Kyokushin Karate

Discussion in 'Karate' started by TKDFromDMV_Student, Mar 25, 2017.

  1. TKDFromDMV_Student

    TKDFromDMV_Student Yellow Belt

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    Hey guys, I have been doing some research on Martial Arts on the internet and stumbled on Kyokushin Karate. I'm interested in knowing more about it. So to anyone reading this, I want to know: 1) If You are a Kyokushin student, 2) How it differs from other styles of Karate, 3) What you love about it, 4) What are some of its strengths and weaknesses?
     
  2. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    I haven't trained actual Kyokushin, but my former style and current style came from it.

    Kyokushin is a bare knuckle style of karate. When they spar, it's typically with only a cup and mouthpiece for protection. More schools are using shin pads. Some now start with protective gear and it's worn less and less as the student progresses in rank and ability.

    Kyokushin's founder, Mas Oyama, trained under Gichen Funakoshi (founder of Shotokan) and his son, and under Gogen Yamaguchi (Goju-Kai). If you look at a Kyokushin kata list, you'll see kata from both schools as requirements. So in essence, Kyokushin is a blend of Shotokan and Goju.

    Strengths -
    Bare knuckle, so there's not much left to the imagination as to what works and what doesn't.
    You learn very quickly that you're not made of glass and being hit won't immediately kill you.
    Very fast paced/high pressure sparring.
    Sparring is continuous, and point-fighting isn't done, except at the beginner levels if at all.

    Weaknesses -
    Some schools can get too competition based, thereby not training to head punch and defend it. Some will put on boxing gloves and head gear and punch to the head.
    Ground fighting, standing grappling, etc. isn't common. Some very high ranking people left Kyokushin because of the lack of head punching and grappling and started their own styles.
    Bare knuckle takes a toll on your body. Being 40, I don't recover like I did in my 20s. When I restarted, I didn't go to the local Kyokushin school because I knew I wouldn't stay forever; I'm not getting any younger.

    Kyokushin has split quite a bit since Oyama's death in '94. A lot of the dust has settled, but there's quite a few different organizations using the Kyokushin name. IKO1, IKO2, etc; IKU; IKF, and on and on. So there's a bit of politics and disagreement between factions. Some do things differently, but there's far more similarities than differences. For someone just starting out, you wouldn't know there were any most of the time.

    My original style was basically re-named Kyokushin. I loved it. I trained from 18-25 years old. It was the same mentality from when I wrestled - keep going forward, don't give up, and training physical and mental toughness.

    Different Kyokushin schools and organizations train a bit differently. One thing I can tell you is that there's very, very little chance of a Kyokushin dojo being a McDojo. The only way to find out if the style and school are right for you is to visit. Most places have a free trial period; take advantage of it.
     
  3. Malos1979

    Malos1979 Green Belt

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    I think Kyokushin is an awesome style.

    I never practiced it myself. A friend of mine practices Ashihara karate, which comes from a student of Mas Oyama and is highly practical.
     
  4. KabutoKouji

    KabutoKouji Green Belt

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    I never practiced Kyokushin but for some reason I end up watching a lot of vids about it and find Mas Oyama very interesting. I heard about him when I practiced ITF Tae Kwon Do. It's interesting that there's no Japanese flag in the dojo - I presume as Mas Oyama was Korean.
     
  5. KabutoKouji

    KabutoKouji Green Belt

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    I never practiced Kyokushin but for some reason I end up watching a lot of vids about it and find Mas Oyama very interesting. I heard about him when I practiced ITF Tae Kwon Do. It's interesting that there's no Japanese flag in the dojo in your video - I presume as Mas Oyama was Korean.
     
  6. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    Welcome to the forum, liquidcadmus. Very good post, however I have one small correction...

    IKO1 (Matsui) has added weight classes...

    2013 The 5th World Weight Category Karate Championships Report | News Release | IKO Kyokushinkaikan

    They still have the standard open tournaments without them, but they now run "Weight category" tournaments as well. Other IKOs may have added them too, but I'm not sure if any actually have nor which ones have.
     
  7. KabutoKouji

    KabutoKouji Green Belt

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    yeah I watched an NHK documentary recently on his life and they even talked about his 'youth' and 'growing up' with photos of him when he was young, and still never mentioned Korea or him being Korean o_O
     
  8. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

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    I haven't kept up with what all the different IKOs are doing, but IKO1 has the World Weight Category tournament and the World Open tournament. I'm pretty sure the Open tournament is the one everyone pays far more attention to.

    It's really awful what's gone on with Kyokushin since Sosai's death. But with that many truly excellent senior ranked karateka, even if there was zero controversy surrounding his last will and testament, there would eventually be a decent amount of splintering no matter what.
     
  9. Slycer

    Slycer White Belt

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