Fundamentals are fun – 1/3/09 – Saturday Karate class

This was the first class of the new year for us and it was one of the best classes that I have had.  We also had a special guest again, Dr. Kathy Bailey.

Back to basics…

Sensei Gatch had a talk with all of us before we got down to work.  He asked that all of us bring a notebook to class each week and write down what we learned and what we are told to work on to improve our Karate outside of class.

Sensei had mentioned that we need to get our fundamentals in order.  He was told that many of the students at the recent exams need to improve their Karate fundamentals if they want to get promoted.  With that said, he gave us an intense workout.  He also said that we need to work on our Japanese too.

Kokutsu dachi (backstance)…

We started with a partner and one of us had to take off our belt.  We both got into a back stance and held the belt like a tug-o-war.  The idea was to get low into the backstance and keep the stress on the back leg in order to make it stronger.  My leg felt like it was on fire so the drill certainly worked as intended.  I could hardly stand up to switch legs for the second part of the drill.

The next part of the drill was moving foward, in a backstance with knife hand block.  Sensei wanted us to move forward and make sure that our knees came together and our foot moved straight forward.  In order to do this, we need to pull mostly with the front leg and only push forward, a little, with the back leg.  Just pushing from the back leg cannot generate the speed moving forward anywhere near as much as pulling with the front leg.

Kicking for everyone…

Sensei Gatch also mentioned that working on the side thrust kick will improve most other side kicks.  He had us put one hand on the wall and put our leg in the front snap position.  He then had us turn our hip over but not kick.  This opened up the hip for what was to come.  We then did a side thrust kick to his count.  Once we got near the end, he had us hold our kick out longer and finally, for the last rep, he had us hold it for about 30 seconds.

I am hoping that we have more classes like this one.

About doug
Doug is a Shotokan Karate student that enjoys sharing his Karate training experiences with everyone. He is a Computer Consultant, an ISSA Certified Personal Trainer, blogger and a freelance writer..

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