17 Nov Karate (Shotokan)
Karate is a very disciplined martial art and quite demanding physically and intellectually. The instructors here teach and practice Shotokan Karate. This is the ancient japanese martial art developed to defend oneself without weapons. Karate-do translates into the way of the empty hand. There was a time when the daimyo in Okinawa got paranoid and ordered that there be no weapons of any form to be found on his citizens. The people still needed to defend themselves against thieves so they developed this martial art.
The first lesson in class is a reminder that this is not just a sport like others around. This is a martial art that can be dangerous so all students are asked not to play around and to find a more peaceful solution to any situation. However, if it is unavoidable, one can defend himself or herself. Control is of utmost importance because as one develops his skill to point where “ikken nisatsu” or to kill with one blow is possible, students know that there are repercussions to their actions and are thus encouraged to be more careful. Avoiding conflict would be the more prudent thing to do.
This martial art is open to children starting an age where they are capable of understanding commands and instructions. They cannot accept children who will just play in the dojo. The goal is to spread the teachings taught by those who have gone before them. If students are too young, they can do other things until they are old enough to learn the skills, the discipline and the control necessary.
They have students who are older than 60 years of age. It is not too late to begin. Karate is not just for fighting and self defense. It is a way of life where one’s everyday is changed for the better. It is a very good source of cardiovascular exercise as well as strength development and maintenance of flexibility.