Training material

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Discussion' started by wakaba, Sep 5, 2020.

  1. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    Hello,
    Any recommendations/favorites for karate or bokken books/youtube videos?
    Warm up routine?

    Thank you,
    Claire
     
  2. IronMaiden1991

    IronMaiden1991 Active Member

    not much on books, but if you can get hold of the panther productions DVD's the kyokushin and goju ryu series are fantastic collections of warm ups, basics, kata, drills, etc from high ranked practitioners and masters. The Goju Ryu seris with Higaonna sensei is what I use a lot, there's also a kobudo series (seperate) for karate weapons.
     
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  3. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    Interesting, thanks for the info!
     
  4. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Active Member

    I’ve never been a supporter of learning via video, there are simply too many details that can be missed that way, and those details make all the difference. It puts the onus on the student to identify and correct his/her own mistakes, which is entirely unrealistic.

    That being said, I realize Covid has turned our world upside down and people are looking to get creative with how they train.

    One thing to understand is that different karate and Kung fu methods will do things differently, all the way down to the basics and fundamentals. Even different schools of the same system can have significant differences if the featured instructors are on the downstream of different sides of a split that happened within the system. So picking a video to work with could become a liability later, when you are able to join a real school and you find that they are teaching a methodology different from what your video was showing you. You may find yourself needing to unlearn old habits, and that can take time and energy that slows your progress. Worse, you may eventually come to realize that you have not learned what you thought you were learning, because it simply wasn’t possible for transmission via that format. You were going through the motions, but there was no real engine under the hood.

    In my opinion, video can be a useful supplemental tool IF you are getting solid training from a good instructor, in a real school. And then not every video will be appropriate for your training. But if the video is the first line of instruction, or is the only instruction, or is the bulk of the instruction, then I tend to discourage using them, I just really feel it is not the right way to get instruction.

    But as I said, we now live in a Covid world, so maybe we need to bend the rules a bit and do what we can.

    But at the very least, be aware of these shortfalls in video instruction.
     
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  5. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    Thank you. I likely won't ever join a class again, both due to limited availability around here and some personal reasons/limitations. It's really just because I enjoy moving like that, it seems to be a better exercise option for me. So things like not having my arms/hands/legs within the proper number of inches for a move etc., or moving the wrong direction in a kata aren't really pertinent to me. I'm sticking to super basic moves, not doing round houses or horse stance for example. Right now I just stand in natural stance, chamber below ribs, and do the standard karate straight punch (again, my form is likely off and I am slow, but I know enough not to trash my elbows), rising block, downward block. And then put hands up like boxing and do front kicks. Then I swing bokken up and down until I am tired, which doesn't take long.
     
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  6. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Active Member

    As long as you are honest with yourself about the limitations with this approach, then I think you are fine and you can use it as a form of exercise.

    I wouldn’t assume you will never join a real school again. Life has a way of changing and you just never know what might happen down the road, what opportunities might become available.

    Best of luck to you.
     
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  7. aaradia

    aaradia Choy Li Fut and Yang Tai Chi Chuan Student Moderator Supporter

    First and foremost, what Flying Crane said!

    Second, are you only interested in Karate?

    Third, are you willing to pay for an online service or only looking for free? (Remember, you get what you pay for.)
     
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  8. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    Hey, I am mostly interested in Karate because I like the kata in it (tho I have yet to figure one out) and it is what I am most familiar with. It makes me feel strong and centered, and the basics are relatively simple. I have interests in Japanese culture. I've tried Tai Chi, a number of DVDs and books for it (no instructors around here) and I could barely follow the first couple of steps. I have a hard time processing visual instructions and struggle with body-spatial movement stuff (in music/performing arts class I was the one kid doing everything in the opposite direction of everyone else). And it's not that something like Tai Chi will help me with this, I actually have a disability that makes it hard for me to do some of these kinds of things. I was in a local kung fu class, I did ok in the beginning but really struggled after 3-6 months and dropped out, because with my disability the things I did in the class really stuck out and just made me look really dumb, like I could feel the painful cringe as people watched me try some things. The one thing I did like and get something from in it was the bo staff. I had a one on one lesson with the instructor that went pretty good, but after I dropped the class I was so discouraged with my limits that I got rid of all my MA stuff. I had a red oak bokken that I loved, but another student always asked to hold it and use it so I just let him have it.
    There are a couple TDK classes around town but they are mostly catered toward kids and one of them I just wasn't impressed with, I won't join them anyway because of the reasons I mentioned above.
     
  9. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    @IronMaiden1991 Also it looks like he has a lot of DVDs, which ones do you specifically use, from Higaonna sensei?
     
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  10. IronMaiden1991

    IronMaiden1991 Active Member

    Absolutely agree. In the past i have owned books and VCD's of styles I find very cheap just so I can see them and get a flavour of them (its also useful as an animator if I want to animate more interesting fight scenes that look more diverse)

    The only times I refer to DVD's or video are simple:

    1. As reference for something I am actually studying in. Since I have a Goju Ryu (training with knockdown rules) and Judo background, I can reliably use these for reference.
    2. To learn about a style in some way (ie: watching Wushu demos, but not for the purpose of practice) to potentially get a flavour of a style and compare/contrast (such as in the different styles of karate where I may look at Uechi Ryu to compare with Goju, which is closely related to see if there are overlapping and constrasting elements out of interest)
    3. Possibly looking at combinations used by higher level fighters in competition I may not be considering for sparring.

