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By Jikishin Kobudo, Oct 1 2015 11:00AM

Is this the most rare and important literature on Kobudo found any where in the world?


These volumes titled 'Ryukyu Kobujutsu: Jokan-Gekan' written by Inoue Motokatsu in 1972-4 and reprinted in 1983 go into intricate detail concerning the complete system of Kobujutsu and provide the only comprehensive record of a Kobudo school created by a legitimate Headmaster in existence.


The scale of the contents is staggering, all of the Kata and a great deal of bunkai is shown here, including historical descriptions of the weapons and of the people who inspired and contributed to the development of Kobujutsu in the world as we know it.


Thank you to Don Warrener for sending this book to us here at Jikishin Kobudo. It will take pride of place amongst our collection. We are only too aware that all Okinawa Kobudo and Ryukyu Kobujutsu styles have a common history, use common weapons, many of the same kata, and largely derive from the same Masters. Irrespective of badge or school, we are as brothers and sisters descendants and custodians in the same family.


Contents:


Shushi no Kon Sho, Shushi no Kon Dai, Sakugawa no Kon Sho, Sakugawa no Kon Dai, Soeishi no Kon Sho, Sueyoshi no Kon, Tsukenshitahaku no Sai, Hamahiga no Sai, Chatanyara no Sai, Jigen no, Sai, Hamahiga no Tonfa, Yarasho no Tonfa, Kanegawa no Nichougama Dai, Kanegawa no Timbei, Testuko no Kata, Nunchaku Sho no Kata, Surushin (Nage), Soeishi no Kon Dai, Urasoe no Kon, Sesoku no Kon, Hakuson no Kon Dai, Raigo no Kon, Tsukensunakake no Kon, Yakaa no Sai, Hakutagawa no Sai, Tawada no Sai, Nunchaku Dai no Kata, Toyama no Nichougama, Kanegawa no Nichougama Sho, Surushin (Tan), Yonegawa no Kon, Chinenshichanaka no Kon, Tsuken Bo,

Choun no Kon, Chatanyara no Kon, Hakuson no Kon Sho, Shushi no Kon Koshiki, Sakugawa no Kon Chu, Kojo no Sai, Kyushakubo no Kata, Sanshakubo no Kata, Sansokan no Kata

By Jikishin Kobudo, Jul 18 2014 11:00AM

Kobudo training can be divided into three component parts


1) Kata

2) Kumi Waza

3) Hojo Undo


Each of these component parts informs the direction of practice of the others.


Kata: Through the practice of Kata, we should envisage the nature of real combat. Good Kata practice necessitates the visualisation of attackers and in doing so we can perceive our body in relation to those of our opponents. We can begin to understand how sequences of movements may be put together in different directions against multiple attacks. The spirit or nature of each Kata also teaches us lessons on how to prepare our mind for different offensive or defensive modes of combat. If we are uncertain about the effectiveness of a given technique we can test them in Kumi Waza. If we are unsure about the speed and accuracy of the technique we can practice Hojo Undo.


Kumi Waza: Here we will practice single techniques or sequences with partners or small groups. This may often require weapon contact and though this must be done with the highest degree of safety, it will reveal many elements of our techniques and their efficacy. Kumi Waza is a fantastic opportunity to learn about distance and how weapons respond. It is also the perfect time to develop light footwork and an awareness of mind. We would never practice Kumi Waza at full speed or with full power, since it is too dangerous and often counterproductive. To practice combination full speed and full power we can use our Hojo Undo. To inspire the development of emerging 'bunkai' techniques and combinations we can use our 'Kata'.


Hojo Undo: This is the opportunity to improve our physical condition and weapon handling by the repetition of techniques in formal rows in the Dojo. The same block, strike or combination may be repeated many times in order to develop speed, strength, accuracy or balance. Through Hojo Undo we get the opportunity to fine tune a technique for a specific purpose. We can visualise a broad range of these techniques in application through the practice of Kata. We can learn about how techniques must adapt for different opponents through the practice of Kumi Waza.


All of these methods of training help to prepare the Kobudo student for effective use of the weapons. None is more important than the others, none should be favoured and none neglected.


