Posts tagged Karatedo
Self-Actualisation: Karate's Obvious Secret

For many, stepping into the Dojo and donning the white and black is the continuation of that elusive search for ‘perfection of character’, better technique, attainable skill and the mental calm that proceeds the enduring trial for the session.

From the first Kata to the many learnt thereafter Karate contains no secrets, only things not yet understood, left open to the imagination of the practitioner.

On the surface of the Karate training, to those not ready to receive the fullness of what Karate teaches, the physical and mental improvement is the goal. Beyond that, however, lies the greatest lesson for all who would strive on.

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Aiming for the Next Grade

In Karate we are seeing a renaissance so to speak of the disregard or downplay of achieving grades.

Some schools are reverting back to keeping simply a three belt system, White, Brown and finally Black.

This is the same belt grading system as was devised by Jigoro Kano and subsequently adopted by Gichin Funakoshi.

However, since the introduction of coloured belts in 1935 by Judoka Kawaishi Mikinosuke onwards there grew a desire to increase testing and therefore increase belt colours.

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Who put the 'Bu' in Karate-Dō? Part 2 of 2

In last week’s article I explored some of the history of the development of Karate and of Budo culture in Japan.

In part 2 I hope to get to the point in why I began writing such a body of text by exploring the matter of what we understand as "traditional" karate practice, where it fits into the changes made in Okinawa, and what we perceive as being Japanese.

But firstly, a little clearing up to do.

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Who put the 'Bu' in Karate-Dō? Part 1 of 2

The Bu in question is the term for Warrior, as in Budō - Way of the Warrior. If you have trained in a Japanese style of Karate, even some Okinawan styles you will have heard this term at some point.

It is often associated with a sense of learning “traditional” Karate. I use these quotation marks for reasons that I will go into.

But first, let us take a step back in time….

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How I Came to Okinawa

There I was, living in Edinburgh under the grey wintering skies, and whilst nestled at my mum’s in the beautiful Aberdeenshire countryside, a place I had known well all my life and was frequently awed by the scenic beauty; it was Christmas and I was still mulling over a big decision.

A month previously an Email had zipped through from Jesse of Karatebyjesse.com giving details about a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity

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A Very Okinawan Dojo Experience

I spent over 20 years practicing Shotokan at various Dojo across the UK and Australia, and many were similar in their breakdown of practice. Line-up, bow, warm-up, Kihon, Kumite, Kata, warm-down/stretching or simply sit, meditate and bow to finish.

Having experienced a few different Dojos I'd like to give you my experience of practice in an Okinawan Dojo.

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