    I've used things like Shuai Jiao clips to contrast Judo and see if there are any tactics I may not have considered, Kyokushin and Karate Kombat clips to think about my knockdown work, etc. But learning a whole art from a DVD is not ideal or able to replace an instructor. A book makes it even harder unless you have incredible reading skill AND body awareness AND the means to practice AND do so with resistence (which Im sure almost all of us do not have such fortune).

    It depends on purpose I guess. I own a Combat Sambo DVD set from Panther Productions I got cheap on Ebay and its like, 10 hours of content for £30, and theres throws and leglock tutorials in there with breakdowns I can look at but I dont consider that to be something I have learned to do. I can just see the Judo elements in Sambo.

    I've met maybe one person who is 'self taught' in this manner and it was a big yikes.
     
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  11. IronMaiden1991

    IronMaiden1991 Active Member

    It depends, theres two box sets that come up on ebay every now and then, theres one thats all the kata with bunkai, and then theres ones dedicated to basics, sparring and conditioning, and I think really those are where most of the mileage will be unless you're actively practicing the style and learning the forms, kakie etc.
     
  12. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Active Member

    Would you feel comfortable sharing more info about your disability? It just might help us in the advice we would offer.

    What you are describing here sounds remarkably like my sister-in-law, who is not disabled, but is simply not athletic. She is living with us for the time being, and during Covid lockdown I am teaching kung fu to she and my wife. She flounders and is often moving opposite to my wife and I. I just tell her, do the best you can, this is a work in progress. I correct what she is doing, but make it clear that I do not expect it to be perfect for a long time. This is a process that requires ongoing work, and the progress can often feel slow, for a long time. We just keep at it.
     
  13. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    I have autism and I don't like to be in front of a bunch of people struggling to understand what everyone else gets and I am left behind. I also don't want to hit others or be hit, thrown around, etc. I can't even do a basic forward roll without almost passing out from dizziness. I had to stop mid workout once and sit down, I could the instructors didn't like it but I needed a break. I have to go at my own pace.
    I'm sorry if this makes me a Yikes person, I am just trying to do an activity I enjoy. If I shouldn't be doing it I can quit.
     
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  14. aaradia

    aaradia Choy Li Fut and Yang Tai Chi Chuan Student Moderator Supporter

    Ah well, thanks for your answer. But that means I don't have any suggestions for you as the only good online resources I know are Kung Fu based. Best of luck to you! Hopefully others can help you.
     
  15. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Active Member

    It does not make you a Yikes person. It sounds like you are more comfortable working one-on-one with an instructor who understands your disability and is able and willing to work with you in whatever way you are able. In that way you can more comfortably explore your limits without the discomfort of other students being in the mix. That makes perfect sense to me.

    You mentioned an interest in kata, and from what you describe, that makes sense to me. You need instruction in solid fundamentals for kata to be anything more than mimicked movement. But even on that level it can be good exercise. Kung fu forms (their equivalent of karate’s kata) are often lengthy and are certainly a good form of exercise. I enjoy my forms practice a lot, it is foundational to how I train. I can see how that would be attractive to you.

    Keep at it in whatever way you are able. I think someday you will find the right instructor who can work effectively with you.
     
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  16. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    Thank you, yeah it would be nice to find someone that could do that. Unfortunately around here not so much. I may end up moving in a year or so and would have more opportunities.
     
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  17. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Active Member

    Ill ask one more question: in what area of South Dakota do you live? I might do a little internet search to see what is in your area.

    Also, do you plan to stay in that area for the foreseeable future? Or might you decide to relocate someday?

    I grew up in a very small farming community in Wisconsin, very little in terms of martial arts training opportunities. I made some connections when in college, and then after graduation I moved to San Francisco in order to have the training opportunities that I wanted. I never regretted it.

    I realize that not everyone is able to make such a move. But it might be worth considering, after Covid is under control.
     
  18. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Active Member

    Any idea where you might go? See my previous post. San Francisco has lots of opportunities, more so than most. But lots of bigger cities will have them to.

    Unfortunately the cost of living is outrageous.
     
  19. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Active Member

    @wakaba, Sorry, I said South Dakota, I realize you live in North Dakota. My bad.
     
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  20. wakaba

    wakaba Valued Member

    Hey, you can ask any questions. I'm in Grand Forks, North Dakota, small college town. It's pretty much been the same 3 MA places for the last 20 years haha. There was a really expensive lightsaber club but I think it fell through. There was a free karate class but it closed right before I tried to talk to them.
    As far as moving, I really don't know. The main reason to move is that it is hard to find a partner as a transgirl here, despite being thin and conventionally attractive. The autism doesn't help either. So idk was thinking Twin cities, getting too far from home is scary for me, and I finally found a job where I can succeed despite my disability and the people love me there, it's just that they wouldn't be able to match cost of living in somewhere like San Fran.
     

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