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Shotokan Karate

Shotokan Karate is one of the four main schools of Karate in Japan. It is best characterised by its long and deep stances and its use of more linear movements.

Shotokan Karate has little of the circular movements found in Okinawan styles of karate, nor does it have the body conditioning and supplementary training exercises typical for Okinawan Goju-Ryu Karate.

Shotokon Karate is considered by many a sports style of Karate, where tournaments and point-sparring are central to the art.

Many exponents of Shotokan are displeased about the way Shotokan has been portrayed and would prefer that Shotokan becomes again the traditional, non-sports martial art as conceived by Funakoshi.

Origin of Shotokan Karate: Japan

Founder of Shotokan: Gichin Funakoshi (Originally an Okinawan Karate Instructor who moved to Japan)

Last 5 forum posts on Shotokan Karate:

Gichin Funakoshi

161 comments about “Shotokan Karate”

  1. Charlie and Ian said:

    We both train with the Karate Union of Great Britain (www.kugb.org) and I can assure anyone reading this that the way we practice shotokan is primarily kata-based and certainly not a sport style of karate. Shotokan, when practiced properly, is an exceedingly powerful form of karate, concentrating on physical kime as the source of its power.

    We do participate in competition, but this is optional and considered as a sideline to the main focus on pure karate training. Our chief instructors are second to none (read about Frank Brennan and Andy Sherry on the site) and we take karate seriously as a fighting art, the way Master Funakoshi intended. I don’t know where the author of this site got his ideas about shotokan, but it certainly wasn’t from the KUGB.

  2. Brett Barrell said:

    no one style or art is infalable, the simple fact it is a style is its failing,
    Being able to draw your mind from the shackles of your style and percive martial arts as a whole, but for a moment. you will be a better martial artist already.

  3. stephen said:

    It has a unic style. The excerises in this event gives a whole body movement and I personely find it to be a very good self protection from our our adversery.

  4. Arachnos said:

    I have to say that I do not agree with what’s written here. Shotokan is not a sports style and it’s a very good style for selfdefence.

  5. Juan Eduardo leal lara said:

    Karate is the best way to form a good body shape

  6. Juan Eduardo leal lara said:

    I have studied Karate alone with books and other materials, im the greatest fighter in my school but i have concluded that the best way to win a fight is using your brain not your weapons(hands or legs) any question please give it to me, my email is dexterinncaamec@hotmail.com

  7. Paul said:

    Charlie, Ian and Arachnos, read again. The writer didn’t state that Shotokan is a sports style. He states that many (he doesn’t mention himself included of excluded) think of Sotokan as a sports style of Karate.

  8. Brett Barrell said:

    It is also correct to say that a martial art is only as effective as the practitioner makes it.
    Keep this in mind and train hard and right and with a good heart.

  9. Patrick said:

    This is why people poke fun at us.

  10. Brian said:

    I have found the style to be a good lesson in discipline and it also breeds self confidence I would reccomend it for everyone, even those with some difficulty with fitness as you will gain the fitness as you grade.

  11. Brian H. said:

    You shouldn’t worry about if it is a “sports” style or not its a form of martial arts that keeps u in shape and gives you some confidence. Personally I think you should do what ever is fun. Because that is what it is all about guys , fun.

  12. Jeremy said:

    I understand when people see Shotokan as a “sport style” due to what this style has evolved into in many dojos. I teach Shotokan and our school participates little to no tournaments but our students do extremely well if the do choose to compete. At our dojo we try to hold true to the Okinawan mind set in which Karate is a “martial art” and not a “sport” seeing as how Okinawa is where Shotokan was born. If practiced correctly Shotokan is an excellent tool for developing an ever improving character and technique that can be devastating when used correctly. Please feel free to contact us via our site at http://www.nwlmaa.org

  13. Richard Wakefield said:

    Shotokan karate is a powerful effective martial art. At my dojo we stay true to funakoshi’s original view and teachings and I can assure the author of this site that it is in no way a sport style of karate. To say that ‘point sparring’ is central to the art is hilarious as I have never in my 5 years of karate, participated in such a thing. Some of my fellow students who have trained in other forms of karate comment on how effective and tough shotokan is.

  14. Tania said:

    Well ive been training since the age of 5 and i am now 17…i have to say karate has had a big impact on my life and the way i look at things and to train in the Shotocan martial arts is one of the greatest physical mental and spiritual enlightnment of ones life. Though I did not understand this at the age of 5.

  15. Brian A said:

    i was baffled when i saw the top of this forum. i definitely disagree, you defintely have to be powerful to implement good shotokan technique. This style also has a wonderful background as well as changes your entire life, for the better! Tounrnaments and sport relations to shotokan is not bad in my view, it gives you an even greater view of the style and helps you to condition your mind especially, in many ways. For each event you notice you think differently compared to the last time. However i disagree that the whole sporting concept is central to the art, it IS beneficial in my view, but not central to the art.

  16. Sven said:

    I also study shotokan Karate in Australia and i find that when properly studied the style is a balance of both kata and sparring with other students in order only to quicken reflexes and perfect fighting techniques. those who view the competitions as a sport only to be won need to reexamine they’re priorities. The only reason i would compete in competitions would be to better my own training.

  17. Larry Mott said:

    Shotokan is a style of karate that is no longer a martial art. It was changed in Okinawa to a more modern form prior to its introduction to Japan. Its evolution to a sport has taken place in order to be accepted by the Japanese as a Japanese art, not an Okinawan art. Okinawan’s were very much looked down apon by the Japanese at that time. What we all have been taught and continue to practice is essentially Japanese university sport karate. The Butokukai would not certify karate officially unless there were standards for instructors, belt ranking and a competition format like Judo or Kendo. Karate only became popular in the universities and when these students graduated, they continued training at the hombu dojo. Takushoku university has had the most influence. The JKA developed the instructor training program and sent their graduates across the globe to spread the university style of karate whe now know. Shotokan is made up of many styles of Okinawan karate and has scientifically developed into the techniques we have today. If you want to get back to the martial art, then I recommend you read the Bubishi-the bible of karate by Patrick McKarthy or check out the Kissaki-kai of Vince Morris. They are on the right track toward what origianlly was karate.

  18. jabree s. said:

    shotokan is one of the best fighting styles i know

  19. Harman said:

    when i was three years old, then i join the shotokan karate do intitute international.Now,i am 11 yers old Iam black belt 3rd dan.In 8 years I know that Shotokan is one best fighting styles.In 8 years i winn 49 bronze madels,56 silver madels and 81 gold madels and 26 and best fighter award.SHOTOKAN is most powerfull karate art.SHOTOKAN karate is perfect self defence.So,I want only say that EAST OR WEST SHOTOKAN IS THE BEST……..

  20. Stephen Lucas said:

    I am a shodan in Shotokan and belong to CFTS. I disagree with the point sparring being essential to the art as I feel both Kata, Kumite and Basics are needed before someone can really become a good fighter. Shotokan is one of the longest running clubs and I am confused about who actually is displeased with the way it’s portrayed?

  21. Torok Tivadar said:

    I practice shotokan karate since 1996. I think shotokan is a great style for competitions and also is good for self defense.

