Styles of Karate.

Discussion in 'Karate' started by Andy Murray, Jul 11, 2002.

  1. Kosokun

    Kosokun Valued Member

    Yes. However, that taboo, is really for changes made willy-nilly by those who don't understand that which it is that they're trying to change. I've seen that changes to things are more readily accepted by those who've shown that they have a solid grasp of the style. For example, in your own system. If some very high ranking person (not the great-grand master, but maybe one of his lieutenants ) were to change some movements in the forms, people might not follow him, but they wouldn't openly deride him.


    Could be. That's not as ridiculous a notion as one's lead to beleive.
    Perhaps it's that they're expanding on what they've done in new directions. I'm inclined to think of Jazz Musicians, or other artists.

    My guess is that probably, they just plod along, nose to the grindstone, then look up one day and find that they're in a radically different place. The Ri came upon them some time ago, but they just looked up to find out where they've been.

    I don't think so. (well, I do agree about your comment on history). I think it depends upon who it is that's doing it. Say, one of your grandmaster's lieutenants? He might be more accepted than someone of lesser rank and experience. The fellow who started Choi Kwang Do? Is he considered a crackpot? Other's like Shogo Kuniba, Hinori Ohtsuka, etc. weren't looked down upon. Perhaps, it's because they had shown themselves to be accomplished prior to venturing out on their own.

    Of cours, I think that race does play a part in it. A person of Asian heritage might be more accepted than an Occidental.

  2. Andy Murray

    Andy Murray Sadly passed away. Rest In Peace.

    Hi Kosokun,

    So you reckon that someone high up (non willy-nilly) in an organisation can spin off in another direction, and no-one will deride them for it? Seems a little Idealistic to me.

    I don't know about that myself, but the guy who first claimed the Earth wasn't flat must have had a hard time at first, Probably a shortage of volunteers to sail over the edge I would imagine, Just as well for him he turned out to be right I suppose.

    I learned something new from a very basic form the other day, something I've been practicing for years. If I'd assumed all knowledge and gone off at a tangent, then I would never have found it.

    Maybe one day I'll find Ri.


  3. Kosokun

    Kosokun Valued Member

    perhaps, but it was just an observation.

  4. Andy Murray

    Andy Murray Sadly passed away. Rest In Peace.

    So would I as a non Karateka be able to recognise the different styles of Karate by merely observing a class? As a chinese stylist I can recognise subtle differences between the CMA by stances, posture, handshapes and forms. What would you folks say typifies the different Karate styles?

  5. Kosokun

    Kosokun Valued Member

    It'd be no different, Andy, than a non kung fu'er recognizing the different styles of kung fu.

    There are some, i.e., Shorin vs. Naha types that'd be obvious. But, others like different shorin schools, where it'd be hard.

    Just like No Chinese vs. So chinese or Wing chun vs. Sil lum. Pretty similar. Choi Lay Fut vs. Fut Ga or Wu vs. Sun style tai chi, might be harder.

  6. Andy Murray

    Andy Murray Sadly passed away. Rest In Peace.

    Isshin Ryu

    I nicked this little snippet from an Isshin Ryu site; kind of gives what I was hoping to find on all the styles of Karate here, though much better described, as 'hallmarks'. How you might recognise a style.

    The system we teach is Isshin-Ryu Karate, one of the many forms of karate that originated in Okinawa. Okinawa is given credit for developing karate as we know it today and passing it down through the centuries. Our style of karate, founded by Tatsuo Shimabuku, is a combination of two older styles, Goju Ryu and Shorin Ryu. It was designed specifically for personal combat, however, Americans have modified the fighting practice to enable us to participate in sporting events.

    The hallmarks of Isshin-Ryu Karate include:

    Techniques that are delivered from natural stances as opposed to wide, locked positions, giving the practitioner mobility and dexterity;
    A vertical fist compared to a horizontal fist. Although not exclusive to Isshin-Ryu, the vertical fist position is unique compared to most styles;
    Close-in techniques and low kicks for street practicality;
    Hand techniques and foot techniques are equally stressed, so that a practitioner learns to use all of the weapons at his or her disposal

    I was particularly interested in the Vertical fist, and the name Shorin Ryu. Is there a link between Shorin Ryu, and Shorinji Kenpo?

