Gradings are always a nervous time. What if I forget something? What if I get it wrong? I can’t do it? Doubt can creep in. The thing to remember is that you are grading because you can do it! You do know it! Your instructors believe in you!
Practice and Practice and Practice, the three P’s. It shows. On the big day, do your best and give it all, as this is what we look for. Getting to class and then to grading is half the battle. Finishing it is the rest. Be proud of what you have achieved when you are done. It is not easy and gradings are built to challenge you mentally as well as physically.
Today, we see some more great efforts from our students.
For the kids Amelia graded to her Orange tip, while Taine, Zakk, Jack and Angus all achieved their Yellow Belts. Obviously you have all been practicing hard.
For the adults a great display of effort and heart. A well deserved Yellow Belt for Angela, nailing those backwards rolls :) and for Orange Tips, Krista, Shane and Troy smashed it out.
Well done to everyone. Onwards to your next rank. Next grading is December. Train hard and you may be ready to do it all again.
A great article regarding Karate, Kata and Self Defence from our friends over at Martial musings. Enjoy…
Excerpt: “There are a lot of opinions of whether Kata (or forms) and traditional martial arts are worth practicing… particularly these days with the MMA, Muay Thai, BJJ and other combat sports taking the limelight.
Many are in the camp of thinking that traditional martial arts training, and particularly Kata training (Kata = forms or patterns used in traditional martial arts) is a complete waste of time and training should be spent on more functional drills and sparring; while others feel Kata training is the “soul” of their art and perform their kata because it’s part of their heritage without a clear understanding of the meaning of the movements….”
Well well what do you know, we made the NZ Herald and the Pegasus post. Our FREE community kids self defence classes have proved very popular with over 60 kids coming through our first three sessions. Parents and kids had a great time and were very satisfied with what they learnt and saw. We achieved an average rating of 9.9 our of 10.
And we even made the papers featuring in:
For the local community we feel it is crucial to be able to give kids a chance to defend themselves.
“It’s a no-brainer to at least give them some broad-based tips; it can make them more confident and give them a chance if they get into a difficult situation.” says Head Instructor Chris Cameron
We think it should be treated like swimming and become a core requirement at all schools. We will continue to look at offering the free sessions “as long as there is a need,” and was also planning to introduce longer, four-week self-defence courses for kids and adults.
To find out more and book your child in our next course follow our Facebook page or contact Chris on 021 823 857
First up, Self-defence is all about using your smarts — not your fists.
The attacker, who is probably already on edge and hyped up on adrenaline — and usually something else — may become even more angry and violent if you try to defend yourself. Sometimes the best way to deal with any attack or threat of attack is to try to get away. This way, you’re least likely to be injured.
One of the best ways to avoid an attack is to trust your instincts. Your body is full of special abilities for sensing your environment. Your intuition as some call it combined with a splash of common sense can help you get out of trouble. It can tell you it is a good idea to move on rather than hang around.
Sometimes attackers are people you know. It is sad but true. This is where what self defence experts call de-escalation techniques come into play to defuse a situation. Like giving the mugger the money rather than trying to fight. Or perhaps if someone harasses you when there’s no one else around, you can de-escalate things by agreeing with him or her. You don’t have to actually believe the taunts, of course, you’re just using words to get you out of a tight spot. Then you can redirect the bully’s focus (“Oh, I just heard the bell for class”), and calmly walk away from the situation.
Not losing your temper is also a great de-escaltion technique. learn how to manage your anger so you can talk and walk away without using your fists.
De-escalation doesn’t always work, it can only help if you remain calm and don’t add fuel to the fire.
Do things that help keep you safe. It is that simple.
- Understand your surroundings. Walk or hang out in areas that are open, well lit, and well traveled. Become familiar with the buildings, parking lots, parks, and other places you walk. Pay particular attention to places where someone could hide — such as stairways and bushes.
- Avoid shortcuts that take you through isolated areas.
- If you’re going out at night, travel in a group.
- Make sure your friends and parents know your daily schedule (classes, sports practice, club meetings, etc.).
- If you go on a date or with friends for an snack, let someone know where you’re going and when you expect to return.
- Check out hangouts. Do they look safe? Are you comfortable being there? Ask yourself if the people around you seem to share your views on fun activities — if you think they’re being reckless, move on.