  22. Richard Walsh said:

    I am still learning Shotokan and rate it highly. It’s funny to read some of the comments left here, the writer of the site portrayed an opinion on our chosen style – is it not by constantly questionning where one’s true progress is measured ? The only constant with any martial art (and that’s what they are)should be a truly open mind. If you can be flexible with your mind, the body learns this, not the other way round. Many here are defending the style – why ? go out and learn some of their style, only then can you have the gained the wisdom to offer the opinion. They are all good styles it’s the exponents of them that make them great.

  23. Greg said:

    I have been studying Karate for more than a year. I do not do shotokan but i do kyokushin Kaiand and have beaten up lots of people. My height is 5″3 and I am an assistant instructor. I write to you like this not because i want to brag but

    1. to say never star the fight “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you live at peace with all Mankind.
    2. to tell you that we are not a weak Karate in fact we say that we are to follow the way of the warrior.

    With that said just because I’m a blue belt(Go-kyu) that does not mean I can not fight or win in a competiton

  24. Wildbluesun said:

    I study Shotokan and believe that though it doesn’t have supplementary mental training, you learn that as you go along. I have never taken part in point sparring, though I have practiced Kumatie often. I would say that Kata is the most essential part of Shotokan, and though students from my class often go onto competitions I don’t see them as essential.

    Answering Greg: so you’ve beaten up lots of people? My brother wanted to do Karate because he thought it would all be about beating up people. “Beating up” people should NOT come into Karate.

  25. Bahador said:

    Hello ous to all karate kaa
    karate in a way to be a human
    it teaches u way of life and if you learn kata u can have a free mind open your mind to the world with practice karate and kata ous

  26. Bahador said:

    It’s not a way to fight. It’s a way to learn to not fight and control yourself in times of trouble. When ur angry you must control yourself and when you loose your mind you must control your hand. You can get this by practicing karate and and kata.

    It’s not a way for fighting ..in kata you learn not to attack first.
    you are not first attack , all katas begin with bloch and ends with block and it is karate!!!

    karate is last way for you if you must fighting!!!
    ous

  27. Kerrie said:

    Hey everyone

    I started karate about 7 weeks ago but haven’t been told the belting system….can anyone please tell me the order in which the belts go?

    Thanks,
    Kerrie

  28. JM said:

    I’ve noticed a trend in shotokan to move toward a more traditional view of karate, a move away from sport and a return to Funakoshi’s ryu. Peace.

  29. Petter said:

    “Shotokan” is a splintered style of karate and has been at least since the death of Master Funakoshi. I get the impression (though I lack personal experience) that the Japanese Karate Association (JKA), by now a large international group, is fairly sports and tournament oriented. There are, however, other groups, such as Shotokan Karate of America (SKA), of which the group to which I belong (Canada Shotokan Karate, CSK) is a daughter organisation.

    While SKA/CSK does arrange a few tournaments (indeed, our shihan, Tsutumo Ohshima, created the present format of judging for such tournaments), there is no emphasis thereon. To quote Ohshima-sensei, “We all knew the object of martial arts was not competition. Competition was only to bring martial arts to the general public, so that we would have enrollment in the traditional martial arts from the next generation.”

    In the splintered world of Shotokan, it may be that some have lost track of the true goal of karate-do, but that should not mislead people to believe that all have. Speaking as a practitioner (however novice) of Ohshima Shotokan karate, I am confident, at least, that I had the fortune of starting on a path more meaningful.

  30. Andrew said:

    Shotokan karate is probably the only karate that would work in a real life situation. there is no such thing as sports karate. Shotokan is true budo traditional karate and the main reason that everyone forgets is that tornaments are only there to test or show the skill that you have.

  31. Ziggy said:

    What bothers me about shotokan is that every commercial dojo I have seen seems to teach “Shotokan style” I am sure there are real shotokan dojos, but it also seems to loan itself fairly well to commercialization… Tournaments may be there to test your skills, but it has also become a selling point with many commercialized dojos. This is probably what disturbs most people about shotokan.

    I do not train in shotokan, but rather Seibukan form of Shorin-Ryu. Let us not continue this trend of saying “Shotokan is the only art that would work in such and such a situation” as most would, however you have likely not trained in them. (In a few cases I have sparred against shotokan practitioners… They use seem to use a lot of inaccurate, fast flashy and showy techniques, and leave themselves open a good deal. Maybe this is not all shotokan but it is what I have experienced) Most arts in pure form do wonders physically mentally and spiritually for oneself, lets not say it is exclusive to a particular art.

    Kata, Ipon Kumite, Drills, Sparring, and non traditional self defense drills (Defending against knife and club attacks, shirt grabs, head locks, rear chokes, etc) are all important aspects, each for different things. Even warm ups are important as they build willpower for when you dont feel you can continue (at least in my experience the warm ups are the most mentally building).

    Also, Is it really necessary to discuss rank? Methinks saying I am a such and such cheapens the dialogue.

  32. Vincent said:

    I have trianed in Goju ryu for eight years and have now been training in Shotokan since relocating for the past two years and I can tell you the differences are down to the interpretations of the instructor who is teaching the art/style.

    If the instructor is only into competition then the chances are he/she will teach what they are good at and more importantly what they like doing. A good instructor is an all rounder who understands the need for strong kihon, kata and kumite but for those students who want to compete in tournaments the opportunity is there – so competitions are an extra.

    Lets not forget a lot of clubs recieve recognition for students winning high profile competitions so this in turn attracts new student/custom through the front door. My advise to anyone who wants it is there is only so many different ways you can use your arms and legs so there is no bad martial arts – just bad martial artists!

    Train hard and consistantly become all that you can this is true Budo

  33. Phillip said:

    I’ve studied shotokan karate for the past 14 1/2 years and recently started teaching for the past year. I have realized that from my instructors way of teaching to his and so on the way has changed.

    The previous instructors took great pride in the art and cared nothing of competing, but my instructor loves to compete and he has taken the art and destroyed it with flips and tricks, in competition karate.

    He is now the number 1 school in the world but my respect for him has gone, for i was brought up when he cared about the art and now he doesn’t, so i’m taking the art back to the beginning where it was about the tradition and style. I’m pouring my heart into this to try to get it back to the beginning.

  34. francisco said:

    I disagree with this thingermerbobber. Well for one point sparring isn’t really used. We just focus on kumite and katas and basics and we still all learn a lot. I personally love shotokan and i don’t like the way this guy made it sound a sports style……..def not

  35. Steven Cole said:

    Your site is very lucky for me

  36. Alex said:

    It doesn’t matter what style of karate you practice; none is better than other. It depends on you! “put your knife on good shape”

  37. hunni said:

    I started shotokan karate 8 months ago and I have learnt a lot. It is brilliant, it has given me more confidence. Also I read on a website that women should stick to scratching and biting I think that is wrong. Women can do just as well as men.

  38. $h@olin monk said:

    Shaolin fist is the best it will kill shotokan.

  39. Tony said:

    Totally agree with Charlie & Ians comments.
    Shotokan is a very powerful style and the katas are a complete self defence fighting system when studied properly.