By Jikishin Kobudo, May 6 2014 11:00AM

'Shushi No Kun' Kata is one of the most practised staff forms in Okinawa. The origins of the kata are from China, bu it is uncertain about the exact date or manner of how the kata first arrived on the island.


'Shu Shi' in Japanese is pronounced Zhou Sher in Chinese and is the name of the person who developed this kata. The most usual translation of this name into English would be 'Mr.Chow'.


The 'Staff of Mr.Chow' is practised primarily utilising go-no-sen techniques, in which the opponent is first parried or blocked before counter-striking. Shushi No Kun for this reason is considered a beginner's kata, despite being a relatively complex sequence to learn.


Amongst many other weapons inside his Kodokan dojo, Matayoshi Shimpo Sensei had an example of 'The Guan Dao', so named because it was the preferred weapon of the most famous Chinese General Guan Yu, and suggested to be the most significant and influential weapon of Chinese martial arts. Despite living almost 2000 years ago, Guan Yu is worshipped by martial artists and law enforcers to this day in China as the embodiment of martial spirit.


When Sushi No Kun, it becomes clear that the movements of the kata are well suited to this weapon, with the majority of techniques being executed with the bladed end. It is well established that practise with the staff allows the development of skill with all other pole weapons. Though we will never know the full story of Mr.Chow, we can conject with caution, about the possible applications of his kata.



By Jikishin Kobudo, Mar 7 2014 12:00PM

The use of sound as a weapon in battle around the world and throughout history is well observed. Battle cries in particular have been used for millennia to unite the spirit of soliders and strke fear into enemies. In Kobudo training the 'Kiai' is used to focus the mind on the purpose of a given exercise or technique.


'Kiai' is comprised of two characters - 'Ki' which can be translated to mean spirit, mood or energy, and 'Ai' which is specifically a contraction of the verb 'Awasu' meaning to unite, and in this context can be used to denote harmony. The ultimate purpose of a Kiai is to ensure the unity of a delivered physical technique with the spirit or the mind of the fighter. For many Okinawans, a failure to understand the purpose of Kiai indicates a failure to understand the purpose of martial arts.


The Kiai is an expression of spirit that goes far beyond the use of words and can be found in all three stages of combat.


At the start of combat that Kiai may be used


- As a preparation for the soul when entering a guard

- To stimulate the release of adrenaline

- As a communication of intent to the opponent


During combat the Kiai may be used


- To desensitise the opponent

- To scare the opponent

- To harmonise the internal power of the body and mind


At the end of combat the Kiai may be used


- As a release of the soul from a battle mindset

- As an expression of lament following the delivery of a fatal technique

- As a warning to other attackers


If 'Kata' can be described as an imaginary fight, then the use of Kiai within these Kata becomes very important.Whilst performing Kata that contain multiple Kiai points, it is important to consider the purpose and application of each one.

By Jikishin Kobudo, Nov 1 2013 12:00PM

The fall of a Temple and the rise of secular martial arts


Large organised groups of martial artists were considered a threat to the governing elite of the Qing dynasty (1644 – 1912), this meant that the Shaolin were heavily scrutinised. As such, due to the political insecurity of the Qing and after being identified as a possible source of insurrection, the Southern Temple was regrettably destroyed. From that day forth, fighting traditions in Southern China were often practised in secret and in small groups for fear of persecution. As a result the practice of martial arts became secularised.


The convergance and celebration of styles and approaches that reputedly took place within Shaolin had ended and as the centuries passed, martial artists in isolation began to diverge in techniques and outlooks. This can partly explain why today, we see many different martial arts styles, most of which claim to have been developed from Shaolin traditions. These styles can often appear quite different in application and ethos. Could they really share the same root?


The similarities between Sanchin kata from Karate and Sil Lum Tao from southern Chinese Kung Fu are clear to even an untrained eye, as are the locking and throwing techniques of Chin Na and Jiu Jitsu. In weapons practice, many of the Okinawan kata (particularly for the staff) are named after Chinese experts and we can see the same weapons used in Hung Gar Kung Fu can be found in Kobudo. The key principles of strong stances, considered breathing and body conditioning form the foundation of most martial arts and it is perhaps through these that we are best able to see the true legacy of the Shaolin.



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