Posted On:12/29/2002 9:17am
I'm a yellow belt in wado ryu and I've been getting a little discouraged at karate practice lately because of all the form training we do.
Especially kata training and those fancy cat stances are starting to annoy me. I feel like I'm trained to become some kind of martial ballet dancer instead of a fighter.
Ofcourse, I realise that learning a style as technically refined as karate, like learning an instrument, will simply take much time and that the practice will probably pay off in the end.
This is where my question comes in. Are things like spear hand blocks/strikes and difficult stances really essential to becoming a good fighter (be it self defense or competitive) or are they merely passed on to students for the sake of maintaining some traditional forms of fighting that do have value yet take years or decades to master and will likely never be used by the student?
Everytime some "fancy" technique is being taught during kihon routines I can't help but feeling its somewhat silly and more importantly, a waste of precious training time. (some trainings we simply dont get to free spar because of the slow nature of kata tuition, leaving me wholly unsatisfied)
Ofcourse, the nature of karate is self defense and at it's heart is the one shot - one kill philosophy, making technical perfection absolutely necessary.
I do get a lot of satisfaction from mastering a technique and feeling all loose and quick, which is what wado is all about, but I do sometimes feel jealous of those kickboxing guys who can just punch away at a bag for hours and spar all the time(it is the fitness aspect that attracted me to the martial arts in the first place).
Anyway, I'm drifting away from my question.
What I want to know is, how important is it to learn the tricky bits in the kata and difficult stances/strikes? Am I just in a beginner's dip, or should I perhaps contemplate doing a less "arty" art, where I'll get a good workout every session.
I know theres a lot of questions and unknown factors involved here, but any feedback is appreciated.
Posted On:12/29/2002 10:59am
Style: JKD, BJJ
Give it a minute. You're gonna get "feedback". I cannot comment on karate myself (being ex-TKD), so I leave it to others.
"I'm not tense; just terribly, terribly alert."
Monkey Ninjas! Attack!
Such as thou art, sometime was I.
Posted On:12/29/2002 11:18am
Style: Brazilian Jiujitsu
I have no experience with Karate as a practitioner, but I spent a good amount of time studying some external Chinese martial arts and we used stances that were similar to some Karate cat stances. I have seen some variation. The Goju-Ryu cat stance seems pretty ridiculous. One thing I would tell you is to remember that none of these stances are meant to be static-ever. Most TMA schools fail desperately to teach proper footwork and mobility, though they spend A LOT of time on holding stances. When I was training Chinese martial arts, I had the luck to be personal friends with one of our school's top fighters and intructors. When I was frustrated with some nonsense intricacy like a block or some such he would tell me something like, "**** that ****. It's just a slap." As far as I am concerned, there is a yawning gap between the elementary orthodoxy and the intermediate and advanced orthodoxies. Because most people never make it to the level of advanced, there are a lot of faulty assumptions about TMA's out there. I don't blame this on the students, TMA's need to bridge that gap. My most recent art is Taekkyon, a Korean sport that has NO stances or kata, but teaches footwork that emphasizes mobility and fluidity and sensitivity to range. There is no curriculum gap. If you like your school/style for a host of other reasons, my recommendation would be for you to ask these questions of the most reasonable and practical minded instructor there. If they don't want to answer, consider leaving. Dont' be satisfied with some foolish demonstration that if Sensei Y attacks another student or teacher out of the orthodox stance, he succeeds tremendoulsy. I always found that incredibly insulting, especially when it's clear that advanced practitioners do not, and SHOULD NOT, fight the way the elementary style is taught.
**The most miraculous power that can verifiably be attributed to "chi" is its ability to be all things to virtually all people, depending on what version of the superstition they are attempting to defend at any given moment.**
Normally, I'd say I was grappling, but I was taking down and mounting people, and JFS has kindly informed us that takedowns and being mounted are neither grappling nor anti grappling, so I'm not sure what the **** I was doing. Maybe schroedinger's sparring, where it's neither grappling nor anti-grappling until somoene observes it and collapses the waveform, and then I RNC a cat to death.----fatherdog
Posted On:12/29/2002 11:37am
What the hell is Wado-Ryu?
No dis but I never heard of it?
Posted On:12/29/2002 11:42am
It's one of the four biggest styles in Japan and its founder wanted to blend a quick, defensive type of karate with jiujutsu throws and locks.
Wado is said to be the fastest style.
Posted On:12/29/2002 11:43am
Style: Aikido and Judo
Fights like Girl, like JKDChick said you are going to get BIG feed back.
As a TMAist and one of a hand full on this forum, you have to look at what you are being taught.
Are Kata ment for fighting? NO
Should Neko Ashi Dachi(Cat Stance) be static? NO
WHY DO YOU DO IT? It builds strength in the legs.
The same in Shotokan like Zankutsu Dachi, do they actually fight in that stance? Only the bad ones.
Also, you are only a Yellow belt. If the style is not for you then it is not for you. But you cant expect miricals especially in the TMA. To develope you will have to give it time and train hard.
The Wastrel, hit the nail right on the head.
Dont be discouraged and stick at it.
Yours in Aiki.
"Those who are skilled in combat do not become angered,
those who are skilled at winning do not become afraid.
Thus the wise win before the fight, while the ignorant fight to win." -O Sensei Ueshiba
Posted On:12/29/2002 11:49am
thanks wastrel, I'm gonna adress my sensei about this. taekkyon sounds great BTW. Unfortunately the MA schools in my small town are limited to TKD and karate.
Posted On:12/29/2002 11:51am
When you say quickest is it ground as well as pound or more of a stand-up game?
Posted On:12/29/2002 11:58am
Kensai, I do actually believe this style is for me, especially the high stances and circular features of this type of karate attract me.
Also it's good to be taught some locking and throwing techniques to make the artist a more complete fighter.
The strenghtening argument will keep me satisfied for now. I'll probably be taught to use neokashi dacchi flexibly in a sparring situation sometime in the future.
thanks for the replies
Posted On:12/29/2002 12:00pm
tart do I'm not sure what you mean by that but from what I've read, the style does lose a bit of strenght as opposed to the slower, more rigid forms like shotokan.
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