Karate People

I have a question for you people and I’m not being derogatory or condescending, I honestly want to know. Do you think your training would help you in a street fight?

Without the structured rules of your chosen sport, I see you as being vulnerable in a fight where there’s no referee to stop things if you get hit in the crotch or get a head butt. I was once told that the knowledge coming from one street fight equals about five years of training.

Probably the best aspect of karate/tkd is the physical conditioning, not the art itself. Anyone doing a class for an extended period of time is bound to be in better condition than most people, which increases the odds in your favor during a confrontation.

Only an idiot would expect someone else to follow rules during a confrontation. I supplement my training with eye rakes, throat strikes, and low kicks to the legs. For desperate circumstances, I’ve also strengthened my hands and practice Kina Mutai.

HH

Depends what you mean by “karate”. Our club is not strictly a shotokan club anymore, but it is still karate.

In recent years (in the UK at least) there has been a resurgence of kata application and “real world” training, pushed by guys like Geoff Thompson, Iain Abernethy and Harry Cook.

Our training includes, throws, chokes, joint locks, grappling and bag work. We don’t do any competition training and never have done.

We spend a lot of time working on pre-emptive strikes, which is the most likely use of any training. We also do a lot of kata application training, which encompasses many different scenarios and the various responses. We also practice defences against the various “habitual acts of violence” which are the most common assaults you tend to face.

But we also stress that fancy flippy kicks and long stances are unlikely to be used in most self defence situations.

Here are a couple of good links on realistic karate training:

http://www.iainabernethy.com/

Of course it is going to help in a street fight, you are learning to block and counter. It is not going to make someone a great street fighter, or probably not even a good street fighter, but training in a traditional martial art is definately going to significantly increase the odds of being able to defend yourself. Like headhunter said, physical conditioning is a big factor.

One of the instructors I had didn’t teach any sparing. He believed that since you couldn’t groin someone, or gouge their eyes out when sparing, it wasn’t a real representation of a fight so why do it.

Instead we did a lot of applications from Kata,such as throws, locks, breaks, sweeps, etc. Also a lot of conditioning work, heavy bags, striking post for knuckles and shins,etc.

Cheers,
BigUrukhai

Anyone see that super-cheese karate show on MTV? These guys were all high-degree black belts and they square off kind of like MMA, but it’s out on a beach on some platform. These guys could flip and high kick and all that, but then they start fighting and it was pathetic.

I was thinking why does anyone continue in TKD or regular martial arts when it’s completely impractical in a real fight when compared to MMA. I would have taken ANY of the fighters on the UFC show over these katate world champions. It just looked silly.

Hi Travis7,

First let me say that I’ve not really seriously trained Karate per se. I do however know someone who has spent his entire life training in Martial arts, and his base art is Shotokan (trained under Master Oshima).

According to him, if Karate is indeed taught by an individual who truly has a deep level knowledge of the art and understands how to teach it, then Karate is very practical and effective in a street fight.

At the higher levels one learns to dissolve the external “form” and become more fluid and adaptive. In other words, the katas are and their applications are supposed to teach you how to use proper body mechanics to produce power, stability, etc… rather than relying on pure muscular strength. They are also designed to teach you invaluable mental, psychological, and yes, even spiritual truths.

In fact, if you get deep enough into any Martial art, the ultimate goal is the same. The human body is the human body and therefore there are really only so many ways that it can operate optimally. It therefore only makes sense that many people would eventually come to similar conclusions, or ways of doing things. Really the only difference is in their way of getting those principles across to their students.

Think about it this way, ask any good BJJ artist (or grappler for that matter) what their idea of optimal performance would be, and 9 times out of 10 their answer would resemble a seemingly effortless performance. The same thing would happen in every combat sport whether it be boxing, wrestling, Wing Chun, Muy Thai, etc…

As Dan John just wrote in his recent article “less is more”. Or in other words, optimal performance is usually the result of supreme efficiency.

Supreme efficiency can only be developed through endless repetition of movement until the movements become second nature, or in other words, you don’t have to think to do it. This is the reason why traditional martial arts stress the importance of Kata practice.