- Be sure your body language shows a sense of confidence. Look like you know where you’re going and act alert.
- When riding on public transportation, sit near the driver and stay awake. Attackers are looking for vulnerable targets.
- Carry a cell phone if possible. Make sure it’s programmed with your parents’ or close friends phone number(s).
- Be willing to report crimes in your neighborhood and school to the police.
One of the best – Voice power
If you ever need help use your voice shouting words like “let go” “go away” “leave me alone” anything that can grab the attention of those around you. Besides, loud shouting in someones ear also works as a great deterrent. It hurts your ears!!!
Self Defence classes
I am biased I know, but the only way to prepare yourself to fight off an attacker is to take a self defence class. It would be awesome to be able to read an article like this one and be fully prepared. Unfortunately somethings you can only learn from trying.
A good self defence class will teach you more than just techniques. They will teach you how to size up the situation and environment you are in so you can decide what to do. They will also teach you how to use your flinch reflex effectively as well as other techniques for breaking an attackers grasp etc.
One of the best things you should take away from any self defence class is self confidence. Hesitation can get you in big trouble. The last thing you want to be thinking is “Can I really pull this self defence thing off?” Dry runs in any class gives you the confidence and understanding to know you can pull that off if need be.
Find a local self defence class and get some practice in for you and your family. You never know what is around the corner and it is better to be able to give you and your loved ones a chance rather than none to get out of trouble.
Find out more about our Self Defence classes.
In today’s world violence seems to be glorified in everything from music to video games. While if hollywood is to be believed Martial Arts brims with violence you would be surprised to find out that the opposite was true and martial arts training is very beneficial for kids. Below are ten reasons why you should be considering Karate for your children.
- Fostering Self-Discipline – One of the core beliefs of the Karate is an absolute focus on self-discipline. Today’s kids are so accustomed to receiving instant gratification that lessons in self-restraint and discipline aren’t always easy to come by. Kids with a Karate background, however, are continually reminded of how essential self-discipline is.
- Boosting Socialization Skills – Kids who don’t always thrive in highly social environments may find it easier to get to know people and make new friends when they’re in a room filled with peers who share a common interest. Devotees to the martial arts are able to get to know one another through shared pursuits.
- Encouraging Physical Activity – Limiting screen time is a great idea when it comes to getting kids off the couch and encouraging them to be more active, but it only goes so far. Enrolling an inactive child in such a physically demanding pastime not only discourages the sedentary lifestyle she’s used to, but also gives her an enjoyable activity that inspires her to keep moving.
- Learning to Set and Achieve Goals – Most forms of Karate are based around an accomplishment system of colored belts that signify the wearer’s degree of skill. When your child strives toward each new belt, he’s learning valuable lessons about setting and reaching his goals and how instant gratification is not how the world works. The understanding of working hard to achieve your goals is a key facet in all Karate training.
- Increased Self-Esteem – Give your child’s self-esteem level will get a boost with every new move he masters and every belt he earns. Confidence comes with achievement, kids who struggle with a low sense of self-worth usually become more confident as time progresses while they’re enrolled in a Karate class.
- Instilling a Sense of Respect – Learning any martial arts style will require your child to show her instructor unflinching respect. Today’s kid culture doesn’t always include respect for authority, adults or those in advanced positions. Class teaches them to focus and pay respect to their instructor and other students as well as the environment (dojo) they are training in.
- Encouraging Non-Violent Conflict Resolution – Thinking that Karate instruction promotes violent behavior is justified if your only experience with the activity comes from television or movies. In fact, many defensive styles teach kids peaceful, non-violent conflict resolution skills and emphasize the importance of avoiding a physical altercation.
- Improving Listening Skills – In order to master the skills she’s being taught and advance through the belt ranks, your child will have to exercise superior listening skills. Kids who aren’t always adept when it comes to paying attention to what they’re told can benefit from the verbal instruction in the dojo.
- Developing Teamwork Skills – Whether he’s breaking boards to get a new belt or sparring in a practice setting to master a new maneuver, there are few things that your child does in his Karate classes that will be done on his own. Working together to learn new things and accomplish goals is an important life lesson for kids to learn, and instruction in Karate can help your child learn that lesson.
