Karate is a form of martial arts that originated in Okinawa, Japan. It is a philosophical practice and teaches ethical principles to its students. Karate can be taught as a combat sport or as a part of self-defense training. But an aspect of karate in Japanese style training often involves perseverance, fearlessness, and virtue and leadership skills.
Karate training is divided into three forms: the basics, forms and sparring. We will focus more on how to learn karate techniques on the basic part. Kihon, the Japanese term for basics/fundamentals, is the most important aspect of karate because it serves as a solid foundation before you can proceed to the other forms of karate. Kihon techniques are implemented prior to sparring; they serve as a backbone to mastery and improvement of each student.
Tying The Karate Obi/Belt
To learn karate techniques the basic way, you must first know how to tie your karate belt. Guard it with your life because the obi symbolizes your ranking in karate. Your ranking can be graded through the color of the obi. For the beginners, a white obi is usually worn.
To tie your obi, you must first place it on the center part of your stomach with both ends hanging on the floor. Gently wrap it across your waist starting from your front towards your back. Cross the obi behind your back, keeping the obi flat against your body.
Wrap both ends of your obi around sides of your waist, gearing towards the front end. Cross the obi again across your stomach and wrap the end that originates on your right side. The left end of the obi must be bent and pull it down to the center. Finally, loop the bottom end towards the top end.
Making A Proper Fist
A Seiken, the Japanese term for proper fist, is often the first to be taught to prevent potential injury to the knuckles. This serves as one of the powerful elements of karate. Try to curl fingers so that the tip of each fingers touch the hands. Then fold your thumb down across the middle part of index finger and middle finger.
Always keep thumb curled to protect the hand. To strike blows with your Seiken, you have to keep the wrist straight. Knuckles of index finger and middle finger should be the only surfaces to be hit when striking a blow using the Seiken.
Observing Proper Stance
To learn karate techniques, one must always observe proper stance. This is important because it provides balance to the student whenever he wants to kick or strike a direct blow. There are a lot of stances that are taught, depending on the advancement of the mastery of each student.
There are closed foot and open foot stances that start with feet together and end with feet pointing outward at a 60 degree angle. HeikoDachi stance depends on the width of your shoulders. While Soto Hachiji-Dachi is similar to HeikoDachi, except that toes are pointed out in a 40 degree angle.