Because if the structure is off by even a fraction of an inch, then it may break down when under pressure. Perfection is the goal, and this approach is honestly one of the things that I feel a lot of MMA stylists could learn from Traditional Martial artists.

Good training,

Sentoguy

[quote]travis7 wrote:
I have a question for you people and I’m not being derogatory or condescending, I honestly want to know. Do you think your training would help you in a street fight?

Without the structured rules of your chosen sport, I see you as being vulnerable in a fight where there’s no referee to stop things if you get hit in the crotch or get a head butt. I was once told that the knowledge coming from one street fight equals about five years of training.[/quote]

how could it not?istarted in taekwon do,then got into muay thai and wing chun.Now if some fucker picks me over some untrained guy in the street,im definately gonna have an advantage.

Apart from technique,i also have taken punches and kicks to most parts of my body,and the average joe will often go into shock when hit hard for the first time,so of course its gonna help.i can knock someone out with a head kick but im not gonna try that outside of a comp,but tae kwon do sure teaches you how to really kick,and a good,round house to the knee or front kick to the balls is gonna incapacitate most people…

i dont know were the 5 yr thing comes from,but i rekon its shitas most guys that really know how to fight rarely start shit anyway-they know what they can do and dont need to throw there weight around.

I am going to have to disagree with Sentoguy here.

I do not think practicing kata will have any effect on one’s fighting ability.
I agree that efficiency from repetition is key to have good technique. That is what makes boxers the best punchers, wrestlers/judoka/samboists/bjj players the best grapplers.

I do not think kata will answer any questions. I do think that the traditional martial arts have things of value to offer people. Those being exercise, values/morals.

Some guys who do traditional martial arts or Karate are good fighters. Ryoto Machida comes from a karate family, he knocked out Rich Franklin. GUys like Andy Hug, Francisco Filho were pretty good k-1 fighters and would be tough for the average guy on the street. Gomi, Pride 73kg champ does karate. Mirko Crocop is said to have had some karate training, which would explain why his kicks do not resemble any of the dutch fighters or even Branko Cikatic(first K-1 champ), whos gym Mirko used train at in the beginning of Mirko’s k-1 career.

In America you have guns so that would be the best. In Japan guns are illegal. They are impossible to get unless you are Yakuza. Some training is better than nothing even if it is karate or judo.

For the same reasons as mentioned above it can only benefit to have greater control over your body, endurance, and regular sparring.

I trained in TKD and Hapkido.

Both have advantages.

In TKD, we worked more forms (Kata- japanese, Poomse- Korean)and kicks.
We trained for olympic style tournaments (high level of physical fitness).

In Hapkido, we trained joint locks, throws, breaks, chokes, and weapons. My choice of weapons was the Escrima sticks. I figured if I was in a fight and needed to find a weapon, many objects are close to the size of an Escrima stick.

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

When comparing grappling to the striking arts, several things are important to remember:
(1) Almost every fight begins with both guys on their feet.
(2) In competitions between grapplers and strikers, the strikers are usually barefoot. This rarely would happen in real fighting. Having a solid shoe (or steel-toed) makes a kick much more devestating.
(3) The strikers are forbidden, in competition, from throat strikes, eye gouges, and other such ‘goodies’. In combat with a BJJ guy, for ex, I’m going to drive my fingers right through his eyeballs. If I miss, I will secure a head grip and bite his throat through or bite off an ear (for starters). I’d rather take my chances with a judge and jury instead of being in a wheelchair for life, or dead.

HH

There are far too many variables involved to make even a close determination on this very old topic.

Size, age, strength, attitude, intelligence, athletic ability, experience are only a few things that would come into play.

I really don’t understand why over the years this question comes up. If you want to find out how you would do against a good, strong, mean martial artist get your ass out and find a big, bad 5th DAN and tell him you think you can kick his ass in a “street” fight. You’ll get your answer fairly quickly with no need to ask an internet forum.

