covers a large rectangular area btween the feet, which is why it is stable.

    itwe did not use science we would still be doing bunny hops as a warm up

    and regards competing at high level i know something about it as well as icompetd at european level for n.ireland in WKF, and is karate a sport - most assuredly but it is also an art, a way of life etc
    _________________________
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