Hit the pad with a high outward block

For today’s class, Sensei had us spend half the class on working on our form and the other half working on hitting the pads with a technique that we normally do not use on the pads.

Check your technique

We started out doing slow motion punches while standing. The key is to rub both arms on our body when punching.  After the slow punches came harder punches and making sure that we tighten our stomach and squeeze the floor with each punch. Putting all this together and using the entire body makes the movements as strong and efficient as possible.

Next came slow punches, fast punches and all blocks from a horse stance using the same parameters as above.

Then we moved into a front stance, starting with our reverse hand out we did various blocks. The key here is to pull the draw hand back fast and move from the hips. Instead of pushing with the front hip, pull the back hip back fast. This action of pulling the hip back makes a lot of sense because you have to open your hips to do the blocks.

We did the same starting with reverse hand out again, but this time we did a block, then a reverse punch, and a block again. The idea here was to get the hip action of opening, closing and opening the hips again.

Hit the pad with a high outward block

Next, we found a partner and a pad and worked on manji uke (high outward block and low downward block) hitting the pad with the top arm high outward block. I don’t remember ever doing this drill in the past but it was a good way to learn how that technique actually feels when hitting an object. Even though it is a block, using power and hip movement to strike the pad gave a feeling of how effective that movement can be.

Attention to Karate kihon and kata details

We then put the pads away and did the manji uke moving forward. The key was to reach with both hands and ensure that we brought our knees together when moving.

For the next drill, we started in a front stance with our hands in the assisted block position and did the next move, from Heian Godan, where you do the double open hand movement (low level open left hand strike with sweeping open right hand block). The key to this movement is to turn very fast, the drop and let the hips do the strike and block.

We finished up with some specific work on Kanku Dai. We started standing with our draw hand tight on our side, then drop the body and use the hips to strike with a left open hand rising block and high right hand horizontal knife hand strike, then front snap kick, after the kick turn 180 degrees and execute a manji uke, do the double open hand strike (low level open left hand strike with sweeping open right hand block) and pull back to the starting position with our draw hand tight on our side. After that, Sensei had us do Kanku Dai twice and then one kata of our choice.

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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