  40. francisco davila said:

    I do shotokan and the dojo that I study at is very traditional. We don’t even hold tournaments at my dojo and most of our training revolves around kumite.

    My sensei was a student of nakayama, and nakayama was a student of funoshki. My sensei is now a 8th degree black belt (his name is shigeru takashina). I’m not sure if that’s the reason why we arent a “sports style” dojo or what but in my dojo we are extremely traditional. Not one bit of “sports style” shotokan here.

  41. David Watson said:

    I fought a shotokan man once in a real fight I beat him up and took him to the ground. This boy was 13 and a 1st dan. He said that Shotokan was the best but it was not.

    I just used my knowledge of Jeet Kune Do and Ninjutsu and he was no match for me. Shotokan is way too stiff and as unusual techniques. He tried to punch me I just moved out of the way with my ninjutsu kicked him in the knee with a Jeet Kune Do kick and took him down. But he still continues to take Karate and I dont know why?

  42. francisco said:

    Uhhh well that kid just sucked. Plus he was only 13 and i don’t know why he was a first dan because i’m not even a first dan, and i’m 15 and I have won many fights.

    We don’t hold competitions but we do basically full contact kumite and the techniques we learn are very useful that kid just sucked.

  43. Marcel said:

    I have studied shotokan for sometime know, and I agree that it can be viewed as sport karate. I’m not knocking the style but training in low stances and emphasis on kata, kihon and kumite is it base. A fight is limitless it holds no bounderies and eventually you will go to the ground.

    I believe Shotokan can provide you with a good base! concerning basics! but it’s a karateka responsibility to explore other styles. Shotokan is linear in it’s techniques it’s a hard style designed to break or destroy a persons defenses. What about mixing soft and circular techniques where you can redirect force or off set the attacker so a hard/soft style incorporated with evasive tactics is perfect.

    I appreciate what my Sensei has taught me and the base he has given me where I can defend myself against an attacker but if a person wants true street self-defense I wouldn’t tell them to take shotokan it’s very time consuming perfection of techniques! you will do the same thing over and over again.

    The best is mixed Martial Arts! Boxing,Karate,Jujitsu and Arnis. Find a school that is versatile and you will be fine. Osu!

  44. derek thmas said:

    ive been studying SHOTOKAN KARATE sine the age of 12 and now im 18,

    all styles have its advantages and disadvantages,i consider myself as an all to all fighter,

    my sensei says that we should take the best out of all fighting styles,

    we conditioned ourselves as true samuraii and we dont like the traditional karate point fighting in competitios,we prefer a more grond to ground aproach as STREET FIGHTING,

    if u wana know more just mail me at d-toms***NOSPAM***@hotmail.com

  45. Charlotte said:

    i have trained in shotokan karate for many years but am only 17 but am going for my 2nd dan soon.

    it is not what style is better but whether you can put your skills into practive when you need them e.g. if your life is at risk.

    all karate styles have advantages and disadvantages but if what you know can save your life it doesnt really matter what style you practice!

    xxx

  46. Shawn said:

    No jujitsu is the best fighting style!!

  47. Shawn said:

    Are school has gone into many fighting schools and proved that Gracie Jujitsu is more effective then shotokan karate

  48. JENNIFER MARTINEZ said:

    HELLO I WAS JUST WONDERING IF YOU HAVE ANY CLASSE FOR THIS TYPE OF KARATE? BECAUSE MY BROTHER WAS TAKING THIS TYPE O F CLASSES BEFORE AND I WOULD REALLY LIKE FOR HIM TO FINISH GETTING ALL HIS STRIPS ON HIS BLACK BELT SO CAN YOU PLEASE LET ME KNOW AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, BECAUSE WE WOULD LIKE HIM TO START AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AND THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING. I’LL BE WAITING TO HERE FOR YOU. THANK YOU ONCE AGAIN JENNIFER

  49. Tyler F said:

    yes and no jujitsu is the best if you get on the ground but i’ve seen jujitsu kids get knocked out becuase they dont have basic kickboxing skills.

  50. denise mocete said:

    moving to the warwick area of new york, any shotokan locations near?? thanks

  51. Ron said:

    Most people that believe that they are practicing real shotokan are not!! Shotokan is not hard. Funakoshi’s shotokan was a softer than lets say, “JKA” shotokan or the shotokans that have spurred from the JKA. Goju means hard and soft and this is not the only style that should be hard and soft. All martial arts need to be hard and soft and different times.

    The fact is most shotokan practitioners look the same as they did 20 years ago. This is not karate. Karate should be evolving and changing. Funakoshi said this himself. If he came back now and saw that shotokan looks the same now as it did 20-30 years ago, then he would be extremely disappointed.

    Look at old tapes, original shotokan (a style which he never named by the way) incorporated striking, joint locks, throws…. a mixed martial art so to speak. How many shotokan dojos practice all these things in a practical manner…. almost none!!

  52. Andy said:

    I practise mainly Jujitsu, Muy Thai, Tae Kwon Doe, and boxing…I am training for the UFC…I used to box ameaturely and kiked ass…when i get on the ground i just go w/ my own style…i can end it in under a minute on the ground…

  53. lampard08 said:

    wado ryu is better!

    [Eire!]

  54. RB said:

    is it true that karate has no effect in a real fight?

  55. mark G said:

    yes no one style is the best. if you even try to get into other martial arts you are still in bondage to the styles, it is like what bruce say” it is not many stlyes or …. but its the expression of the body.” If you train the body to take hits and distroy. in return you will be able to destroy your computition any time. it shouldnt be about this silly talk about the best art but your question should be what makes up the total killer and if it come down to it will you use it.

  56. Harman said:

    I want to said to all that really,shotokan can beat all the martial arts weather it is judo,karate,taekwondo,hapkido,kobudo,tai jitsu,samurai,boxing,muai-Thai,tai-chi,ninjitsu,shaolin kung-fu etc.When I was gent china,korea,japan I saw that Shotokan grand master MASTER-HIROKAJU KANAZAWA had beat the shaolin kung-fu in china,judo and other japanese martial arts in japan.so,SHOTOKAN is one best karate style.

  57. lampard said:

    shotokan is too slow…. where as wado ryu is the fastest karate style, therefore wado ryu is king of karate

    eire!

  58. Alex said:

    Shotokan karate is not a sport, it’s more like a intensize physical form of self defence. We do participate in competitions but we do so at our own accord. Shotokan is extremely powerful, using punches, kicks and many other more complecated techniques.

  59. Alex said:

    it’s me Alex again, i would just like to point out that all karate styles have advantages and disadvantages, i mean shotokans disadvantage is that it’s slow but then again you can make it quicker and it’s advantage is that it’s extremely strong, powerful, effective and focuses on taking people out quickly and effectively as possible. So i would say if you want to learn a type of self defence that is quick and powerful, shotokan is deffernently the best you can go for.

  60. Onwukeme paschal obiora said:

    I would love to study with the institute.

  61. Onwukeme paschal obiora said:

    I would love study with the institute.

  62. Turkiya alraisi said:

    i am a karate small girl and i am 10 years old .i am in shotokan karate and in red belt in Oman . with my master shokatKan i want to joun and learn more about Karate .