- Improvement in Other Areas of Life – The benefits of martial arts training don’t end in the dojo. The boost in confidence, increased fitness level and new cooperation skills will also help your child navigate the academic and social aspects of school, affect their behavior at home and have an all-around good influence on them as they develop into an adult.
You may even find that training is the perfect activity for your entire family to do together. Along with Swimming we think karate is one of the essential things that provide your children with a solid foundation for their future. Come along and check out our classes and see karate 4 kids benefits your child.
…so what have you decided to do this year. What goals have you laid out before you? The infamous New Years resolution tradition of setting unattainable goals is upon us. So many of us simply set ourselves up to fail right from the beginning. Much like the karate curriculum, goals should be broken down into smaller chunks which can be achieved and measured progress seen. Thus contributing to the motivation to complete the overarching goal you may have.
So for everyone I recommend reviewing those resolutions you have set. How realistic are they? If you broke them down into smaller goals how realistic are each of those goals? Take a good look and approach your 2017 year from a different viewpoint and look back at the end at everything you achieved.
Here’s a simple example: Lets say you want to do 50,000+ kicks this year. That’s a 1000 kicks each week. Whoa there! You say what. you are cra cra, as my kids say, a 1000 kicks no way!
But lets look again, 1000 kicks / 7 days is only 140ish kicks per day. 140 kicks / 2 legs is only 70 kicks per leg. Take your basic kick type of front kick, roundhouse, side kick, reverse side kick, outside crescent, inside crescent, hook kick and you have 7 kicks. So 10 kicks of each type on each leg every day makes 140 kicks a day. Say 2 secs per kick and some rounding gives us 5 mins total time each day to compete your daily goal. Boom you are doing 1000 a week without even breaking a sweat.
So then you can macro scale it up. 140 kicks a day takes 5 mins. Just 35 mins a week would see you do 50,000+ kicks this year. 50,000!!
Ask yourself, How good would your kicks be if you did a 1000 a week?
Take your goal and reverse engineer it, you will surprised with the results and what you could actually achieve. Making your New Years resolution an actual reality and not consigned to the goal setting rust heap like so many others.
A quick reminder. Classes start back Monday 9th of January at usual times. Beginner Kids 4.30pm, Yellow belt+ Kids 5.30pm, Adults 6.30pm
Wednesday classes have the same times but are now in the same location as Monday classes; Parklands community lounge. Kids 4.30pm, Families 5.30pm, Adults 6.30pm.
We are super excited to also start a Wednesday Adults class at 6.30pm. So if you or anyone you know wants to get fit and have some fun or you want some extra training this class is now available for you.
See you all in class next week, osu
Wow the end of the year is here. We just want to say a big thank you to everyone of you. We have really enjoyed bringing Martial Arts to the community and being able to pass our knowledge on to you. It has been an amazing year for us, opening a new club, grading new students and seeing them conquer their fears and nerves. Seeing our young kids develop throughout the year has been a real privilege.
We are looking forward to 2017. There are many things underway to make your training even better and to grow the club. New classes, changes to our website, visits from masters overseas, tournaments, more gradings, family fun days etc it is going to be an exciting year.
Classes resume as normal from the 09th January 2017 from 4.30pm, Parklands Community Lounge.
Unfortunately we do have one sad bit of news. Queenspark School has increased their hire fees for the hall. This has made it to expensive to keep using that facility. So from the new year all Wednesday classes will be at the Parklands Community Lounge where we have our Monday classes. Same times as before just a different location. However this is also a bit exciting as it gives the club a solid home for the next year for all classes.
You have all done so well this year and we hope you have enjoyed the classes. Have a great Christmas break and Happy New Year. Be Safe and have fun.
Most of all Keep Practising!
Sensei Chris & Sensei Mike
Unfortunately, over the years I’ve noticed that many of those interested in karate in general don’t have a solid understanding of what kata is actually for and what it’s really intended to do.
Therefore, their opinions about its worth are often stalled or go off in directions that lead nowhere productive.
There are, in fact, a number of misconceptions about kata.
Among the more obvious are the following:
“A kata tells a story.”