  7. ladyhawk

    ladyhawk Valued Member

  8. Thomas Vince

    Thomas Vince New Member

    This one gonna hurt....!

    As most of you know I have never been afraid to express my opinion, however strong on a topic in this forum. I apologize for nothing, take what you need leave the rest for a real martial artist.
    Karate has been one of the most *******ized and over developed arts in the world today. Even Tae Kwon Do stylists are walking into my studios with the idea of studying Karate instead of TKD. A martial art is a martial art and will survive on two very basics foundations.

    1. The money, whether it be by country, capalistic, or political viewpoint.

    2. The Instructor's influence, knowledge and profinciency in the art

    An absolutely unknown person could practice with written methods of ma technique and make a name for that art, in any name they choose. In reality there is no such thing as tradition. Tradition in the martial arts creates a lighted path for the masses but does not insure a good practitioner. In retrospect I beleive that un-traditional fighters are the real *******s in the MA's, ruining the philosophical applications that are important to the martial artists way of life.
    Vajra Mukti existed before almost any other MA coming out of the Dravidian and Aryan Wars yet so many insist crap like Krav Maga, American Karate and so many others are the answer to ultimate self defense. I say ******** to this and to Krav Maga, hitting the same point more than twice causes a desensitized target that no longer feels pain so stop hittiing the same place more than once!
    Shotokan shares the exact same Kata's and movements with so many other arts that it should be considered a universal self defense system and everyone should just take shotokan, yet shotokan leaves out some very important principles that other's take as their foundation to create autonomy.
    It is truly rediculous and I hope that each of us just simply finds a good instructor because in the end competitions, trophies and the number of students means nothing to the individual who really has a need to defend themselves.
    I admonish each individual to find an art that pragmatically approaches self defense and protectionism in a realistic viewpoint and not be taken in by ring fighters, traditionalists, or competition trophy houses that offer classes. Be realistic in your approach to self defense and don't be taken in by the crap that is smelling up the very essence of MA's in the world today. Each and everyone of us needs to prevent a defective gene pool where the MA's is concerned. Good luck to all in their personal quest to be the best they can be!
  9. Freeform

    Freeform Fully operational War-Pig Supporter

    Just been thinking about the whole vertical/corkscrewing thing, and would say that neither of them is 'superior' to the other. THe vertical punch would offer more protection to the ribs and probably be a little more faster. But the way mucsles work and bone alighnment I'd say that the corkscrew is moe powerfull. try doing a press-up or lean against the wall in both positions and feel t for yourself (or alternatively just hit something) and see for yourself.

    Been exposed to the whole 'bone edge/mucsled forearm' blocking debate before. I'd say both are equally valid as 'blocks' but using the bone edge is also a strike. I've know of doormen (who were Karate-ka) using shuto-uke (Knife hand block/strike) to break aggressors arms when throwing haymakers at them.

    A request out to the two Robs and/or Andrew Green, give us a brief rundown (or not so brief) on the differences of Shuri-te and Naha-te styles please (you guys just have a scary amount of Karate knowledge).

  10. Andrew Green

    Andrew Green Member

    I find that an inbetween position is strongest and fastest and that is usually the way I punch. But everyone is different, maybe we shouldn't all be punching the same way ;)

    Both are valid, It depends on what your doing with that action. If I'm blocking a high round kick, muscle. If I'm blocking the side of someones neck, Bone... Depends on whether using the bone will hurt me or him more.

    I think that really there is not a huge difference. The follinging is pretty general, and there are always counter examples:

    Naha stlyes go heavier on conditioning. Both through weight training and body hardening.

    Shuri footwork is more natural step straight, stand in a natural position. Naha uses a circular step and a slightly pigeon toed stance.

    Shuri styles use hip rotation more in strikes, naha styles tend to use rooting to the ground and tension at the end of a strike.

    Naha uses a more regulated breathing, shuri is more natural.

    Shuri styles tend to be more agile. I don't think there are any jumping techniques in Naha based kata, Shuri ones occasionally have a double kick or a jumping crescent kick. Shuri styles use more evasive actions while naha styles stand there ground.

