Continued from the home page:

 

The presenters in these videos make it look easy and simple because they have had decades of experience and physical conditioning. The claim that they are simple (or easy) is relative to each person's level of skill and experience. Just because one person cannot make something work does not negate the technique–one must look in the mirror to find the reasons why they do not work.

 

Applications cannot be complicated because in real combat things are never going to go your way. Events will be unexpected, and you can count on total chaos. Therefore, you cannot think your way through a fight. You must rely on your reflexes which are automatic and instantaneous and which develop as a result of intense, consistent, and realistic training. If your mind is preoccupied in thought, your body will not be able to move in a reflexive way. Therefore, you must train yourself to clear your mind of thought. In Japanese Budo this is called "Mushin" ("without mind"); this is a mental state into which very highly trained martial artists are said to enter during combat.

 

Unfortunately, this is not attained in a year or two of training—it can take decades to achieve. The training must simulate reality as much as possible, pushing the limits of physical injury and holding back at the last possible moment to avoid it. This is the "old school" training method.

 

The primary objective of Karate is to build character and make you a better human being—a person of integrity and humility. There is an old proverb from Karate Master Chotoku Kyan that sums it up perfectly,  "A punch should stay like a treasure in the sleeve. It should not be used indiscriminately."

 

Study hard and focus with utmost intent, but always remember to have a joyful heart during the process. And please take extreme care of your training partner, not just because it's their turn next, but because they are your dojo brother and sister, and you love them like your own family.

 

Hajimemashou,

Angel Lemus