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Traditional Things I Do NOT Do and Why

In this video I discuss three “traditional” things we don’t do, and I explain why we don’t do them. In my dojo we have long since stopped:

1) Using Japanese titles i.e. “Sensei”, etc.

2) Employing formal Japanese etiquette (beyond a simple bow).

3) Lining up by rank when training kihon, etc.

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Naihanchi / Tekki Shodan Partner and Pad Drill

In this video we look at a Naihanchi / Tekki based partner drill and pad drill. The drill consists of the kata methods being rapidly applied in a way that seeks to maintain dominance and ultimately facilitate escape (self-protection context).

While all the methods in the drill are found in the kata, the order is not the same. It’s vitally important to understand that the learning order (i.e. the sequence of the solo kata) is not the mandatory application order. In application, we use whatever method is relevant at that moment: the situation dictates, not the solo kata.

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Supplementary Fitness Training for Martial Arts: Three Key Considerations

In this video we discuss supplementary training from the martial arts. In particular, we cover the three key considerations – Individual Need, Available Time, Personal Enjoyment – that we all need to take into account when formulating effective and enjoyable training programs.  I hope you find the video interesting and useful.

All the best,


PS The YouTube link can be found HERE

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Kata and Bunkai Explained (video)

In this video I cover some of the key aspects of my approach to kata and bunkai. While it’s obviously not possible to cover all aspects in a presentation such as this, I nevertheless hope that this general overview is of some value. Topics covered include:

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Which knuckles should we hit with? Front 2 or back 3?

A short video on whether it is better to hit with the front two knuckles or the back three. NOTE: To illustrate some general points I hold my own fist against the side of my skull when talking (rest of body not in shot and holding my fist against my jaw made talking awkward); this in NO WAY is suggesting that part of the head is a desirable target (although it could be accidentally hit in the chaos of combat). The video also briefly discusses the merits of closed-hand striking vs open-hand striking. I hope you find my take on these issues interesting.

All the best,


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Logical Fallacies and the Martial Arts (video)

In this video I discuss some of the widespread logical fallacies that we see during discussions and debates within the traditional martial arts community. Good quality debate is one of the tools we can use to rid ourselves of bad ideas and to ensure good ideas are fully realised. However, poor quality debate – based on dogma, emotion and the logical fallacies discussed – is largely pointless. We need a lot more of the former, and far less of the latter, if traditional martial arts are to thrive and grow.

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What is the BEST Martial Art?

Discussions and debates about which is the best martial art are commonplace. However, which martial art is “best” will ultimately be determined by the specified goals of the individual practitioner. In this video we discuss some of the key considerations in determining which is the most suitable martial art for any given practitioner. Topics discussed include:


Sport Pressure

Testing Fitness, Health and Longevity

Traditional or Modern

Training Environment

Cultural Interest

Personal Enjoyment

And More!

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Another Motobu Inspired Pad Drill

In this video we look at a pad drill inspired by the two-person drills of Choki Motobu (1870–1944). Those familiar with his drills will recognise which elements we are making use of. Additionally, we can also see Motobu’s expressed combative concepts in play i.e. “Always strike from where your hand is in that moment”, “Blocking with one hand a striking with the other is not true martial arts”, etc.

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Kururunfa Bunkai: Shoulder-Lock Takedown

This short video looks at a shoulder-lock takedown from Kururunfa kata. There are number of suggested bunkai for this sequence. My critique of the more widespread ones is that some ignore the back hand, and most ignore the angle at which the kata shows the sequence. The angle at which the sequence is performed is key because it tells us that we have moved to the side of the enemy:

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More on the TRUE role of Hiki-Te (hand on the hip)

“When pulling a hand to the hip, it should be considered to have some part of the opponent in its grip. e.g. an arm, wrist or even head.” - Seikichi Toguchi

“The meaning of the hiki-te is to grab the enemy’s arm and twist and pull as much as possible in order to break the enemy’s posture” – Gichin Funakoshi

The original video can be found here:

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