  63. Pete adds: said:

    Ive been doing shotokan for some time now and have experianced other martial arts as well. I agree with alex that each style has it advantages and disadvantages. I think to a certain extent style is irrelevent, Its the teacher that is the most important thing. If you find the right teacher or school you will develop quickly and will be happy with your training.

  64. CUB LEWIS said:

    I HAVE BEEN TRANNING IN SHOTOKAN FOR 33 YRS AND ALL STYLES ARE GOOD IVE SEEN MANY FIGHTS ON THE DOJO AND OFF . THE REAL FIGHT DEPENDS ON THE PERSON NOT THE ART ,YOU CAN BE GOOD IN ANY ART OR STYLE BUT THE FIGHT DEPENDS ON YOUR MENTAL TRAINNING, A KICK IS A KICK AND A PUNCH A PUNCH ITS ONLY AS GOOD AS THE PERSON OR KARATE-KA THAT DELIVERS IT.

  65. rajesh agrawal said:

    Respected Sensei

    Warm greetings from Rajesh Agrawal India.
    I glad to inform you that All India Wadokai Karate do Association is going to organize 4th International Karate Championship at Gujarat refinery community hall Vadodara city Gujarat State India on 20 November 2006.

    Sensei Barry Wilkinson from UK will be as a chief referee and the referee from Dubai namely Sensei Bhasker (WKF Referee) Sensei Sandeep Salvi (wkf Referee (India) Sensei Joji Abraham (AKF Referee) and Sensei Hoshi Batliwal (AKF Referee ) will be preside the function.

    I have already send you all the details invitation by mail before two months I hope you receive it. If you will not receive our Invitation letters please feel free to send me your detail address with fax number I will send you immediately.
    I would be happy if I could receive your mail for final entry or greetings message for the students of India.
    Waiting for your favorable response.
    Regards

    Rajesh Agrawal
    Gen Secretary
    Indiawadokai.com
    Telefax: 0091-265-2789780 Home: 0091-265-2345191
    Cell: 00919898299727

  66. Mubeena Mohd said:

    Greetings from Dubai. I started learning karate a little more than a month ago here at the Dubai Karate Centre (www.dubaikarate.com). In such a relatively short time-frame, I have witnessed a great increase in my overall self-confidence and strength. It is also great to know that there is a support network like this one here, and will be visiting this site regularly to continuously improve upon my training. Thanks and regards.

  67. Kit Harris said:

    I think karate is one of the most deep and meaningful martail arts styles. And even though all styles are equal I think shotkan is the deepest karate style, and because its about killing or winning in contests with the first strike landed It persuades practitioners and artists to respect it for its art and culture. The strength of it is also very impressive and attractive.

  68. Nick K. said:

    I agree with you completely about the result of a real situation
    and it depending on the karateka and his mental attitude on the situation. Id like to add that if you train your mind the way your supposed to in the dojo and learn how to relax your mind you wont be going crazy when the situation pops up where you need your focus and the technique youve practiced and perfected through your kata in the dojo. That one second is where all your training will come together and be when it matter the most.

  69. Jeremy S. said:

    I understand everyone’s partiality towards their own styles but there are no “best” or “deepest” styles out there; A style is what you make of it. Also, I really don’t see why people see their martial arts as just this style or that style. If you are truly devoted to the martial arts, then it is A WAY OF LIFE and not just a style or a hobby.

    Jeremy Sneider
    Shodan in Shotokan

  70. Christa said:

    You are all ignorant. How can you say one style is better than the other if you haven’t practised it.

  71. gregory stoute said:

    my sensi always said we all think of our style is better than the other but you have to understand can you defeat the other in battle only then you can “the best style ” learn of the other and learn from the other

  72. NICK K. said:

    There are many opinions on different styles but that isnt what you should be focusing on. When you first begin taking martial arts are you worried about what style your taking? I know i didnt. The goal of each martial art is to gain as much knowledge on karate in general as you can. This goes along with the perfection of the physical and mental aspects of the art. To be plain and simple, KARATE IS KARATE no matter the style. It is your karate and you should make the best of is no matter what it practices. There is always something to learn and make better.

  73. NICK K. said:

    Iampard08, i dont think it is a good idea to try and dis other styles and how they practice. They do different things for different reasons while they train. For instance shotokan practices slow at different times because we stress the perfection of technique and body and spirit. Its hard to get that completely down doing things fast constantly. Slow and effective is better than fast and ineffective. Think before you speak please.

  74. arvz said:

    i am a blackbelt myself and have found out that not only does this karate help protect u it gives u more techqniques

  75. a said:

    a most use ful karate style

  76. imran said:

    am a 1st degree black myself n karate has helped me in many ways in my personal life.building my body n mind.but were am from u have to b very strong n brave.

  77. imran said:

    i must say all other styles r cool,but as 4me,av tried many but none has helped me like tha way shotokan did.ITS THE BEST.

  78. Bob said:

    I could not more firmly disagree with the observation made in this description. All martial arts have been bastardized by instructors that have lost sight of what they are teaching. There are a multitude of reasons why this happens, not he least of which being the inherent need for immediate gratification that is woven into the fabric of peoples psyche. In my opinion a school that is not teaching Shotkan in its true form and strictly adhering to its principals is not teaching Shotokan at all. The destructive efficiency of Shotokan is unparalleled when administered by a true karateka. Those who have been privileged enough to be trained properly will know exactly what I am talking about.

  79. Sabri Torkman said:

    Karate Shotokan is a very hard style.The focuse is on generating more power throgh KIMI(focuse&concentration).The drop off rates of student in tredtional shotokan karate school like
    the JKA is very high. This is good indication of nonsport style. IPON (one strike,one kill)
    you will hear this a lot from instructors,to prepare you for that time in life where your life or the life of some one you are defending is on the line.Your block will be be so hard it becomes an attack.

  80. Rob harrison said:

    Master Funakoshi was an Okinawan master in the art. This is a very powerful and deadly form,primarily as self defense, not as sport. Kumitae was invented so the students did not kill each other as they would if they really went at it. Kempo people find it embarrasing that we kick their butts at tournaments and want to call our style, sport. It is far from that I assure you.

  81. will said:

    i do shotokan karate @ a small local club it’s right fun if any1 is readin’ this who dosn’t go to karate it’s time 4 u to join!!!

  82. Max said:

    Wondering if Shotokan is effective? Read in this article about how sensei Yahara beat up 34 chimpira (low-rank yakuza) in a parking lot: http://metropolis.co.jp/tokyo/658/feature.asp

  83. mahsa said:

    hi,
    I need some info about Sensei Yamamura,but i dono whats his style and so i cant find him on the google,can you help me ,or even do u know his style?pliz let me know if you can help me,tanx.
    angelmahsa66666@yahoo.com

  84. Joshua said:

    i would have to agree that with time, you knowledge and skill grow, but you must still remember that things that you learned at a young age still are of vital use
    I have been training since I was four years old, (thanx to my father, he is a 5th degree black belt), and the stuff i learned at age four like a proper punch and kick are still what i primarily use today
    even though my skill have gone up exponentially, and my knowledge of learning how to use the human body as its own downfall is great, i would still have to say that no matter how much you advance, basics are still vital.

