Should I train Kobudo all by myself?

Discussion in 'Karate' started by Syed01, Jun 25, 2017.

  1. Syed01

    Syed01 Yellow Belt

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2017
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    8
    I am a shotokan karateka (Brown Kyu 2). When I see kobudo movements a lot of kata looks similar to karate kata. So I thought trying Kobudo with Bo or Nunchaku might help me to learn something more. Unfortunately Kobudo isn't taught in our dojo or near anywhere in other dojo, the best way to start is just by coping movements from books or youtube videos. Is it worth a try to do something without any physical instruction? Your opinions are humbly welcomed.
     
  2. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

    • Supporting Member
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Messages:
    15,451
    Likes Received:
    4,352
    Trophy Points:
    448
    Location:
    Hendersonville, NC
    If you're just using it to have a different way to work on he movements, go for it. If you want to develop skill with the weapon, find a competent instructor to get you started, then revisit once a month or so to get corrections on what you've practiced.
     
  3. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2014
    Messages:
    15,370
    Likes Received:
    3,373
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Yeah. Go for it. I don't think you would get much fighting application from an instructor anyway.

    I mean who would he have nun chuck fought ever?
     
  4. CB Jones

    CB Jones Senior Master

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2017
    Messages:
    2,574
    Likes Received:
    1,022
    Trophy Points:
    253
    Location:
    Saline
    Just a suggestion, check out Fumio Demura books on weapons for some reference material and instructions.
     
  5. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Messages:
    3,434
    Likes Received:
    1,880
    Trophy Points:
    353
    Location:
    In the dojo
    If you have no one to teach you and you're not looking to become the highest level practitioner or compete, the best option I can think of is Saiko-Shihan Mikio Nishiuchi. Authentic Okinawan kobudo, and his videos are pretty high quality.

    Looking into his stuff to post a video or two, and I can't find what I was looking for. And his website doesn't have the videos I had in mind. He may have updated/changed them. Century MA has the videos I've seen for sale for about $15 a piece...

    Century Nishiuchi's Traditional Okinawan Kobudo Weaponry Series Volume 1 | Media | Century Martial Arts

    My former instructor bought a few, practiced them, met up with an instructor periodically, and began teaching it. I loved it. Here's the organization...

    About Us

    Just an idea.
     
  6. Flying Crane

    Flying Crane Sr. Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Messages:
    10,832
    Likes Received:
    1,557
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    San Francisco
    I do not recommend trying to learn by book or video or internet as the primary or only source of instruction. You will only learn shallow mimickry, your technique will be filled with error and problems and misunderstandings, and you will not really understand it. Find a good teacher with whom you can train regularly, face-to-face. If one is not available to you, then shelve the idea until later, when you can find a good instructor.
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
    • Like Like x 2
  7. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2016
    Messages:
    3,003
    Likes Received:
    1,055
    Trophy Points:
    253
    You can if want but I doubt you'll get very good learning without an instructor
     
  8. MI_martialist

    MI_martialist Brown Belt

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2016
    Messages:
    401
    Likes Received:
    42
    Trophy Points:
    28
    I will start by saying that kobudo to refer to non-warrior class weaponry really is a misnomer. Ko - before. Budo - modern martial arts.

    Anyways...put a weapon in your hand and perform your kata. Put weapons in both hands and perform your kata...

    But, if you want to really understand and be able to use whatever weapon it is...you must learn fighting applications, looking at the similarities before the differences.
     
  9. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    14,095
    Likes Received:
    2,127
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Michigan
    I don't often say this, but as an advanced student, you should be able to extract some value in this way. I suggest Bo and Sai as complementary to open hand techniques. Jointed weapons are fine, but generate power differently.

    With kobudo, stance, transition, and extending power are key. Done with careful attention, they can inform your empty hand techniques.

    Even without formal instructions, you can develop familiarity with handling the weapons and develop some proficiency until you can get in-person training. For example, learning how to properly hold Sai, how to open and close them, the various blocks and strikes. You can develop a feel for them in your hands just by carrying them as you do empty hand kata.
     
  10. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2014
    Messages:
    15,370
    Likes Received:
    3,373
    Trophy Points:
    308
  11. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Messages:
    3,434
    Likes Received:
    1,880
    Trophy Points:
    353
    Location:
    In the dojo
    As I was saying before, my previous sensei re-learned weapons from that system, in a way.

    He was a 4th dan when he broke away from his previous organization. He was quite good with the weapons we were doing, but he hated the curriculum. He came across one of the videos (VHS at the time) and started practicing that stuff alone and using a few of us as guinnea pigs. He found a guy in the system about 3 hours away, and started traveling every month or so to work with him. It worked out pretty well.

    I still keep in touch with my former sensei, and he's still at it with that curriculum and training with the other guy periodically.