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
When comparing grappling to the striking arts, several things are important to remember:
(1) Almost every fight begins with both guys on their feet.
(2) In competitions between grapplers and strikers, the strikers are usually barefoot. This rarely would happen in real fighting. Having a solid shoe (or steel-toed) makes a kick much more devestating.
(3) The strikers are forbidden, in competition, from throat strikes, eye gouges, and other such ‘goodies’. In combat with a BJJ guy, for ex, I’m going to drive my fingers right through his eyeballs. If I miss, I will secure a head grip and bite his throat through or bite off an ear (for starters). I’d rather take my chances with a judge and jury instead of being in a wheelchair for life, or dead.

HH[/quote]

Um…with all due respect what makes you think that if the rules were changed a BJJ guy couldn’t “drive his fingers through your balls” as well as submit you 100 different way?

I like Senroguy’s words & agree with him about…being effortless. This ultimate state only comes about after practise and repetition which leads to supreme self confidence. Katas in Karate or ‘the form’ in WIng Chun are the way to perfection in technique, self-belief, and confidence in application. All these will help in a street fight. However, they won’t help in any cowardly ambush with a glass or bottle. Being aware & staying streetwise is the best policy.

[quote]Sentoguy wrote:
Hi Travis7,

First let me say that I’ve not really seriously trained Karate per se. I do however know someone who has spent his entire life training in Martial arts, and his base art is Shotokan (trained under Master Oshima).

According to him, if Karate is indeed taught by an individual who truly has a deep level knowledge of the art and understands how to teach it, then Karate is very practical and effective in a street fight.

At the higher levels one learns to dissolve the external “form” and become more fluid and adaptive. In other words, the katas are and their applications are supposed to teach you how to use proper body mechanics to produce power, stability, etc… rather than relying on pure muscular strength. They are also designed to teach you invaluable mental, psychological, and yes, even spiritual truths.

In fact, if you get deep enough into any Martial art, the ultimate goal is the same. The human body is the human body and therefore there are really only so many ways that it can operate optimally. It therefore only makes sense that many people would eventually come to similar conclusions, or ways of doing things. Really the only difference is in their way of getting those principles across to their students.

Think about it this way, ask any good BJJ artist (or grappler for that matter) what their idea of optimal performance would be, and 9 times out of 10 their answer would resemble a seemingly effortless performance. The same thing would happen in every combat sport whether it be boxing, wrestling, Wing Chun, Muy Thai, etc…

As Dan John just wrote in his recent article “less is more”. Or in other words, optimal performance is usually the result of supreme efficiency.

Supreme efficiency can only be developed through endless repetition of movement until the movements become second nature, or in other words, you don’t have to think to do it. This is the reason why traditional martial arts stress the importance of Kata practice.

Because if the structure is off by even a fraction of an inch, then it may break down when under pressure. Perfection is the goal, and this approach is honestly one of the things that I feel a lot of MMA stylists could learn from Traditional Martial artists.

Good training,

Sentoguy[/quote]

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.

Sentoguy is 100% spot on. Your movements have to be effortless and without thought. I am a Sandan (Third) in Goju Ryu karate (okinawan style, for those who don’t know) In my school we also train with sticks, guns, knives, belts and anything that could be used for real world practical application. Our classes are not simply kata.

In order to reach dan, in my school, you have to be able to fight 2 and 3 on 1 with full contact, show your ability to grapple, disarm opponents, holds, takedowns, sweep and joint locks, self defense, fighting multiple opponents from the ground (armed and unarmed) as well as all the typical kata and kumite. Our classes would run three hours or longer, with all those aspects in every class.

But training aside, the main thing that gives me an advantage in real combat, as opposed to kumite, is the knowledge that I know how to handle myself and I know what to do. The fact that I have had a gun pointed at me before, and I have disarmed the attacker, puts me in a beter spot when it happens in reality. The fact that I have had real knives held to my neck, or been put in choke holds and arm bars, and have gotten myself out, gives me an advantage over an attacker.