  85. Carli said:

    I think Karate has been for a long time losing its core material for being not just a martial art but also a school to learn how to be a better person whether you are a world champion or beat up to ten guys, that wouldn’t matter, what really matters is the change for the better that karate practice has left in you, and by the way, the Karate training method is very wrong concerning the Kumite part because they teach Competition Karate where striking to the gidan level is not allowed so if you get a blow on the street from somebody on your legs, you can do nothing…..

  86. someguy said:

    no matter what the martial arts if you don’t take your training seriously you cannot win there is an old saying train hard and fight easy just because he is a black belt doesn’t mean he trained well i know people with black belts that don’t take it seriously and they suck they fight really slow or really quick without power any way shotokan like any martial art when trained with diligence is devestating

    and what were you talking about saying that you two were fighting i alwys thought that martial arts is a self defence not an excuse to injure others if he challenged you then it proves that he has alot to learn and if you challenged him then vice versa

  87. 4th dan aiki-jitsu said:

    i have to say that with me studying shotokan karate and recieving my blackbelt then moving on to aiki-jitsu that aiki-jitsu is much much better . it uses aikido (throwing techniques)karate and ju-jitsu and also kik boxing and weapons .

  88. jamie said:

    hey i have taken shotokan for many years, my sister was a national champ in it, i like it cause it totally does make you stronger, and you people think that it is not a effective style, got to stop watching vandam movies, or find a better trainer cause it was by far the best physical and mental workout i have ever had

  89. ninja said:

    Hi. I’m 13 years old and graded for black belt in november of 2006. I am 1 of only 2 under 14′s blackbelts registered in japan… i love karate and do 10 hours of it in just 3 days, i have to train in the gym 2 hours a week but i do about 3-4. i am dedicated to karate and hope to have my own club it japan when i am older. i love karate and have been doing it for 9 years.

  90. robin dave raj said:

    Karate has been more of a discipline in my life than an instrument of defence It teaches you to be more efficient and more patient towards others

  91. robin raj said:

    I am a Black Belt I Dan in Karate.. In my 11years of learning and teaching expeience I came to know that the Shotokan style is the most reliable advanced and modern way of mastering the art of karate.. It teaches you to be more efficient in all the techniques and applications you use.

  92. Juan Eduardo Leal Lara said:

    The art of fighting has the same rules than the emotional intelligence that is far more important than the IQ. Act in the precise moment,with the correct intensity, place , way and always for a good reason. If you can do this no one will ever beat you in a physical or mentally fight.

  93. Naruto said:

    Naruto
    I love Shotokan karate. I am now testing for an orange belt. I am learning from Young Champians of America schools.
    May 5, 2007

  94. chinknawana said:

    i suck @ karate! i am 15 years old and started @ age 13…did i join to late? when should i have joined?

  95. sidekicks 83 said:

    Shotokan karate is a joke. Its useage of classical stances and lack of speed make it a very impractical style. Kyokushin karate is more suitable for self defense and competition due to its flowing kicks and fast nontelegraphic movement.

  96. Bettina Ishimaru said:

    This comment is quite a generalization! With over 6 million participants worldwide I beg to differ with this OPINION>>>I would never trust a person who “poisens the well from which we all drink”. I have studied, praticed and taught Shotokan for over 20 years and have participated in sports competition less than 10 times! I teach over 6 classes a week and focus of training is on kihon and kata. If you even investigate this style only slightly you will understand that this style 1) Is the first Karate style to record an oral tradition into writing and standardize it.(Funakoshi 1922).2)Is the only Karate style to continuously analyze correct body movement and biomechanics to increase power and ease body strain (Karate “The Art of Empty Hand”,Nishiyama 1960, “The Textbook of Modern Karate” ,Okazaki 1984.)3)It the only martial art to record all karate kata movement in a series of educational books with photos (“Best Karate Series” , Nakayama 1977). True Shotokan is not really Okinawan, but Japanese.(SO WHAT) Shotokan is NOT a linear style if you study it past beginner. Intermediate and advanced practioners practice linear and non-linear movements as well as hard and soft movements. THIS SITE IS OBVIOUSLY BIASED AGAINST SHOTOKAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  97. sidekicks 83 said:

    I respect your comments, Bettina Ishimaru. You obviously have great belief in your system. I have tested many martial arts styles and found kyokushin karate, hapkido, and judo to be the most effective. Among the least effective were shaolin kung fu, aikido, and shotokan. All styles have strengths but some have more strengths than others.

  98. bi said:

    I personally think that shotokan is the best style of karate.

  99. Joshua peterson said:

    I have a black belt in shotokan karate and let me tell you its not just about sparring and competing. Its about technique building technique and also building confidence and a positive posture as well as becoming the best person you can be. So its not just about the sparring and competing.

  100. Stephen said:

    It is sad to see so many karate practioners and other martial artists seem not to understand that what we do is more than physical developement, self-defence and competition. How many of us really understand the meaning of the dojo-kon or niju kun. I have studied shotokan karate for many years with some of our top sensi’s and continue to do so. As said by Sensi Oakzaki karate is not about being bettter than anyone else, but about striving to being better than you used to be both as a person and a martial artist. Know yourself, know others, help others. This is the way to karate-do.

  101. maryross cuestas said:

    i lov karate thats it!

  102. wado king said:

    Wado ryu karate is without doubt the fasetest style of karate there is… Other styles of karate of stronger I must admit. But which would you choose, power or speed? I know which I would choose.

  103. Vince Lofaro said:

    I have trained Tong Long Kung-Fu and Shotokan Karate for several years each. In the short to medium term, most Shotokan students will have an advantage over Tong Long students. In the long term, a Tong Long master is almost unbeatable. Tong Long has lots of fast close range smashing, high accuracy vital target strikes, complex grappling, circular movements, hand conditioning, emphasis on elbow/knuckles, very little kicking , development of close range power etc. The Tong Long fighter basically gets close to you and rips you to pieces without taking a pause. Shotokan on the other hand has slower, but more powerful punches/strikes, a nice set of kicks, lots of linear movements, emphasis on hip movement and retracting arm etc. The Shotokan fighter will basically punch and kick you flippin hard from a distance and then charge in and mow you over. So is an art better because its masters are superior. I don’t think so. I think an art is better if it is more natural and gives you confidence in the shorter term. I must say that Shotokan has one other benefit that is hard to explain. It gives you “physical/mental/spiritual balance”, and in big quantities. I did not experience this “balance” with Kung Fu. One interesting thing with martial arts is that the core emphasis of techniques may be different, but as you advance you will find more and more overlap between the arts. For example: yes Shotokan emphasises linear movements, but that doesn’t mean their are no circular movements, and also there is nothing to stop a Shotokan Karateka from adopting a Kyokushin circular movement.