    The system itself is solid. I don't know how well implemented the online version is or what their standards are. But t if you have a good sense of the weapons and weapons in general, it can work out quite well. If you've never been taught anything about a bo, I have no idea if it'll make someone competent or not.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  12. Bill Mattocks

    Bill Mattocks Sr. Grandmaster

    • Martial Talk Alumni
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2009
    Messages:
    14,095
    Likes Received:
    2,127
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    Michigan
    I have discovered in the last few years that kobudo training is really picking up. What used to be a sideline to traditional Okinawan and Japanese karate styles now seems to be appearing more often as a separate ryu of its own.

    The karate style I train in has several weapons katas as part of the overall system, and I'm still engaged in learning them. Primarily bo, sai, and tuifa (tonfa). However, my sensei has affiliated our dojo with a weapons style that is under active development, which has multiple weapons and several dozen katas for them. It's a lot to learn. Enjoyable, but there is so much there. Personally, I really like bo and sai kata. I find they inform and assist me with my empty-hand karate.
     
    • Funny Funny x 1
  13. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2014
    Messages:
    15,370
    Likes Received:
    3,373
    Trophy Points:
    308
    You mostly wouldn't know if you were competent anyway. Even if you trained with a legit guy. Has he had experience in weapon fighting?

    You would need to go out and bang some dudes in the head with the thing.
     
  14. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Messages:
    3,434
    Likes Received:
    1,880
    Trophy Points:
    353
    Location:
    In the dojo
    Or spar with them, which we did (only a select few of us after hours and pretty well padded up).

    That system has a lot of controlled sparring drills. They teach some basics of handling the weapon, a kata, then two person drills based on those movements. We'd also hit heavy bags and other stuff.

    What I got most out of weapons training was movement. It teaches different ways to move and has a sense of urgency to it.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  15. JR 137

    JR 137 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    Messages:
    3,434
    Likes Received:
    1,880
    Trophy Points:
    353
    Location:
    In the dojo
    My former sensei teaches weapons separately from karate. It's basically two different systems, and students can choose one or the other, or both.

    My current organization has weapons in the karate syllabus. It starts at shodan, and is required for advancement/promotion thereafter, along with empty hand stuff (empty hand stuff is the overwhelming majority of the syllabus).

    Honestly, I like them separate. Some people love weapons, some hate them. It just seems not deep enough if it's part of a whole rather than its own separate entity. I liked the 1 hour weapons class twice a week after the regular classes much better. When it was part of the overall system in my previous organization (before my CI broke away and revamped the curriculum), it seemed more like an afterthought. Or it was "we haven't done this enough lately" kind of thing.
     
    • Like Like x 3
  16. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

    • Supporting Member
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Messages:
    15,451
    Likes Received:
    4,352
    Trophy Points:
    448
    Location:
    Hendersonville, NC
    So now, even competition and heavy sparring won't validate?
     
  17. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2014
    Messages:
    15,370
    Likes Received:
    3,373
    Trophy Points:
    308
    Sure it would.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  18. donald1

    donald1 Senior Master

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2013
    Messages:
    3,121
    Likes Received:
    519
    Trophy Points:
    213
    Personally i prefer the bo over nunchaku, more distance. But thats up to you what you prefer. I wouldnt recommend trying something new alone. But good like training none the less.

    Ps. Be careful with those nunchaku! Hitting funny bones with those things is only funny when other people do it
     
  19. kempodisciple

    kempodisciple Senior Master

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2012
    Messages:
    3,516
    Likes Received:
    821
    Trophy Points:
    263
    Location:
    New York
    I think he's actually stating competition and heavy sparring are what would validate it here. I'm going to disagree though.

    It would validate it to an extent, basically tell you "I'm better with this than the average joe", which is fine if that's what you want. But if the people you are training with don't know what they're doing and the person teaching you doesn't know what you're doing, having the 20 of you fight each other will only help so much. If you keep winning, you have no knowledge of whether you are good with that weapon, or if you're just better than 19 other people who also suck with the weapon.

    It's similar to those schools that only fight in-house. They may very well have a lot of experience fighting, but than they go to compete elsewhere, and discover that their skills don't transfer outside of their particular dojo. What sucks is that for a lot of these weapons, there aren't enough people fighting with them (you have the dog brothers but thats about it AFAIK) so that you're almost forced to practice with the people you train with.
     
  20. gpseymour

    gpseymour Sr. Grandmaster

    • Supporting Member
    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2012
    Messages:
    15,451
    Likes Received:
    4,352
    Trophy Points:
    448
    Location:
    Hendersonville, NC
    Training for defensive use, being abke to take 19 other people who also train is probably sufficient.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1

Share This Page

Search tags for this page

fastest way to learn kobudo