Soryukan Times Issue#75
Mr. and Mrs Carroll, and Ms Judy from Texas visited the Honbu Dojo from October 28th, 2017 to November 2nd, 2017. It was their first time in three years to visit us, and it was the first time for them to visit the Honbu Dojo in Saga prefecture. We were unable to meet on the 28th, but I could finally meet with them on the 29th. Dr. Walt Carroll works as a doctor in an ER, and Ms Judy is a nurse, working at the same hospital.
We trained together on Sunday, the 29th, and had a BBQ outside the Dojo. Many students joined this great event. Walt and Judy were interested in seeing the training at the Honbu Dojo. They received guidance from different teachers, and saw many things you can only see in the Honbu Dojo. Then, after our training, we had a BBQ event outside the Dojo. Despite the fact that the weather report said it would have been a typhoon, the weather was amazingly fine and we were able to have the BBQ outside. Everyone ate a lot of meat. I hope Mr. and Mrs Carroll, and Ms Judy enjoyed this BBQ. As a matter of fact, Texas is famous for BBQ in the U.S., and there are many BBQ restaurants out there. Anyway, I think the BBQ events this year contribute to the intercommunication between Japan and the U.S.
Mr. Walt and Judy Smith also joined the training at Shinei Kindergarten. The two love children. It seems like they had a great experience with teaching them. We had an intensive three days of training during their stay, including Kata, Yakusoku Kumite, KoKyuHo (Breathing method), etc. It goes without saying that sightseeing and pleasant meals are also an important time in order to get to know a little more about Saga. I hope you visit the Honbu Dojo again in the future.
As you may know, the Soryu assignments for each Dan and Kyu are different. This is a very unique training style where you cannot see them in other schools. So you need to think what your assignments are, and do them in training. “Think for yourself, and do it” － This is a basic training method in Soryu Karate.
I would say this voluntary training method is the most difficult training for modern children who are often given what they need to do or have from their parents or teachers. Young children are baffled first by not being told what to do, but they gradually get to join in the training. At first glance, it sounds irresponsible, but it helps them to learn a problem-solving skill by thinking for themselves and acting on their own, instead of being told what you should do. Self improvement by self training - this is what we want.
We have another training in which green belt (4th Kyu) and higher students help junior students. You may think you would be behind by teaching other junior students, rather than spending time to train for your assignments. However, even though the assignments in each Kyu are different, the techniques are connected like a rope, rather than being independent. By teaching junior students can help you learn what you miss and help you improve the techniques by remembering what you missed in training. Also, by teaching other students find you a helpful person, and rediscover yourself what you are proud of.
We often hear bullying problem, but children who train in the Soryu training will never become a bully or join bullying as wrongdoer. Because our students, who learn their faults, strive to overcome their weak points, and try so hard to teach what they can do for their junior students, could never be hard on the weak.
“Voluntary training” and “Green belt holders assistance in training” are a unique training where you never see in other schools. “Considering a person’s feeling” - I can’t help but think of this is what the Soryu originator was looking for in the Karate-Do.
Soryukan Times Issue#78
TanRenHou (Conditioning) - 1
Karate schools have a conditioning workout (Tan Ren Hou) where you develop your physical body in order to change your body into a weapon. In this issue, I will introduce the Soryu style of a conditioning, Tan Ren Ho.
The pictures show “Ken Tate (Knuckle pushups)” where you put your knuckles on the floor, lower the body, and raise the body, just like the regular pushups. This training is great for toning and strengthening knuckles, wrists, and arms. You have to make sure to put the fists of the first and middle fingers on the floor, and pushups around 30 times a day.
TanRenHo (Conditioning) - 2
Yubisaki Udetate (Fingertip pushups) is a pushup training using your fingers. This training method develops the power of your punches by reinforcing your fingertips, and avoids the injury of your fingers when you do knifehand strike and spear hand.
Starting with five fingers, putting on a floor, then decreasing the number of fingers that touches on the floor, like 3 fingers, 2 fingers, and 1 finger.
Once you mastered fingertip pushups with all your fingers, you train the pushups with each set of fingers (5, 4, 3, 2, and 1 finger) for five times. The fingertip pushups makes a lot of pressures on your fingers, so please massage and maintain your fingers after you train.
Soryukan Times Issue#79
KenHoKo (Conditioning) - 3
KenHoKo (Knuckle walking) is a conditioning training where you take a pushup stance, and move forward only with the power of your knuckles and arms. The purpose of KenHoKo is to develop knuckles, wrists, and grips. You can do at home even though you don’t have a training tool such as Makiwara (Padded striking post).
However, if you do this training unthinkingly, you may hurt your knuckles with the skin teared. So you have to harden your knuckles enough before moving to this training such as training Kentate (Knuckle pushups) . You train KenHoKo 15 steps each way for 30 times.