Rants, Ramblings and Nothingness

A messy collection of random stuff really!!

Karate is Primarily a Self Defense!!

If we compare this article by Goodin Sensei and karate that over-emphasizes on point-sparring tournament style training, it is actually something happening in many dojo. I won’t really go deeper about point-sparring, with its pros and cons. It is good in one way, but it is also bad if the training focused only to win points, tournaments, medals or trophies. Karate is first and foremost a martial art. It’s primary intent is for the practitioner to defend him/herself. The physical, mental, mind, recreational, spiritual, social and some other benefit that results from the training is actually, at least for me, secondary. The ability to pacify the opponent in just a few seconds is essential. When a fight started, it will not last for minutes, hours or even days. It might even take one or two second for it to be finished. A blink of an eye or even a hesitation when we execute the technique in a real confrontation can cost us our life!! That’s why kata and the understanding of the kata itself is very important. Kata is like a deciphered military message, it is meaningless for people that doesn’t know how to intepret it, but the message might contain something that decides winning or losing. Kata is also like a time capsule, all the wisdom of the old about self defense, that was forged and collected during those rough times, is accumulated inside the kata. It contain essential techniques, very efficient, effective, battle tested self defense movements. It’s a treasure for us the newer generation. As Goodin Sensei said in the excellent article, if our technique is not good enough to defend ourself, there must be something wrong, and we have to strive to correct it.


May 22, 2008 - Posted by | Karate, Martial Arts | , , , , ,


  1. Good point. In a self defense situation we may not have time to think about reacting and should just REACT.

    Comment by Marks | May 23, 2008 | Reply

  2. I agree, the techniques must become a second nature to us, delivered to the right targets, automatically. Thanks for visiting my blog Marks! Your blog has so many interesting things to look at, I must check on it regularly 🙂

    Comment by fuermischung | May 24, 2008 | Reply

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