14

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 of analyzing a kata for its self-defense applications. Right off the bat, you know this is not a block. And you can conclude that because it would be insane to ...


12

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 perspective (there are actually more, and I'll mention that later): Shuri-Te Naha-Te Japanese karate (Shotokan derivatives) The Shuri-Te and Naha-Te lineages come ...


10

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 position, but, there can be many. Do you kick with the front leg or the back? Is it a stepping behind or a stepping ahead? Is it a standing front leg kick? Are ...


8

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. Drawing Into Center Typically, when executing a 180 turn there will be a drawing in to center to recover balance. This drawing in will compensate for any ...


7

You will not telegraph the moment of your attack This is the same reason for Taekwondo, western boxing (think Ali), or karate. If you are in a static stance, you have to shift weight before being able to gain momentum and cover distance. If you bounce, you can subtly change your stance and attack each moment you are on the way down as soon as you touch the ...


4

It's a mistake to think of karate stances as static. They are not. When fighting you will be in a stance for a fraction of a second. Therefore there is no correct static weight distribution. Having said that, all stances have a purpose, and it's not always the same purpose. For example shiko/kiba dachi can be used to lower your body, e.g. applying an arm ...


4

The question is: What is the purpose of the hand salutation at the beginning of Tekki 1 (Naihanchi 1)? Here's a video showing the whole form: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VAkA5zAosC4 One possible answer is: It's a bear hug defense. There are other interpretations (bunkai) for this movement, but that one makes the most sense to me. If you're new to kata ...


4

That weird looking hammer-fist / straight punch combination is done for a reason and should remain that way in order for the bunkai to work. I'll explain below. Just to preface this, so you know where I'm coming from, I discuss the purpose of karate kata in depth in my answer in the following link, which I recommend reading: Why is more time dedicated to ...


3

but both alternatives seem to help It depends on the application of the "block". When you take a technique out of a kata, you also remove the context of its intended use. In general, I would take a look at how other styles perform the same kata; usually there is a reason that a particular body shape is used and without reference to what it's for, it's very ...


3

I am a current student of JKA Shotokan Karate. From my notes from the last Gassuku in Honbu Dojo, we went over front stance in fine detail for most of the week. The JKA teaches more of a 60% / 40% weight distribution, with the front of the knee in line with the end of the metatarsals (specifically from one instructor, a plumb line from the knee will hang at ...


2

"Should the weight be over the front knee in front stance? If so how much?" Short answer No. Please consider that the percentage of weight is the product of a few other factors. These factors will vary slightly based on body type. Just saying 70% weight over the knee is not doing the stance justice. - Make "your" front stance the correct length and width. ...


2

I'd like to broadly endorse Steve's answer, but also add some possible context. The kata actually starts at what the instructor calls "the oi", which is the ready posture referred to by Dungarth in the comments. So, what is this a guard against? To give a somewhat zen answer: everything and nothing. Or in other words, nothing specific. In this ...


1

Without knowing what art you're practicing or your goal for the kick (look good/classically proper technique vs. power/practicality?), I would blindly advise you to turn your hips more. You can get a lot out of a side kick with relatively inflexible hips by turning your pelvis enough to make it a kind of side-back kick. Speaking from experience. My hips are ...


1

The entire 2nd half of Heian/Pinan Sandan (from the turn, position 11 in the diagram) is a single application. The drill (kata applications are drills) is approximately as follows: The turn 180 indicates the opponent is behind you. Hands on hips pushing outwards you are pushing against a bear hug from the rear. The low stance, kiba dachi steps are you ...


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