No, it doesn’t. Combat — even a simple confrontation — is enormously chaotic and unpredictable. No “story” could be implemented that could be even remotely applicable to the spontaneity of a fight.
“A kata allows us to practice the more deadly techniques of karate.”
No, not if you’re just going through the motions.
A finger stab done 10,000 times against an imaginary opponent’s eye doesn’t teach you any more about the effectiveness of that technique than doing it once. All the kata repetitions in the world won’t change that. A kata is just a combination of techniques, randomly assembled. Feel free to create your own; it’ll be just as valuable.
Understanding the true role of kata in karate-do depends to a considerable extent on a familiarity with the three pillars that support it. Grasp these concepts and you’ll find it easier to see the place of kata in your training and to make informed judgments about its practice.
It’s easy to look at a kata from outside and conclude it’s an arbitrary arrangement of techniques. A kata has structural integrity. The movements may be fast and light, or slow and heavy, but they make sense. They’re applicable. Standing on one leg and unleashing flippy kicks at head height while rotating in a circle might look impressive, but there’s no solidity, no proper application of power. Watch a karateka do a kata and they should be balanced, their body integrated, and all parts coordinated. You won’t find them tumbling or upside down. That’s because the kata has structural integrity.
Shin, or “mind,” is a familiar term to martial artists. In this context, it refers to the coherence of the kata. If you think of kotai as the bones of the kata, shin is the collection of muscles that allow it to articulate. Those muscles have to work in concert.
Ever see a kata in which the performer does a split or some other spectacular motion? Remember what happened next? Probably not. The movements of most contrived kata tend to be very fast and spastic. But in almost every case, if you could watch the kata in slow motion, you’d see that the move following one of those dramatic actions is weak, largely meaningless in a combative sense. The performer has to stand up or reorient himself. The kata stops, in effect. Then it restarts. It’s disjointed. There’s no smooth articulation.
In a real kata, there’s a flow. The components work together.
A real kata — one generated over a long period and by those who knew what they were doing and practiced by someone who’s been correctly taught it — has intent behind it. There’s a unifying set of principles. In some, these principles will be rapid movement, either in and out or laterally. In others, it will be a strong sense of predation — karateka doing it looks like a tiger stalking prey.
In poorly constructed kata, the performer looks like a little kid in a big toy store, his attention in a dervish-like spin. In a good kata, there’s the sense that the practitioner is controlling time and space, setting the pace. This is an expression of the focus, the intent of the kata.
Structural integrity. Coherence. Intent. These three pillars support a kata.
To kata or not to kata?
So the question comes back, is a kata worth practising over and over again. If it has the three pillars then yes. If it is made up of flashy movements that do not flow into one another and demonstrate and intention then in my opinion no it is not worth you investing your time in repeating again and again.
Any sequence of moves in a kata should be able to be pulled out of the kata and work in their own right. If the kata cannot be pulled part like this then it is simply a pretty dance without the three pillars you need. So check your kata, is it really effective or is it simply some pretty moves mashed together. Observe, question, challenge your Sensei should clearly be able to tell you the three pillars of that kata.
So, what’s the secret to great head movement?
It has to do with understanding what good head movement is and how to do it. You’ll need to learn the different styles of head movement and how to train the skill. While you’re learning and practicing, you’re still going to get hit a lot.
For the serious fighters, you don’t really have a choice. Head movement is a standard boxing skill you need to be competitive. Your head can only take so many shots from trained opponents. But there’s no greater feeling than being able to completely avoid a punch (besides a KO).
The idea of head movement is basically to move the target. Instead of trying to defend the target (your head) all the time, you just move it. This way, your hands are free to attack. The art of head movement is so misunderstood that to the untrained eye, people think boxing is brutal and raw and mindless because the fighters on TV don’t seem to be defending themselves.
Check out this head movement video, be there then not there https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSX0PCQXiO4
A Martial Arts Karate in Christchurch
Welcome to Shizoku Martial Arts karate club in Christchurch. Truly a Family Martial Arts club, its right there in our name, Shizoku = family. If your goals are to learn ways to protect you and your loved ones in today’s world, you have come to the right place.
Parklands Recreation Hall,
75 Queenspark drive
Christchurch, New Zealand
Woodend Community Centre
School Road, Woodend
Call +64 21 823 857
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org