  104. james amani said:

    I came to realise that my life would be incomplete if i dont play karate.I have yellow belt but with my Sempai Mwaluko soon I will be great person in the ring (I believe)

  105. kraft said:

    Shotokan, if researched properly, is one of the most traditional styles of karate. Most of traditional karate puts much emphasis on kata and the perfection of technique for maximum effectivness. Shotokan practices slow at first to achieve this goal (one technique finish). It is much easier to throw a basic kick at normal speed then slowly, therefore once able to perform the technique slowly then it is practiced at higher speeds.

  106. Becky said:

    “Visitor comment: kraft commented to Shotokan Karate · July 28th, 2007 @ 9:25 pm

    Shotokan, if researched properly, is one of the most traditional styles of karate. Most of traditional karate puts much emphasis on kata and the perfection of technique for maximum effectivness. Shotokan practices slow at first to achieve this goal (one technique finish). It is much easier to throw a basic kick at normal speed then slowly, therefore once able to perform the technique slowly then it is practiced at higher speeds.”

    What you have stated there is exactly what I have experienced in just my first two weeks studying the art. I am more familiar with Tang Soo Do, but abandoned that years ago. I am seeing what you say put into actual practice at my dojo, and this makes me more confident of my decision to study the art.

  107. Nicholas said:

    Shotokan is not a joke. It is the first style that I have studied and I think it is great for self defense. You don’t need speed to stop a fight you need a way to diffuse the situation before anyone gets hurt. In Shotokan you don’t kick the person into submision but you use a simple block and if done right that will in most cases diffuse the fight.

  108. Nicholas said:

    I agree. I do not want to put down other styles and I do not like it when people put mine down ether.

  109. Nicholas said:

    I would not say that. I am also studying Shotokan and I think that it is a great style. However, I have not had the experience of other styles to compare it to. So I can’t say that it is the best style but I can say that I like it a lot. :)

  110. Nicholas said:

    lampard, I do not agree with you. Speed does not make a style. However, if you are doing something slow enough to get by I would not choose it but Shotokan is not slow. It all depends on the person that is doing the style. For instance, I am a yellow belt and I can throw all of the basic blocks in a little more than a second, maybe two, and I have only been in it for two months. Imagine a black belt that has devoted himself to Shotokan. I am willing to bet that he can throw it in less than a second, as hard as a piece of steel, and he can throw them in, I am guessing, all positions. And that is just the defensive moves.

  111. Nicholas said:

    4th dan aiki-jitsu, I think that you are very mistaken on you opinion of Shotokan. I am not meaning to say anything bad about aiki-jitsu, I am sure that it is a very good style, but I do not think that you should compare Shotokan to aiki-jitsu by the amount of things you can learn. I think you should compare it to how much you did learn and how mych you can apply to a real life situation. I think that every style has its ups and downs but it is what YOU get out of it that counts.

  112. Ron said:

    I believe that all martial arts are great, each having it’s own tradition and purpose. I also believe that Shotokan is perfectly suited to muscular big men like me (6’2″, 265 lbs). As a former linebacker, I refused to give up on heavy weight training. I have a great deal of athleticism, quickness and speed, but my size and muscularity restrict my fluidity of movement. The “linear” style of Shotokan allows me to deliver explosive strikes. Styles that rely on circular movement, jumping, etc, are not good for me. Each art has merit for someone.

  113. Mario said:

    I’m a relatively new shodan in shotokan karate and I belong to SKOTT.One of the most valuable lessons I was taught was: “There is no need to take the offensive in karate. Karate-do is a martial art that is not intended for a victory. It’s aim rather is to develop a fine personality by enduring the various trials and by sweat.”

  114. issa hamis said:

    Hi! I’m a student of shotokan karate, I like shotokan karate,I believe that shotokan is great.

  115. frank said:

    i need names of a good book or maybe a good videoso so i can practies

  116. The Fafanator said:

    Shotokan may have alot of compititions,but what better way to learn how to fight in a real fight (other than a real fight, but you cant get killed twice so a real fight for training is stupid, it has to be controlled to some level) than sparring, but I must say that it sucks that they stop you after one hit, but to me there is no better semi contact martial art, exept capohira, but unfortunatly there is no club were I live, so I have to learn from some stupid dvd, but between the two styles there is in my area (goju ryu and shotokan, I did both, but I stopped doing goju ryu) I prefer shotokan, because goju ryu is all about close quaters combat, and I cant see why you would want to hit a guy from 12cm wile you can kick him from 2 meters, but personally, I think full contact will be the best way to learn self defence.

  117. Mori said:

    I think Shotokan Karate has been portrayed wrongly.
    Yes, it can be seen and used as a “sport” art, just like any other martial art could.
    But, Shotokan is a traditional art, it is good for it’s philosophy and mental training, but it is equally good for it’s self defense.
    Does Shotokan have faults and imperfections? Yes, it does, but there is no “perfect” martial art, I believe that a true Karate-ka can and should study and respect other styles. Because, we have places in our art that out-does other arts, but, other arts also have their strong points that can also out-do us. I believe that a good Karate-ka should master his art, find it’s weaknesses and find ways to improve them, only then will Karate be “perfect”.
    As far as our art only being seen as a “sport” art, I think that if we want Shotokan to be viewed as a traditional combat art it is up to us to change its image.
    Let’s stop being sports stars and be what we are… Karate-Ka!!!

  118. stallion said:

    Hi .. I practising shotokan (ska) for 4-5 years …
    we never make a sport form shotokan .. we practising it in very traditional style …
    and I think it is a great martial arts if you will practies in a right way .. and no any sport ways … the one sport shotokan way I know is a SKIF

  119. jonathan walker ( eyles karate scotland) said:

    my feelings towards the confines of style are very much based on the foundations of jeet kune do. I firmly believe that while you are still tied down to one particular style that you cannot progress your martial arts further. I would concede that it is far better to start in a style and realise this for yourself but in the end it is inevitable. You start to realize that your opponent can read your moves from your style for example- if i was to fight a low level shotokan karate student i would automatically be looking for two major attacks one, the lunging rear cross that seems to suit shotokan students and two , the rear kick that while being easy to block can be useful after a sight blocking hand technique. After you take these two into account the threat level of your opponents point ability is greatly reduced and you instantly gain the upper hand. If you do not stick to style in the aforementioned fight you can dip in and out of the styles you know and confuse your opponent. For example you could use the mentioned rear kick in a feign attack then follow up with an inverse back fist , firstly lowering their guard then striking the exposed point at the side of the head that do not expect for that hand. Coincidently the inverse back fist while being frowned upon by many martial artists is of great importance i think into furthering your development into martial arts as it is one of those moves that bridges the gaps between our styles and in doing so makes us better martial artists

  120. Carl said:

    I am disappointed in all of you that believe argue the superiority of one discipline over another. How do you discover the answer to such a question as that? A person determines how far he/she advances in his/her own discipline. There is no test to discover which style, discipline, or school is the best. Instead you should focus on the important aspects of martial arts.

  121. Tournamentcenter said:

    just wanted to let you guys know about my new site :)

  122. Turkiya ari alraisy said:

    hi..am a karate girl in oman iam in the brown belt ,my dream when i grow up is to have my own girls karate club , i realy love karate and i wish my dream will come , iam 12years old , i would like to say that (go GIRLS its time for karate girls world)thanks!!

