Better horse stance means better Karate – 3/2/09 – Monday Karate class

Sometimes it is not what is said, it is how it is said.  Today was one of those enlightening moments that don’t come around often enough.

Good tension…

Sensei had us start class working on our stances by going through some of the Heian katas.  When doing a blocking stance, Sensei wants us to have our leg tension to the outside and when doing a strike our tension needs to be to the inside.  When the tension is on the outside, the back leg is slightly bent and the back hip is open and in a striking stance, the back leg is straight, the knee is facing down and the hip is closed.  We did Heian Shodan and Heian Nidan paying all attention to the tension of our legs and the position of our hips.  Sensei also had us make sure that we pushed the pelvis up and tightened the ab muscles at the end of each move.

Many good things can come from a good horse stance…

Sensei Brien shared an interesting lesson tonight.  He had made a comment that if your horse stance is good, your front stance will be good, your back stance will be good, your roundhouse kicks will be better, your side thrust kicks and your Karate will be better in general.  There is a lot of good things related to horse stances.

Sensei had us work on a tough horse stance drill.  We moved into a horse stance and then stepped to the side and brought our feet together and then pushed back into the horse stance.  Sensei wanted us to push into the stance and lock our muscles to stop ourselves.  When doing the horse stance, Sensei said that our gi pants should have a line across the front when the proper tension is applied, the knees need to be pushed out as far as possible and the gluteus and ab muscles need to be engaged fully for the stance to be correct.

This explanation about tightening the gluteus muscles really hit home for me.  I have been told this in about 10 different ways over the last few years but this small little change in words gave me what I needed to finally get it.

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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