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Antonio G
Antonio G's picture
What is the very best style of karate?

Hello, here are my thoughts about this question : what is the best karate style ? 


Please read, it's not what you think : comments are appreciated :)



Barry O'Sullivan
Barry O'Sullivan's picture

That's a great article that encourages an open mind when training and exploring other styles and arts. Myself, I joined a Shotokan club when I started Karate as it just happened to be the style practiced at the club I joined. I didn't know any different and it could of been any style in the world and I wouldn't of known! These days I use Shotokan as a base kata wise but am very open minded to other arts and styles. I think they all have a lot to offer for self protection when trained in the right context. 

Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

A very good article! Awesome closing paragraph too!

Sensei Funakoshi once said: “There is no style in karate“. If a martial art or karate style truly surpassed all the others, we would know. Just make sure that yours continues to evolve in the right direction, while showing respect and interest for those whose practice is different.


I do think that any attempt to dogmatical freeze a “style” in time is very damaging to the health of that branch of karate.

A living tree changes and grows. It’s the dead one that stays the same.

When it comes to false notions of preserving “purity”, I always thing Ed Parker summed it up best, “Pure karate is when pure fist meets pure face”.

My own article on styles can be found here: https://www.iainabernethy.co.uk/article/styles-are-they-killing-karate

Thanks for sharing!

All the best,


Antonio G
Antonio G's picture

Thank you Barry and Iain for your comments :) 

I really appreciate it. I will take a look at your article

Best regards,


Anf's picture

Excellent article. I think nowadays the student typically expects too much of the teacher. A student will maybe train under the guidance of the teacher maybe 3 or 4 hours per week (sometimes more, sometimes less of course). In that time, they might expect the teacher to guide them safely through warmup and stretching, then teach them martial arts. At the end of the lesson, they go home, and might not train or study until the next class. Yet they'll then pass judgement on the style or the teacher. Most, if not all martial arts teachers I've ever known have dedicated years of training and study to their art, and then some people seem to expect them to convey that knowledge within what amounts to maybe a few hundred hours. I personally see the teacher's role as kind of a homework setter. I go to class, train under my teacher's guidance for a few hours per week, ask questions etc, then between classes I'll practice what I think I've learned, I'll experiment, I'll read, and I'll train the easy stuff like cardio and flexibility so that when I return for the next class, I'm ready for my teacher to check how I'm getting on, point out any errors or possible enhancements etc, and then the whole process repeats. I think using this approach suddenly style becomes irrelevant. It is nothing more than a loose framework upon which my own style will eventually begin to develop.