  123. Rylan Harwood said:

    Shotokan karate should be kept as one of the traditional karate styles, it is unessicerlly ruined by its use in the sport martial art style

  124. Peter said:

    Having trained with several great shotokan masters Randy Williams, Dave Hooper, Wayne Otto and Akio Minikami to name a few over the years it still confuses me how little people know about our style of karate it is powerful and a great body conditioner.Like many modern shotokan dojo’s we now add content to our karate, take downs and ground work, etc. It’s so plain to see from the comments on this page several people have no idea of the basics of most martial arts, the respect that should go with all martial arts is obviously missing. Beating people up, who is harder than who, which art is best,etc etc, what fools these deluded people or maybe children are. Someday with the mind set the likes of Juan Eduardo, Greg, Sha@lon Monk and David Watson have they will end up seriously hurt as they plainly underestimate other people. It’s not about who is best it’s about how you live your life, how well you train, how you treat and respect other people. This does not make you weak it makes you a decent strong human being, not a fool like some people on here, you know who you are and it’s plain to see you need to grow up some.

  125. Tony said:

    I train at San Juan Shotokan karate, shoshinkarate.org, where our training is both traditional and up-to-date. Best of both worlds!

  126. Jeremy said:

    Shotokan is a very aggresive style. It is a great way to learn self defense. I started training when I was in the sixth grade and continued all through high school until I got my black belt a year after I high school. Yes we do focus a lot on sparring but we also focus alot on kata and self defense. I recommend this style to anyone. It has made the person I am today.

  127. anonymous said:

    Of course many of us dissagree, but thats fine. But anyway, i feel that true karate comes from yourself. You learn the techniques and you learn how to make them effective. All karate and martial arts comes from the same place, ourselves. It is not the martial art, but the martial artist. And all martial arts have their place, whether it is sport, self defence, spirit, or mental reasons. Of course, this is only my opinion.

  128. Anthony said:

    well as a shotokan karateka i mostly agree with your ideas but all karate works in a real life situation. i would believe shotokan is second to kenpo.

  129. Filip said:

    I am training karate for 8.5 years and i am black belt.Shotokan karate is the basic style of all karate styles and i love it.
    You can try this style, he is the best, by my opinion.Also I like combination from shotokan karate and muay thai,like Jean-Claude Van Damme does in his movies,like Kickboxer.

  130. Aaron O connell said:

    shotokan is my favourite style because not only is it the most useful, but it’s good excercise and discipline. I thik kyokushin is too dirty and impractical.

  131. aaron o connell said:

    tips for shotokan karate: most of the time in shotokan basic techniques, you are supposed to (square your hips)keep your hips paralell with your shoulders. Don’t reach out to the full extent of your arms. Always keep the back straight and the head up when practising your kata. It’s also wise to learn your next kata before your grading, I am a shotokan orange belt and I learned up to heian sandan. and my last tip is when you’re sparring, wait for an opening and think before each move.

  132. Rita-Marie said:

    I trained in Tae Kwon Do for three years and have a blue belt. I love the physical side to it – really working the body. I don’t actually know too much about Shotokan but can anyone tell me if its as physical as Tae Kwon Do because if it’s not I won’t be really that interested to be honest. Don’t mean to be ignorant or anything but I just like to feel like I’ve had a good all over body work out.

  133. James said:

    Hello to all, ive been training in Shotokan for over 25 years and hold a 3rd dan black belt, i have read all of the good and bad comments. For example the person who said Shotokan is no good in a real fight!! you obviously couldn’t master the art i had a knife pulled on me abroad and was about to be robbed, needless to say Shotokan saved my behind. I also trained in Jujitsu and I loved it, but I will say I keep the Karate going. Just something to think about to all martial arts (and they are all good) “it`s not how bad the martial art is it`s how good and committed you are that makes it good” Thanks for reading

  134. Karate Overview | Karate said:

    [...] Shotokan Karate [...]

  135. Markus Diefenbacher said:

    hey rob harrison,

    are you from kingaroy australia???????

  136. Erika Hallmanns said:

    Dear Sir / Madam

    We come from South Africa where my son has done karate up to yellow belt. He would like to continue with wiht his sport.

    Please explain to me how this will work and what it will cost. How many times per week do they have to practice and what the times are.

    Thank you

    Erika Hallmanns

    050 281 5014

  137. aussiemantis said:

    i would like to know where you learnt your Tong Long,how long you trained and why you left Tong Long.As a long term student of TongLong in Australia I find your comments a little strange in regaeds to Shotokan being ‘better’in the short term(how short,1 month,1year?)I arent disputing or argueing I am interested to hear more.I have never trained in Shotokan but from my own experiances my TongLong has served me well in all aspects of my life.I hope to read your comments soon,thanks Aussiemantis

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  139. RACHEL GLENDINING said:

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  140. ALHASSAN A BENJAMIN said:

    relationship

  141. Amadou TOURE said:

    OSS!
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  142. Karate, What Is (or Isn’t) an Attack? | ActionKarateArts.com said:

    [...] In his Twenty Precepts, Gichin Funakoshi (founder of Shoto-Kan Karate) said “There is no first strike in karate.”  It was number 2 in the list; second only to “Karate begins with courtesy and ends with respect.”  It is fairly easy to see how important both of these ideas were in his estimation given the fact that they were the first two Master Funakoshi stated.  However, his list being a more general explanation of the correct philosophy of karate training, it does not go into great detail about what a “first strike” (or attack) actually is.  This might seem to nitpick a little, but as karate-ka train for longer periods of time, it becomes important to focus on the idea that virtually all techniques learned in the dojo can be classified as an attack in one way or another. [...]

  143. johnny! said:

    i hope you realize your dream! good luck and best wishes on your black belt and school!

  144. rhi said:

    At Brian A 2005: i weigh about 112kg, im 5’7″ and sempai Gleynn at my dojo has said that for a ungraded white belt i have an extremely powerful Chudan-choku-zuki and Jodan-choku-zuki. i’m 22 and i also use to be a boxer. so whats this about having to be powerful?

  145. Brayden said:

    I study shotokan and it isn’t slow contrary to popular belief.it is fast and hard hitting.people used to point and laugh and thought shotokan is for little girls but I find it is an effective way to hit hard and quick.in my opinion shotokan is a great martial art. And wat is all this about it being a sport?

  146. IshaniS said:

    I’m in oman too and I learn Shotokan karate , in orange belt!! This style of karate is truly amazing I feel lucky to have started this sport.I am 12 btw.

  147. Anonymous said:

    What do you mean shotokan karate is a joke? it all depends on the fighter! say that to a black belt in shotokan next time you see one! how does it have lack of speed? the fighter controls the speed.Whats wrong with classical stances? if you use a classical stance it doesnt mean you will lose in a fight! whats up with that? even if it is easier to notice (which i dont believe) it all depends on the techniques. what belt r u anyway?

  148. random said:

    that is sooo true! does shotokan karate look matrix to you? like does it look smooth and effective? you know like when you see jet li movies you go like “woooow! he has awesome moves!” for example. i think you know what i mean.

