Where Karate Originated and Key Benefits? A Quick Summary

Posted By Ranjay On May 24, 2020

Karate is the traditional discipline of self-protection without weapons; it literally means "the way of empty hands". 

Traditional karate uses mental concentration and rigorous training to develop physical skills such as speed, strength, and agility. 

Training the spirit and body together leads to multiple benefits, unlike the routine exercise routines seen in most gyms.

Physical fitness and general well-being: Karate practice improves the flexibility, strength, coordination and endurance of the practitioner. 

Karate punches, thrusts, kicks, locks, sweeps and throws exercise the whole body in an explosive and active way.

Stress Relief: In addition to the stress-reducing benefits of any physical exercise, karate also improves regularity and awareness of mental attitudes that can induce tension.

Self-confidence: Although all physical exercises improve feelings of well-being, Classic Karate places a particular emphasis on building personality and focuses on increasing security, awareness and persistence through repetitive physical and mental exercises. .

Self Protection: Traditional Karate is the best martial art for self protection as it revolves around genuine defense skills rather than sport-oriented methods that are impractical and ineffective in real combat situations.

Physical benefits include: Coordination of cardiovascular exercise Flexibility Pragmatic self-protection techniques Stress reduction Aerobic and anaerobic exercise Growing faster Reflexes Plyometric explosivity

The mental benefits include: discipline, persistence, humility, responsibility, self-esteem, security, conscience and insight.

What is karate? "Real karate is this: that in day to day life one's spirit and body are conditioned and trained in a spirit of humility, and that in decisive times, one is fully committed to the cause of justice." –

Gichin Funakoshi

Karate can also be identified as a martial art or combat method, which requires a combination of techniques, including blocking, hitting, escaping, throwing, and joint manipulations. Karate training is divided into three aspects: kihon (basic concepts), kata (forms) and kumite (combat).

The word karate is a blend of two Japanese characters: kara, which signifies empty, and te, which signifies hand; Thus, karate decipher to "empty hand." Adding the suffix "-do" (sounded "doe"), which means "form," meaning karate-do, connotes karate as a complete way of life that goes far beyond self-protection applications. 

In traditional karate-do, we always keep in mind that the true adversary is oneself.

Shotokan establisher Gichin Funakoshi has said that "spirit and know-how become one in real karate." 

We strive to make our physical techniques refine the reflexes of our mind's intention, and improve the concentration of our mind by realizing the essence of physical techniques. By fine-tuning our karate process, we are fine-tuning our individual mind or our individual mental capacity. 

For instance, eradicating feeble and doubtful movements in our karate aids to purge weakness and indecision in our minds, and vice versa.

It is in this sense that karate becomes a way of life, since we strive to be very strong but cheerful and respectful people of the law. 

As Tsutomu Ohshima, Lead Master or Shihan of Shotokan Karate of America, has said: "We have to be strong enough to convey our true spirit to any adversary, anytime, in any condition. We have to be calm enough to behave ourselves with humility"

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