How to learn karate – online video tutorial
Learning karate like a new language
When you learn Karate, you are first introduced to individual techniques, such as single blocks and strikes. If we compare learning Karate to learning a new language, you can think of these like the letters of the alphabet. Several techniques strung together may form words. The practice of basic techniques is often simply called “basics”, or Kihon in Japanese. To stay with this analogy, sentences are thus formed by stringing several basic techniques together, for example, in Kihon Ido, which means, “moving basics”, because you step and thus move your body while you block and/or strike.
Typical for Karate are Katas. A Kata is a sequence of movements used for training and to demonstrate technique. In the context of learning Karate, learing Katas then can be akin learning how to form paragraphs.
In this Karate online tutorial, we will follow this approach. We will offer you video clips that demonstrate individual techniques, combinations in partner training and Katas. We are currently processing our video material, adding new techniques and Karate video clips every day. Each video will be accompanied by a step-by-step learning guide with expert advice on how to perform the technique correctly.
Karate Terminology: The Japanese names for the techniques shown vary slightly between different Karate styles. To make it clearer, we have decided to use mostly english, descriptive names, and put Japanese terms for these techniques in brackets, using the nomenclature of Okinawan Karate.
Section 1: Blocks (Uke)
Destroying your attacker’s weapons
All blocking techniques can become powerful attacks against your attacker’s limbs when performed with speed and power. Hard blocks can cause damage to your attacker’s arms and legs and thus remove the threat of further attacks.
- Upper Block (Jodan Uke, Age Uke)
- Middle Block (Chudan Uke)
- Lower Block outside (Gedan Barai)
- Lower Block inside (Gedan Uchi Barai)
- Middle Block Inside (Chudan Ude Uke)
- Lower Block inside (Gedan Ude Uke)
- Hooking Block (Hiki Uke)
- Double-Handed Hooking Block (Toraguchi)
- Middle Side Block (Chudan Shotei Yoko Uke)
- Lower Scooping Block (Gedan Shotei Uke)
- Double open-handed straight block (Morote Shotei uke)
- Stopping Block (Shotei Otoshi Uke)
- Upper wrist block (Jodan Ko-Uke)
- Side block (Chudan Ko-Uke)
- Downwards block (Shotei Uke)
- Upper and lower wrist block (Ko Uke Teisho Uke)
Section 2: Basic Punches and Strikes
Please read our article on Punching in Karate, which is the basis for all the striking techniques demonstrated below.
- Jab Punch (Kizami Zuki)
- Uppercut (Ake Zuki)
- Middle Elbow Strike (Chudan Hiji Ate)
- Palm Heel Strike (Shotei Uchi)
- Palm Heel Strike to the head (Jodan Shotei Uchi)
Section 3: Kicking
It is recommended to practice your kicks on a heavy bag, if possible. It is quite difficult to develop a powerful (and useful) kick only by kicking thin air. By kicking the bag you will learn how to generate power and speed in your kicks. Bag kicking will also strengthen the muscles used for kicking.
- Front Kick (Mae Geri)
- Side Kick (Yoko Geri)
- High Roundhouse Kick (Jodan Mawashi Geri)
- Middle Level Roundhouse Kick (Chudan Mawashi Geri)
- Knee strike (Hiza Geri)
- Back Kick (Ushiro Geri)
- Groin Kick (Kin Geri)
- Stomping Knee Joint Kick (Kansetsu Geri)