  149. Jamie Petty said:

    I have to say that i have trained in many styles of karate and won many fights but ive always had to trace my origin back to shotokan when you get right to the point. I am a black belt in many styles and love to take karate. The best place to start is Shotokan. Shotokan deals with self defense and has many life lestens such as (It doesn’t matter who looses or wins, only what happens after the fight shows the true winner.)

  150. master/shihan jordan said:

    i am from ny i my teacher was kawanabi i am 9th dan an getting my tenth in july
    i am shihan of my dojo i am only called shihan on promotions on classes iam called master

  151. Brayden said:

    Anonymous: I agree with you 100%. It does depends all on the fighter. I think I was unclear, as I was trying to get my opinion to the haters out there that post things that I and other shotokan martial artists found offensive. Shotokan builds leg strength and works on stances to build a strong foundation. As you progress through the ranks, you have that foundation of balance and flexibility which allows you to learn the kinds of moves you see in movies.

  152. D.J. Haslbeck said:

    Although Shotokan started as a non-sport entity and the JKA factions clearly became sport based, I think those who think they understand Shotokan should read “Shotokan’s Secret” by Bruce Clayton. In my opinion he makes an excellent and well supported case that the style taught by Funakoshi (which we now call Shotokan) was developed largely by Sokon Matsamura and used by the unarmed bodyguards of the “king” of Okinawa. Funakoshi lists Matsamura, Itozo and Azato among others as those who taught him karate. Clayton traces all of these men to positions as bodyguards or those who work within proximity to the king on a daily basis. Shotokan’s speed, force and linearity lend itself to a situation where one wishes to disable others quickly and then leave (presumably taking the king with them); much like secret service of the time.

  153. Dice said:

    Shotokan is the best! Plus Lyoto Machida is a shotokan practicioner! wooot

  154. Paul... said:

    I was just wondering, What would be a more rounded martial art between Shotokan or Goju? I know that both styles are very effective. I am also having trouble on, deciding on, which of these two styles to take. I love the more circular hand motions that Goju seems to offer, but the teacher that teaches Shotokan, is amazing !!! The problem is, I keep going on the net, and finding possitive and negative things, about all styles. If I am going to dedicate myself 101% to an art, I want to be sure that, I have choosen the correct one to do so. I would appreciate, If someone could please help me with these concerns, Thank you …..

  155. Jarrod Muhary said:

    I studied Shotokan when I was younger and our Master was a particularly hard man. Although I have the upmost respect for the style, I must slightly disagree with Vince’s comment regarding Tong Long after having studied it at Henry Sue’s academy in Brisbane for the last two and a half years.

    I do not make any claims that one art is better than another – (I feel the best measure is purely the practitioner themselves, & their level of commitment to training), but I must say I believe that it is better to be more competent in the long term rather than just ‘confident’ in the short term. There is nothing worse than a martial arts practitioner at an early stage in his training who is full of wrath vinegar… they usually have learned little respect & are generally a public embarrassment to the rest of us – lol

    There are certain aspects to Circular Tong Long which make it viable to destroy younger, stronger opponents well into your old age – unfortunately many other styles do not offer this longevity.

    Personally I see myself as someone who has made a commitment to practice martial arts for life, not just whilst I’m in my prime. I have found a large measure of ‘balance’ in Circular Tong Long under Grandmaster Henry Sue’s direction – but I also know I have a very, very, long way to go before I reach the level I would like to achieve in the art – perhaps an entire lifetime ;-)

  156. Gareth said:

    I train with the Karate Union of Great Britain and also disagree that Shotokan is a “Sport” martial art. There is a good balance in each lesson of basics, kata and kumite. The kumite that we practice (within the dojo at least) is not point based. It enhances and helps to perfect your technique, quicken responses and make the movement become instinct when you see an attack. Kumite for us is judged on who had the most effective technique and how well it was carried out.

  157. Jesse Ackley said:

    I have been studying martial arts for at least 8 years now. I am a 2nd degree in Shotokan Karate. I have studied a local adaptation of Shotokan Karate as well as, Judo, Ju-Jitsu, Aikido, Hapkido, Mixed Martial Arts, and now am studying to become a Black Belt in Tang Soo Do. Karate is my favorite out of all. I have been handicapped from birth and lost my leg when I was 13. Besides for a few small modifications to some kata and techniques I have done everything that was asked of me. I have point sparred, kumiate, continuous spar, and grappling sparred. They are a training tool. Martial arts is all about not fighting and only if we must. Everyone acts differently under pressure. Sparring is a good way to understand how you will act under pressure. I have been to many tournaments in my time as a martial artist, to compete and judge, and I have found that in some cases Karate styles are a sport art. It is common these days that schools will train more for tournaments then anything else. Kata’s are become fancy instead of practical. This is not what Karate is about but we all know that this doesn’t rule everyone. I love karate for what it teaches, and how we can become better martial arts by observing the world around us. I was one of the best fighters out of my school because I used everything I know and mostly my head. I was the first black belt of the school and am respected all over my home area. I know my limit when it comes to fighting and how to avoid a fight. I am glad to say that I have not been in a serious fight since becoming a martial artist. Good luck to everyone in their training and in life.

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  160. Pierre Brits said:

    I agree with the party from the KUGB. I am from the South frican JKA “Shotokan” and can most certainly state that competition is a small fragment of the bigger picture. As far as evolving into a fighting machine which includes JKA as a self defence mechanism goes with out saying. I challenge any karate-ka to put this to the test and either train in the JKA honbu in Japan or visit the JKA honbu in South Africa. The proof is in the pudding

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  162. ravi kumar said:

    i learn shotokan karate.the technique of shotokan karate is vry gud nd i like it.i learn shotokan karate in bihar.

  163. Andreas said:

    If you’re interested in Shotokan Karate take a closer look at http://karate.zeitformat.de .
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  164. Andreas said:

    If you’re interested in Shotokan Karate take a closer look at karate.zeitformat.de .
    There are tons of information from Agu Uke to Zuki.

    You’ll find a translation button, so you can read articles in your preferred language.

  165. Cletus siatongo(cjv) said:

    I like shotokan very me.

  166. Cletus siatongo(cjv) said:

    I like shotokan very much.

  167. Ai Yagami said:

    Shotokan is for everyone. It actually teaches the art and style and the real correct way of fighting.

    My name is Ai Yagami. I am an Instructor of my Dojo is Japan. Dojo Society.

    - Osaka, Japan.

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  170. Renshi Kidby said:

    My initial reason to enter a comment was to defend Shotokan, but why? It doesn’t need it. It is possibly the most widely practiced style of karate around the world. That must say something. Most definitely it isn’t a sport. Occasionally we have competitions but that is just a side issue to the main purpose of training. Shotokan develops both mind and body whilst giving a great proven self-defence system. Those who are good at competition aren’t necessarily good on the street. Competition isn’t true fighting!

    I speak from over 40 years of practice and experience, as a 7th Dan. There are no bad styles of karate nor bad martial arts just bad students and poor instructors. There are pros and cons in many systems. Find a style or system that best suits you then work at it with dedicated diligence until it works for you. One who criticises other systems or styles does so out of ignorance.

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