bunkai-jutsu-Blog

Violence Never Solves Anything . . . . Really?

How many times have you heard well-meaning people say something like, “violence never solves anything”.

The idea that violence never solves anything has been has been around for a while in world of ever growing political correctness.  As a society, it’s a laudable goal to try and eradicate violence so that nobody has to be unnecessarily hurt and it is something that we should all work towards.  We’ll never achieve it of course as violence is part of the human condition and we are all capable of it given the right circumstances!  It’s only social training and conditioning that makes it unpalatable to us today.  With different conditioning, you can end up with the excesses of the Roman Games, where they’d take their children to watch a day’s sport!  The social conditioning (political correctness) goes so far in some cases, Continue reading “Violence Never Solves Anything . . . . Really?” »

How Important Is Discipline In Martial Arts?

This post was actually stimulated by a conversation with one of my former instructors, Sensei Graham Mead, a man from whom I learnt a great deal and who I hold in very high regard. Unfortunately Sensei Mead no longer teaches due to health issues, but an older tiger is still a tiger!

Since I started teaching regularly in 2012, Sensei Mead has honoured me with a few visits to my Dojo to see how my school is getting on.  During the recent conversation, discussing the deeper meanings of martial arts philosophy over a few beers (as one does) it became apparent that he was happy with the standards of my school and with what I was teaching; the only thing he had some doubt about was that he felt that the discipline was not strict enough.

This got me thinking, as any such comment from Sensei Mead should be taken seriously.

So here are my thoughts which I’ll share with you: Continue reading “How Important Is Discipline In Martial Arts?” »

Positioning For Multiple Assailants

I came across the video below from the London Wing Chun Academy which I thought was worth sharing as goes beyond style boundaries and should be of interest to anybody who is into real world self protection.  It talks about being aware of your surroundings and how to positional yourself when facing multiple opponents.

Anyway, I’m not going to tell you all about here, I’ll let you watch and see what I mean.  Please leave your feedback and comments below. Continue reading “Positioning For Multiple Assailants” »

The Bunkai Challenge: Iain Abernethy Vs Jesse Enkamp

This is a light hearted fun challenge from Jesse Enkamp to Iain Abernethy.  The rules are that each of them chooses a movement from any Kata and the other one has to give a practical street application to that movement.

The judges . . . . . well anybody watching the video can put there vote in the comments section (in Youtube) below the video.

I’ve trained with Iain Abernethy at several seminars and know him to be extremely good at what he does, knowledgeable about Karate concepts and history and author of a numerous books and dvd’s.  He’s also an intelligent and articulate man with a great sense of humour who is really approachable with no ego or pretentiousness about him at all despite being regarded as the best in the UK and a world leader for practical Karate Kata bunkai.

I’ve never met or trained with Jesse Enkamp, but I would like to at some point.  He runs his own blog KarateByJesse.com and is well informed, articulate, extremely enthusiastic and despite being Swedish I’d say he has a bit of British style self-depreciating sense of humour (which if you read this Jesse, is a compliment)!  🙂   He always refers to himself as the “Karate Nerd”; I guess for his nerdy attention to detail!

So please check out the video and leave your comment.  And as Jesse says at the end of the video, “after all, doesn’t matter who wins, the important part is that you learn something”.

Join the fun!

 

Best Street Fighting Style Vs Self Protection

How often do you see an advert or website claiming something like, “Best Street Fighting Style”, “Ultimate Street Fighting System”, “Scientific Street Fighting”, “The Art of Street Fighting”; or words to that effect.

Many martial arts, and I would say especially the more modern arts, like to emphasis how practical and effective they are and give themselves more kudos by emphasising “street fighting” over all other aspects of martial arts.  Some routinely position themselves as superior by deriding traditional martial arts; emphasising how they’ve taken out ritualistic movements, don’t waste time with Kata/forms/patterns, don’t march up and down punching/kicking the air, don’t train for scoring points at competitions, etc; they just (allegedly) get straight to the real 100% practical, functional, better than anything else that’s ever been street fighting system.  It’s amazing how many best systems there are out there  🙂

But one of the things that often makes me cringe, is the emphasis on “street fighting”!

