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24 votes

Do I have a bad Wing Chun teacher and is Wing Chun worth it?

Wing chun doesn't have to be bad for this school to be bad for you. It sounds like you're not comfortable there. I think you should stop training with these people.
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18 votes

Keep old rank or start afresh?

Your kyu rank is relative to the style (and dojo) that you practiced at when you were 15. Realistically, no matter what the style 9th kyu is barely more than beginner. I'd suggest you start again ...
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17 votes
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Should I sign up for my school if I notice inexperience black belts?

First, about children's ranks vs. adult's ranks... Child black-belts are not uncommon in the world of Karate and Taekwondo. But when there are child black-belts, they are generally awarded that rank ...
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15 votes
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Do martial arts encourage bad posture habits?

I'm not convinced it was martial arts that caused your bad posture. There are other potential causes. Beware the post hoc, ergo propter hoc fallacy. But sure, martial arts can cause bad posture. ...
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14 votes
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Name and meaning of stance where you stand with fists on hips?

Your intuition is correct. It is a very vulnerable position. That should give you a clue about its bunkai. For those that don't know, Bunkai is the Okinawan karate term used to refer to the practice ...
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13 votes

How do I make sure students refer to me by my title during class

So for those that don't know, "Dai Sempai" is a kind of rank or recognition that is given to the head student in the class. This is typically the student with the highest rank who has spent the most ...
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13 votes
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To what extent does height give an advantage in any type of fight?

Height gives a considerable advantage to striking martial arts. The first and most obvious advantage is that height means you can reach out further than your opponent, meaning you can hit him before ...
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12 votes
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Pursuing Tae Kwon Do and Karate at same time

I'll second some of the responses here and say that unless you're gifted, you probably won't be able to avoid confusing Kyokushin with Taekwondo. The stances, the techniques, the level of force, what ...
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12 votes
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Etiquette when changing from karate to jiu-jitsu

There is a famous zen story, one of the variation is this… Nan-in, a Japanese master during the Meiji era (1868-1912), received a university professor who came to inquire about Zen. Nan-in ...
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12 votes
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Styles of Karate

Thank you for the question. It's actually quite a good one to ask, because a lot of people assume all karate is basically the same. And that's not true. There are 3 main branches of karate in my ...
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11 votes
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Karate and Judo?

Wrestling and kyokushin karate go together fine. Most martial arts that cover different disciplines (e.g. striking/wrestling, or punching/kicking) work fine together because they complement each other....
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11 votes
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Why do we teach unrealistic bunkai?

The answer is simple: Because the vast majority of karate is taught by instructors who don't know what realistic bunkai is. And that's because their instructors were never taught it. And their ...
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10 votes

Do I have a bad Wing Chun teacher and is Wing Chun worth it?

Do you have a bad Wing Chun teacher? I don't know, as it really does not sound at all like Wing Chun. Going back to its roots, Wing Chun is actually named for one of the early female practitioners ...
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  • 201
10 votes
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How do you harden the outer side of your thighs?

You can't actually "harden" soft tissue through conditioning. You can: A) increase the muscle strength and density (though strength training), which gives you better ability to absorb/resist hits B)...
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  • 8,553
10 votes
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Advice on wearable technology during MMA class to alert me of critical phone calls (on-call 24/7)

I'm a Taekwondo instructor. I would happily make an exception for a special case like this, put your phone on the loudest volume, somewhere at the side of the class where it's easily hearable. Even ...
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10 votes
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How did the modernization of Karate weaken its self-defense applications?

First, it's unclear how useful Okinawan karate was for self-defense prior to its transformation under Funakoshi, Itosu, et al., especially in comparison to modern methods. Second, the major factors ...
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10 votes
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Why do the 2020 Summer Olympics have Kata but not Poomsae?

There are several reasons, but in my opinion, they are somewhat of a cop-out - and yet a relief. Keep in mind, getting into the Olympics is a herculean task: there needs to be a federation ...
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10 votes
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Why don't we wear shoes in karate?

In Japanese styles, it is unquestionably about cleanliness. They don't wear outside shoes in one's home, and zori are used for that purpose. But zori make it somewhat difficult to train in, and as ...
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  • 3,886
10 votes
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How to do a good yoko geri (side kick)

You didn't give a specific problem you're having, so, it's hard to say what might be the problem. There are two primary elements to the kick: the chamber and the thrust. There is your starting ...
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  • 3,886
10 votes

Keep old rank or start afresh?

Firstly, whatever you learned fifteen years ago might be muddled by age and memory lose. I would not rely on it. Secondly, since it was a child's rank and not adult, the syllabus might have been ...
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9 votes
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If Karate is supposed to be way of the empty-handed, then why does Gosoku-ryū use weapon katas?

Just because a karate style may include weapon katas does not mean that the name "karate" is invalidated. You can think of Kobudo as an extension, or sister art(s) to Karate. Okinawan weapon arts ...
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9 votes

Child with attention difficulties in my karate class

Figuring out if he either wants to be there or is forced to go by his parents is important. If the latter, then there is not much you can do about it. He might get better if he has something that ...
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9 votes
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Why don't karateka practice ground-fighting and takedown defense?

TL;DR - Karate itself doesn't include much grappling because ancient karatekas were expected to be proficient grapplers and would regularly cross-train in both karate and wrestling. Karate was ...
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  • 2,247
9 votes

Main differences of Karate & Taekwondo

I won't get too academic about it, so I'll give you the layman's summary. And for the purpose of comparison, I'll emphasize the difference between Shotokan karate and Taekwondo, since Taekwondo ...
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9 votes
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Why doesn't Muay Thai use the Karate/Taekwondo front snap kick?

It comes down to the same reasons which hold for the different roundhouse kick: power and dmg vs. speed and predictability. Thai fighters have a different goal compared to karate and TKD fighters as ...
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8 votes

What is the most effective method for the roundhouse kick?

What is the most effective method for the roundhouse kick? You've got a one-adjective criteria there, and a vague one: effective. Overall effectiveness might reasonably be defined as what helps you ...
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  • 4,210
8 votes

Shotokan Karate front stance - weight is over the front knee? Or centre?

Fair disclosure, I do not currently practice Shotokan, but I do practice Tae Kwon Do which has a front stance and requires 180 degree turns. There may be technical differences that I am unaware of. ...
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8 votes
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Solar Plexus: how to reinforce it?

The solar plexus is exactly a main goal in martial arts because there are basically no muscles above it that can be trained. The abs begin just below it, but well trained abs help to reduce the area ...
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8 votes

Is it appropriate to display the dojo kun at home?

Yes Of course it is appropriate. I am struggling to find a reason why not to do it if you are keen on it. It is a piece of nice calligraphy which would be enough to display as an art piece ...
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8 votes
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Kiai, the Hara and Dantian (etymology and philosophy)

Ki (気) does mean "energy" or "mood", but the A (合) is just a shout of enthusiasm (Korean does use the energy+join setup with K'ihap), so no, there's nothing mystical about it any more than a sports ...
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