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The Itinerary of a Typical Karate Training Session



  1. Warm-up


Karate training always begins with a series of warm-up exercises.

These exercises are conducted in order to:


  • Minimize the risk of injury 

  • Increase one’s metabolic rate

  • Increase the speed and strength of muscular contractions

  • Increase the rate at which oxygen is delivered to and utilized by one’s muscles

  • Reduces nervous tension, thereby increasing one’s physical and mental speed, strength, coordination, efficiency and endurance


  1.  Kihon – (Basics)


Tsuki (punching), Uchi (striking), Geri (kicking), and Uke (blocking) are the fundamental Karate techniques. Coupled with proper stance, posture, timing and distance, they form the basis of the martial art. Students can easily learn to perform these basic movements in a little more than two months, but perfection in their performance will take years of practice. Therefore, students must practice regularly and employ maximum concentration and effort in the performance of each movement.


  1.  Kata – (Form exercises)


This is a series of techniques performed by yourself or in a group, to defend or counterattack against imaginary opponent(s) in various situations and in proper sequence.  Kata is not only to develop fighting technique but also fighting spirit. In Kata, the total performance must be visualized, the imaginary opponents must be made real and each technique carried out with an intensity and commitment that demonstrates one hundred percent effort. You need to understand the applications of each technique that have been polished after your continuous physical and mental practices.


4. Kumite – (Sparring)


1. Kihon Ippon Kumite (Basic one-step point sparring system)


 Involves the use of basic techniques in a controlled, structured manner. One attack only – block, then reverse punch.


2. Jiyu Ippon Kumite (Semi-free sparring)


Involves the study of offensive and defensive techniques, training in body movements and learning Maai (distancing) timing.


3. Jiyu Kumite (Free sparring)


a)    Shiai Kumite (Tournament style sparring) Use techniques freely but must maintain complete control in order to prevent unnecessary injury to others under tournament rules.

b)    Jissen Kumite (Free sparring) Use techniques freely including grabbing and throwing opponent.



Note: Each Sensei within Gima-ha has a different level of expertise within Kata and Kumite, two of the main components that comprise a typical training session. Thus, more training may be dedicated to one or the other, depending on your Sensei. Since this is the case, it is a good idea to attend Summer Camp of each year, as well as attending Saturday classes in White Rock (if possible) to train with different Sensei’s. This additional training will facilitate your development as a karate practitioner.



5. Cool-down The training concludes with a series of cool-down exercises, which help to:

  • facilitate the removal of lactic acid from working muscles

  • allow heart rate, oxygen, and temperature to gradually return to rest levels

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