Many Karate Ka speak of Kihon, Kata and Kumite being the three most equally important parts of Karate. Now even though this is a valid breakdown within the training realms of many, it should also be accepted that this is more of a modern phenomenon or approach to Karate training. As in truth there are many areas of Karate that we should be focusing on that don’t really fall into either of these three categories. Personally, I also feel that when Karate Ka speak of the Karate triangle as a basis for practice they would be much wiser breaking things down to the point of not only speaking on defining areas, but then studying to achieve a deeper understanding, then most importantly, practising until one has the physical ability to match ones wisdom.
There are many terms that are thrown around lightly by Karate Ka, Chin Kuchi – Tenshin – Iri Kumi – Atefa to name just a few… However, if truth be known it is very scarce for even many of the supposed leading names or Sensei around to understand all of these concepts deeply, or if they happen to, fewer still can demonstrate them well. This is where I have full respect not only for people’s honesty of not knowing everything about Karate, which none of us do. But for those that have done their research on defining areas, then they have put the time and effort in inside the Dojo to back up their words, thus completing the Karate Triangle. There are most certainly many Karate teachers who speak and write on differing areas or subjects relating to Karate, but in truth they have little understanding of the theories presented, which normally shows when it comes to defining things physically.
Here is a way of looking at studying Karate in three stages:
Firstly, you need to hear of something or learn about an aspect of Karate.
Secondly, you need to do your research thoroughly and receive quality guidance in this area. Just be careful who you believe and listen to here!!
Thirdly, you need to practise, practise, and practise some more in the Dojo….
Here is a brief analogy… When we are ill, or we have an injury, most people will suddenly turn into a qualified physician or doctor. However, even though deep down one normally has little or no training in medicine they are more than happy to offer us advice!? Anyway… Firstly, we visit the Doctor or the Pharmacist who will try and diagnose our condition or problem (We here of something). Secondly, through their guidance and deep understanding of the human body they will do their best to heal us by way of therapy and medicine, or if not stabilize things for us (We receive guidance in better understanding things). Yes, both of these phases are based off study and extensive research with one being extremely knowledgeable in the subject area. Thirdly, this is when things may require one to have surgery. (Things need to become physical) This is where the surgeon or consultant requires even a different level of skills and understanding altogether, whereby their ability to perform or achieve a successful/satisfactory outcome will only be achieved through vast amounts of hands on practical experience over many years.