I’m going to tell you three reasons exactly why Classical Karate Techniques Don’t Work. Some of these reasons you’re going to be able to fix. Some of them you’re not.
The most obvious Karate Bunkai, and I’m talking about the ones taken directly from the form, don’t work is that they are poser. A Poser technique is one wherein the attacker makes his attack, then holds his pose while the defender makes the technique work. Of course, that’s not really making a technique work.One can go through his martial art and toss out poser techniques, but therein lies a huge problem.
The reason you don’t want to throw out posers ties directly into the second reason bunkai often prove unworkable, these poser tricks are often an evolution to a technique that does work. In fact, while there are many posers that should be tossed, the fact is that many of the posers lead directly into the techniques that are so Fng unstoppable it is unbelievable. Remember, one of the original talents that the originators of Karate had was the ability to disarm a samurai. That takes some kind of technique.
And we come to the third reason, which ties back to the second and first reason. People don’t understand the basics. They don’t take the time to look into the poser techniques until they understand the higher evolutions of art. Actually, when I say basics, I mean basic/basics, the reasons underlying the basics. Heck, when I watch some classical karate classes it is obvious that many instructors don’t even know that the basic/basics exist.
The point of this blog has been to point out three reasons Karate is sometimes less than workable, and to help you deal with them. The unfortunate news, as you will find out when you start shuffling your posers around and trying to eliminate them, you can’t just throw them out. Throwing a low ranking poser out will toss out the higher evolution technique that really works.
This is where Matrixing comes in. Matrixing doesn’t just throw out the exact posers that should be thrown out, it restructures the art, reconnects the lower evolution moves with the higher evolution moves. But it doesn’t do this for you, it gives you the knowledge so that you can do the restructuring. No art, no method, has ever done this before; there has never been anything like Matrixing in the martial arts on this planet. Ever. But if you use Matrixing, you’ll be able to resurrect the power of the original Karate, make all those Classical Karate Techniques work, and without destroying your art in the process.
This is an absolutely fascinating win concerning Karate Kata, as the fellow is going through what I had gone through, and he came up with some core concepts for how to Study Karate forms.
Thank you for being so open and accessible. I have for many years enjoyed your articles and columns. I always thought it was funny that they had you in there making traditionalists mad and then Dave Lowry in the next column making the eclectics (artists) mad and the both of you would generate more readership and letters to the editor over your subject matter. If you’ll recall your article on the basic form you created that you referred to as house. I added the mirror image to the other side and created a second one based on the same structure and have taught these as the first two katas in my system. If you cut them in half (or back in half as the first one goes) they are great to also teach ADD kids and mentally handicapped people. Thank you for that article. Too many of the “grand poobas” these days believe they are too high and mighty to speak to someone if they are not this rank or in good with them somehow.?Take care!? David Woods
You do your forms reverse side, backwards (reversing motion, not just doing the sequence backwards), and any other way you can think of. It’s not matrixing, but it is pretty darned powerful. You’ll find some strange things going on in your mind, and you start to undo the ‘robotic’ traditions you may have absorbed.
There’s a free karate book going over some of the forms David was working on at one of my sites.
We memorize, you see. We memorize the karate kata, we memorize the Karate technique, and we monkey see monkey do without ever thinking about it.
The proof is that you are saying, ‘Oh, I know about that.’ Everybody says that, until they come across Matrixing, and then the light goes on. That’s why so many of these wins are about people scrambling to readjust their systems once they have matrixing technology at hand.
There is knowing about, and there is knowing, and that is the difference between somebody working out, even after multiple degrees of black belt, and somebody who has found the true art. Here’s a snippet of me doing a karate kata. The techniques are not memorized, they are not practiced, they are created on the spot. They don’t look polished because they are real, which is a very difficult concept for some people to understand.
Here’s a great win.
“After studying the material and applying it to my art of Chinese Kenpo Karate, I feel that its concepts and principles have truly been a benefit as they have given me the key to understand thoroughly what I have been mindlessly practicing for all these years. No more monkey – see, monkey – do karate, I now have the keys to mastering every technique from the most basic, to the most advanced. I have actually coined a phrase for my students; ‘knowing a technique comes from understanding ‘how’ it is performed (outward mechanics). Mastering a technique comes from understanding why a technique is performed and all of the concepts and philosophies involved to make it work’. Mastery is something that is seldom taught in today’s martial arts schools.”
When you understand the difference between ‘knowing about,’ and can move into ‘knowing,’ then we’re on the same wavelength.
It’s true, I wrote articles for Inside Karate in the 90s. I actually started writing in the 80s, and my last article came out in Inside Kung Fu two months ago, so I’ve been a writer for the mags for near 30 years. Here’s a win I got in the mail one day.
“I used to read your articles in Inside Karate and was excited when I found your web site.” RV
It shouldn’t surprise me, I mean, I used to take note of the writer’s names and the kind of articles they wrote, but I figured it was a writer thing. I was interested in the competition.
What I used to do was look at the magazine a year after it came out. I went down the subjects, and if any subject hadn’t been written about for a few months, I wrote a fresh article on it. That’s how I avoided writing the same old same old. I knew the editor liked those kinds of articles, and I knew he hadn’t seen one for a while, and at my heyday I used to sell 90% of the articles I turned in.
What was nice was it got to the point where I was accepted, and I could write about anything I wanted. People actually said nice things about me. Huh! Anyway, try that gimmick if you feel like being a writer for a magazine, I know Inside Karate is gone, but there are others out there.
BTW, you can pick up a free book with some Martial Arts kata in it at one of my websites.