    Naha styles tend to use more circular actions in front of the body (wax on, wax off) while shuri styles tend to use be more circular in body movement (spinning)

    These are not universal to all shuri and naha based schools, just some of my observations. The differences are not really that big though in my opinion, they come down to training methods as much as anything else.

    The main Naha-te based schools are Uechi-ryu and Goju-ryu.

    The Shuri-te schools mainly fall under the name shorin ryu, but there are quite a few different Shorin ryus. Isshin ryu is often considered just another branch of Shorin ryu, but it does contain elements of Goju-ryu.

    A lot of it is kind of hard to explainm like the power generation in a punch. shuri styles come more from twisting, while naha styles come more from sinking. If that makes any sense :D:confused: its easier to demonstrate...

    Of course I've left out the Japanese styles... But everyone knows there not "Real" karate anyway :D
  11. Freeform

    Freeform Fully operational War-Pig Supporter

    Cheers Andrew,

    I've heard it said that the Naha-te styles are more closely related to Chinese styles than anything else and place a greater emphasis on breathing (I heard this from a Gojo Ryu BB)?

    Any thought?

  12. Andrew Green

    Andrew Green Member

    I'm not sure, many of the instructors that would be considered part of the Naha-te spent time in China closer to the present time in the lineage tree. But they modified their stuff as well. Both are distinctly Okinawan though, Uechi ryu is perhaps a little more Chinese IMO, but its hard to say. I can't tell you much about the Chinese styles of the time.

    As for breathing, yes Naha stlyes tend to focus more on regulated breathing.
  13. KarateMom

    KarateMom New Member

    I only know about American Kempo Karate.
  14. Thomas Vince

    Thomas Vince New Member

    Did somebody mention American Kenpo Karate!
  15. TkdWarrior

    TkdWarrior Valued Member

    "Did somebody mention American Kenpo Karate!"
    Nahhhh..i thought she said kempo karate....nobody mentioned yer name... :p
  16. Thomas Vince

    Thomas Vince New Member

    It would be interesting to know who teaches American "Kempo" Karate in South Carolina.
  17. gojutejutsuryu

    gojutejutsuryu New Member

    Everything you wish yourself and your loved ones this festive season. STAY FOREVER YOUNG AND MAY THE FORCE ALWAYS BE WITH YOU.



    As far as my records go (I am not a Shotokan stylist) and please correct me if I am wrong, the lineage of Shotokan goes something like this.

    Funakoshi Gichin. (1868 to 1957)
    Founder of "Shoto-kan" in +/- 1936) (Shoto was Funakoshi's pen name and Kan just means club)

    TAUGHT BY: (Main lineage)

    Yasutsune Itosu. (1830 to 1914)
    Developed the 5 x Pinan kata's and kata's Bassai-sho and Kanko-sho. A master of "Tomari-te".

    TAUGHT BY: (Main lineage)

    Sokon "Bushi" Matsumura. (1798 to 1889)
    A grand master of "Shuri-te"

    TAUGHT BY: (Main lineage)

    "Karate" Sakugawa. (1733 to 1818)
    From "Akata", from the port town of Shuri , Okinawa.
    A "Shuri-te great grand master.

    TAUGHT BY: (Main lineage)

    Takahara ?

    Shotokan missed being the first style from which other styles grew by about 300 years on the above lineage line.


  18. Jamo

    Jamo New Member


    The founder of Shudokan Karate, Soke Kanken Toyama (classmate of Funakoshi & others), didn't even look at the way he taught as anything but 'just karate'. Shudokan was just the name of the training hall, just like Shotokan was the name of Funakoshi's training hall. It wasn't until after Toyama died that his students sought to give their style a name, to differentiate it from the rest.

    Again...the same wisdom from one of my instructors...fried rice is just fried rice, no matter who's cooking it (or what extra ingredients they happen to throw into it).

    Sekai no Karate Do

    Last edited: May 16, 2003
  19. Master J

    Master J Guest

    wado-ryu, my specialty, is a quick and very nimble style. It uses many moves to unbalance and topple your opponent.

    Isshin ryu uses vertical punches
  20. alman5000

    alman5000 New Member

    Most of karate styles come from kung fu. So most of them are very similar. Some styles are a combination of two or more styles so most styles are very similar.

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