Simply put, street fighting is illegal. Continue reading “Best Street Fighting Style Vs Self Protection” »

Is Stretching Important For Martial Arts?

There has been some debate over the years about stretching before training in martial arts and also for exercise in general.
I’ve heard some martial artists say that they don’t stretch before training as they’d rather train with the body that they have than the body they’d like to have!  Meaning, if you were to get involved in a physical altercation, you won’t have chance to warm up and stretch; so your body will not be in the same state for that altercation as it is when you’re training and you’ve had chance to conveniently warm up and stretch out!  They continue that if you want to stretch to improve your flexibility, do it when you get up in the morning, so that your body gets used to being like it all day.

To quote the UK National Health Service website: Continue reading “Is Stretching Important For Martial Arts?” »

Interview With Colin Wee, 6th Dan TKD Master, Blogger, Youtuber And Soon To Be Author

I’ve had the privilege of doing this interview with Master Colin Wee, 6th Dan, who has his own unique and practical approach to Taekwondo. He first come to my attention as a fellow blogger and has organised some blogging carnivals that I’ve taken part in. As well as being a great martial artist, he’s a natural leader and communicator; co-ordinating projects and organisations around the world.

He’s also opened minded to other styles and like the best martial artists is happy to learn from anybody who has something to teach, not just ring-fencing his style and shutting the others out. He’s equally happy to share his knowledge in an open and friendly manner without any ego. So I was very happy when he accepted my invitation to do an interview with me. His answers are quite detailed as Colin typically likes to give his best to whoever he is dealing with, be it a reader or student and it makes very interesting reading.

I was also able to find out more about his new book due to come out Continue reading “Interview With Colin Wee, 6th Dan TKD Master, Blogger, Youtuber And Soon To Be Author” »

Mind, Body & Spirit! What Does That Actually Mean?

The inspiration for this post was actually a page on my website for my own martial art classes in Midsomer Norton.  I have a “Why Karate?” page.  Admittedly this page is a bit biased towards Karate, but then it is my school that I’m trying to promote, not anybody else’s.  However, much of what I wrote on that page applies to all traditional martial arts, so I thought I’d expand upon it and share my thoughts here with the wider martial arts community!

Apart from the obvious need for self protection throughout history, there are many good reasons why martial arts have been around for thousands of years and are now practised by millions of people all over the world today.  They’re a great tool for development of mind, body and spirit!  But what does that actually mean.  “Mind, body and spirit” is a phrase that we often hear associated with martial arts, but it is not often defined in any depth.  It’s often a throw away line on promotional material, then seldom talked about again after somebody actually joins up! Continue reading “Mind, Body & Spirit! What Does That Actually Mean?” »

Comparison Of Bare Knuckle Boxing/Pugilism & Traditional Martial Arts

I was a little intrigued recently when I came across the picture below on Facebook depicting a bare knuckle prize fight that took place in 1877.  What intrigued me was that the punch being delivered looks a lot more like a punch that we’d find in Karate/Taekwondo/some styles of Kung Fu, than it does a modern boxing punch!  The back is straight, head up, legs are practically identical to our forward stance, hips turned square on and shoulder not turned in as much as a modern boxers.  Even the non-punching hand is back on the hip (hikite) like a Karate/TKD punch.


Here is the description that came with it! Continue reading “Comparison Of Bare Knuckle Boxing/Pugilism & Traditional Martial Arts” »

Kiai/Kihap/Chi Shout – Is It Really Necessary?

Many martial arts, especially the Oriental ones include the practice of shouting at certain points in training.  Japanese styles call it Kiai, Korean styles call it Kihap.  I don’t know what the Chinese word for it is, but I have trained with some who simply called it Chi Shout.  For simplicity, I’m just going to stick the Japanese notation of Kiai (as I’m primarily a Japanese stylist and it’s the version I’m most familiar with)!

First of all, what is it?  Very simplistically, it’s a shout that comes from contraction of the diaphragm and feels like it’s coming all the way from belly.  A shout that comes just from the voice-box, sounds more like scream.  I have a simple way of teaching this, especially to kids.  Though it’s not the nicest of explanations, it does make it Continue reading “Kiai/Kihap/Chi Shout – Is It Really Necessary?” »