Goju Ryu Karate Weakness and how to Fix Them

Within the Karate Fist is Great Spirit

I was teaching this guy once, it was Kenpo Karate, and he quit and went to Goju Ryu. Hmmm.
At first I thought it was my teaching, and maybe it was, but what it really was was that the guy wanted a more classical approach.
And, I am sure he didn’t want to take privates and spend money, he preferred the small monthly class fees.
I saw him a year later, he wasn’t very good. It wasn’t the fault of the system, he just wasn’t very good.
The upshot of this is that I began examining Goju. I found it interesting.
I found the two man drills quite nifty. I found a couple of things about the system disturbing.
Breathing is important, but you should base the system around it. You should install the breathing, make sure it was being done correctly, and just check it periodically. But in Goju they were breathing and breathing, and it seemed that breathing was more important than fighting. I know I’m overstating it, but the point is there.
And, I found a couple of other things that disturbed me. Specifically, the toe out horse stance.
I heard a high ranking master explain the toe out horse stance once: it makes the small of the back soft.
WTF?
Whoneeds a soft small of the back? What is the point of that? And I’ve never found an explanation for this. PerhapsI shall some day. Perhaps someone will comment on this blog and take me to task. That’s cool. If I learn something I certainly would welcome being taken to task. Until then, the excessive breathing, and the funky horse stance are things I’ve handled in Matrix Karate. In fact, you can take Matrixing and fix Goju ryu, if you wish. Nothign wrong with the system at heart, just needs some tweaks of physics. Anyway, checkout Monster Martial Arts, particularly Matrix Karate. Who knows, you might be the one to fix Goju ryu.

2 Responses to Goju Ryu Karate Weakness and how to Fix Them

  1. The breathing technique is emphasized in order to clear the mind IMO. Of course I’m a new-comer to GOJU, but as far as I can tell, there are very few if any weaknesses found within it. Unlike Tae Kwon Do, which as beautiful of a martial art as it is, is very inadequate in a kill-or-be-killed scenario.

  2. And as far as the footwork goes, GOJU emphasizes sliding footwork which generally acts as an offensive catalyst… constantly moving, shifting directions, NEVER stepping or hopping. It’s very difficult for a new-comer to become accustomed to. There are many different starting foot positions, and instead of writing GOJU off based on these two things, simply modify it to what YOU’RE comfortable with in a real life situation. That’s what I do.

    Of course, I still love TKD so it’s impossible for me not to mix the two elements in a serious confrontation. With GOJU, I feel as though if it ever fails me in life in self-defense, it’s due to my lack of discipline and technique, not the fundamentals of the art itself. In TKD, I feel as though I could have obtained a black belt over the course of many years and still feel VERY vulnerable in a ton of fighting scenarios.

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