Finally, the self confidence makes all the difference in the world. I have been at a bar with my instructor when someone tried to start a fight with him. He is a 5’7, 55 year old, retired USMC officer. Not big, not too scary, but when confronted with this man in the bar, he simply stood up, looked him in the eye and said “Sir, you do not want to do that.” The guy was at least 80 pounds heavier than my instructor, and immeadiately backed down. He knew right away that he had gotten into a losing fight.

The answer to the OP’s question, is that it lies in the practicioner themself. Will going to REX KWON DO get you out a street fight alive, probably not. Will dedicating years of your life and energy and blood, sweat and tears into your training give you the ability to walk out of a street fight alive, you bet it will.

[quote]bushidobadboy wrote:
I respectfully disagree with this. I do not believe that katas (and I have done quite a few including sword, knife, nunchuck, bo and aikido katas) offer much more than technique-speed improvement and foot placement awareness. Although important aspects of self-defence, I believe that they have nothing else to add in terms of street defence. Of course katas are wonderful forms of the art when performed well. They also help to develop focus which is an increadibly important self-preservation tool (IMO) but the reality of confrontation can generate emotions vastly different from those felt in the ‘cool heat’ of the kata. Katas are a far cry from the real world IMO.[/quote]

Bushy, if you do your research you will see where kata came from, and what they really are. In all kata are hidden techniques, Bun-kai, the bun-kai are the self defense techniques hidden within the kata. In old asia, when the Japaneese invaded Korea, they did not want their enemies to see them practicing their art, so it was hidden in a kata, so that the artist would remember the technique, without showing it to the enemy. In all kata, regardless of style, there is hidden techniques within them.

Kata is a very important aspect to martial arts training, you just have to know the reason for the kata. If you don’t know the bun-kai, you are just dancing.

[quote]travis7 wrote:
I was once told that the knowledge coming from one street fight equals about five years of training.[/quote]

The person that told you this is an idiot. “Street fights” aren’t like the movies. A street fight can be won with a jab to the chin and a knee to the face or much less. If that takes five years of training then maybe you should leran to keep a handle on yourself.

And yes, my martial art (shotokan Karate as well as training in judo and jujutsu) has helped me in self defense and offense situations.

[quote]olliedog wrote:
I like Senroguy’s words & agree with him about…being effortless. This ultimate state only comes about after practise and repetition which leads to supreme self confidence. Katas in Karate or ‘the form’ in WIng Chun are the way to perfection in technique, self-belief, and confidence in application. All these will help in a street fight. However, they won’t help in any cowardly ambush with a glass or bottle. Being aware & staying streetwise is the best policy.[/quote]

Okay…but how about we train “sports specific?”

I believe in the “economy principal.” This states that there are only so many hours in a day and if you want to train to actually defend yourself in a street confrontation you should do so under very realistic conditions.

That would preclude performing endless hours of Kata.

Here are three things that would help greatly in a street confrontation, there are many more:

-Contact sparring. Not a game of tag like many dojo’s. But a more realistic confrontation. Realistic with in the limits of good sense of course.

-Building size. How many “dangerous” black belts weigh 140 pounds? Um…trick question…Not how many SAY they are dangerous. Not how many students of said BB SAY he dangerous, but how many really are. Don’t get me wrong a well trained fighter at 140 pounds can knock a man much bigger into next Tuesday. But of course we are talking about the average traditional black belt, not a well trained fighter. Hit the Gym and do Squats, Deads and Over head Presses.

-Learn To Grapple. Okay, you don’t want to become a wrestler, and you don’t have to. But we all know by now that many if not most fights end in some sort of grabbing and clinching etc. does it not make sense to at least learn SOME grappling techniques? Your low lethal kicks to the groin and eye gouges will really be useless when you are face down with a grappler on your back…Um…how about learning to defend the take down by learning defensive wrestling maneuvers?

Honestly, kata, board breaking and the like is all well and good for those who are in love with tradition. But keep in mind WHY you are training. And when you examine it closely you will see that there are MANY other things that you can be spending your time doing that will relate directly to a street confrontation. I listed only three above.