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What is karate and where is it from? - In More Detail
Which style of karate is Kin Shin Kai?
What do the names mean?
Why is the serious study of Karate generally called "Karate Do"?


Karate is said to be from JAPAN but it has only been practiced there since the 1920's. What the Japanese did was to systematise and modify, for their own purposes, the original skills and methods taught to them by the OKINAWANS (natives of an island near Japan, now part of Japan) who had apparently developed three different streams of Karate by the early 1900's.

The Okinawans themselves borrowed a lot from the CHINESE, particularly from the south of China.

The Chinese are said to have been taught self defence around 600 AD by a Zen Buddhist monk from INDIA, the Bodidharma.

So Karate is fairly new but has roots going back thousands of years.
All these roots are part of the tradition of "Traditional Karate"

KARATE can be used in many ways but traditionally is a system of self defence based on using many parts of the body to avoid or block an attack or grab, to escape from being grabbed or in the worst case, having the mental and physical toughness to defend oneself even after being hit. The follow-ups, if necessary, are basically used to ensure an attacker is no longer a threat. Generally this is done with various tools of impact or restraint.

It needs to be emphasized that the ethical Karate approach which we stress is to avoid or walk away from trouble as soon as it is safely possible to do so and to use the minimum force necessary to protect ourselves. The best and highest form of self defence in Karate is to protect ourselves with our mind, and without any physical exchange taking place. This is a skill which is also valuable in our everyday lives.

Physically, Karate practitioners may use techniques which include strikes, seizes, blocks, grappling, throws, sweeps, take downs, joint locks, restraints, immobilisations and strangles.