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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 ...
slugster's user avatar
  • 7,872
18 votes

Karate doesn't provide defense against wrestlers and MMA fighters. Or does it?

The short answer is: No, karate does not train people to deal with wrestlers. The long answer is that karate does have grappling built into it, but it tends to be of the stand-up variety and only for ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar
14 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar
13 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar
12 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Sardathrion - against SE abuse's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

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....
Dave Liepmann's user avatar
11 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar
11 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 ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

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)...
Bankuei's user avatar
  • 8,393
10 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Andy Jeffries's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Dave Liepmann's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Philip Klöcking's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Andrew Jay's user avatar
  • 4,141
10 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Andrew Jay's user avatar
  • 4,141
10 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Andrew Jay's user avatar
  • 4,141
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 ...
Sardathrion - against SE abuse's user avatar
9 votes

How to condition knuckles?

I second coinbird's motion: don't do this. There is a theory called Wolff's Law, which is a medical concept first studied by a German surgeon Julius Wolff back in the 1800's, and he found that ...
Andrew Jay's user avatar
  • 4,141
9 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Dungarth's user avatar
  • 2,225
9 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Philip Klöcking's user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

Are there "right" and "wrong" kata bunkais?

This is a good question. To paraphrase, are there official / definitive kata bunkai, or are people free to interpret their kata however they like? The answer is: The latter, mostly. First, Okinawan ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Macaco Branco's user avatar
8 votes

How do I achieve "gi whip"

One important thing, at least for arm movement whips, is proper technique, namely rotating your forearm. For example, one of the first things that new students get taught is the "rising block&...
Amorphous Blob's user avatar
8 votes

Should I wear a cup for sparring?

Absolutely. There's no reason not to; I've never had it interfere with kicking. I suppose some brands could be disagreeable to your particular anatomy, e.g., I had one once which was too "shallow&...
Amorphous Blob's user avatar
7 votes

Karate and Judo?

Techincally you can combine any martial arts, but it will be difficult to excel at either of them, unless they're really similar. Different arts often require opposite reflexes which can (will) be ...
Tingolfin's user avatar
  • 199
7 votes

Why are traditional karate gis white?

Karate adopted the white uniforms of judo in the early 20th century for two complementary reasons: to increase its appeal to mainland Japan already familiar with its use in Judo as part of the ...
brazofuerte's user avatar
  • 8,212
7 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 ...
Sardathrion - against SE abuse's user avatar
7 votes
Accepted

What is the purpose of slow movements in poomsae / kata / taolu for?

The answer to this question entirely depends on the form and the history behind it. Most forms have changed in small and often big ways since they were first created. Sometimes movements are repeated ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar
7 votes

What causes stiff body while kicking? (Lack of flexibility or balance)

You've given us a one word diagnosis - "stiff" - but with only that it's hard to guess what your instructor means. If you're confused by the description, then whatever you're doing wrong is probably ...
Tony D's user avatar
  • 4,170
7 votes

Is modern martial arts effectiveness intentionally reduced?

Absolutely. Though I would say it's the case for modern "traditional" martial arts. There are some martial arts that have not been affected. Here are the main two reasons for what you're seeing (I use ...
coinbird's user avatar
  • 1,801
7 votes
Accepted

Why do people wear frayed black belts?

People actually sell belts that have been distressed, especially black belts that have their color faded so much that they can almost pass for a dirty white belt. Many martial artists distress their ...
Steve Weigand's user avatar

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