Why do some karateka sensei wear hakima?

Discussion in 'Japanese Martial Arts - General' started by TSDTexan, Sep 19, 2015.

  1. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    19-1024x688.jpg
     
  2. Buka

    Buka Grandmaster

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    Looks cool, maybe. Probably comfortable, too.
     
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  3. Danny T

    Danny T Senior Master

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    Personal preference... I suggest asking the ones who do wear them. All else is probably conjecture.
    Is the spelling hakima or hakama?
     
  4. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    Its with an a not an I. My phone is a ditz on auto correct
     
  5. donald1

    donald1 Senior Master

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    Ivs never met any karate instructors who wear them could it possibly based on their style of karate?
     
  6. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    you can see Shotokan's founder (Funakoshi sensei), Mabuni Kenwa sensei (Shito-ryu founder), Tani sensei (Shukokai founder) and Dr Greg Story sensei (a key shito-ryu senior in Australia in the 1980s who has lived most of his life in Japan).
    hakama.jpg Mabuni setaed  funakoshi miyagi.jpg Greg Story kata demo seienchin 1986.jpg Greg and ason Aust Dojo 80s.jpg

    Here are other old Okinaiwa "Te" Masters in Hakama
    ChokiMotobu.jpg
    20150727_050406000_iOS-e1439394760549-300x240.png

    Here is Japanese KarateKa Gogen Yamaguchi founder of GoJu Kai
    Saiko_Shihan.jpg

    So far my research has led me to knowledge that black gi pants is a direct nod to the previous use of hakama within almost all the karate traditions that use white Gi Jackets and Black Gi pants.

    The hakama used to be required attire of many Japanese and Okinaiwan fighting arts. And all samurai were required to wear it.

    In honor of poorer martial arts students it was moved to a dan level requirement. The rationale being you must still wear it but we will give you more time to acquire one.

    Soon only dan ranks were wearing it. Some moved it to even higher status then 1 dan. Some traditions moved it above 5th.

    Eventually it became seemingly inappropriate for Kyu (non dan ranked) to wear hakama within pretty much any karate tradition and it became an exclusive of dan ranks.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2015
  7. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    How is "hakima" going to come up as autocorrect…? It's a correction to… what? Hmm…

    More honestly, I'd ask about the term "karateka sensei"… it's either one or the other, really. Karateka is a karate practitioner… karate sensei is a karate instructor… it just doubles up on descriptors to have both, and that just doesn't work…

    So… to sum up, your question is why Japanese and Okinawan martial artists dress in Japanese clothing?

    Except that black gi pants are fairly rare as well… in fact, outside of TKD, other Korean forms, and modern, eclectic Western variants, you basically don't see it at all… particularly in Japanese and Okinawan systems… so… huh?

    Er… no. Hakama were, simply, pants. That's it. Japanese pants. They were originally developed as a form of chaps for riding horses… but became simply standard, everyday, common wear. The fancier, and more expensive, were largely restricted to the upper classes, but that's more an economic reality rather than anything to do with "all samurai were required to wear (them)"… I hardly know where to start with that.

    It's commonly taken within sword arts that it's rather improper (and rude) to demonstrate ken methods without hakama… but many ryu-ha don't necessarily practice in them… instead, wearing samue, or a "regular" gi… or even just normal street clothes (including business suits and jeans, depending on the person and the circumstances). But there is no historical basis of any kind of "required attire" outside of any single system/organisation applying their own uniform ideals and particular approach.

    No, not really. There is a story within Aikido that Ueshiba originally wanted all students to wear hakama (he came up with a number of reasons, including attributing the seven virtues of bushido [which, historically, didn't actually exist either] to the seven pleats of the hakama, as well as being a symbolic link back to the warriors of old), but during WWII there were a number of shortages, one of which was cloth… and, as hakama take a fair bit to make, it was impractical to insist that everyone wore them… there simply wasn't enough cloth to go around. None of this has anything to do with the wealth or impoverishment of any particular student, of course.

    Well, let's leave off for the minute that the idea of dan-i ranking is a very modern one as well, and simply point out that, if some traditions decide to get students of a certain rank to wear hakama, that's really up to them for whatever reasons they have. It should also be noted that many systems have you in hakama from day one… such as many weapon systems, and many of the more classical arts. I mean… if you do Iai, or Jodo, or Kyudo, you're wearing hakama from day one. Same with a number of kenjutsu systems… and some jujutsu ones (although they might only wear them for embu, and practice in a regular judo-gi instead on a day-to-day basis).

    Eh, not so much. Most karate systems don't have any usage of hakama at any (official) point in their ranking. Certain instructors might like the look… and wear them accordingly… the heads of various systems might do it to echo back to an older-value Japan… but really, it's a personal thing for each of them. In other words, there is no single reason any particular individual wears them with regards to karate instructors… it might be a look thing… it might be that they also train in weapon systems, and adopt them across… it might be that they think it implies something about their status within the school… they might not even know how to wear them properly… particularly Westerners who just wear them to look good (I've seen some highly amusing photos over the years…).
     
  8. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    hakama was the normal everyday wear of old japan. basically if your wearing just the dogi bottoms your in a type of underwear. so i would imagine that in any formal photo you would not want to be in your underwear and wear your hakama to be decent. times have changed and no one wears hakama anymore thus it would seem the natural progression that sports would follow national trends and not wear one. it is and was quite common for martial artists of main land Japan to wear hakama, Okinawa is an other story. in Okinawa you will find many pictures of karate-ka wearing only fundoshi which really is underwear (ie loincloth) most martial arts in Japan are probably from a Samurai tradition and would seem normal to wear one where as Okinawan karate is not. that being said i would assume any photos taken in Japan would be more apt to be in hakama and photos taken in Okinawa would probably not be in hakama.
    the only Karate sensei i know of that wore hakama was Shoshin Nagamine. he was a recognized member of Diahonzan Chozen Ji Zen lineage and would be somewhat required or expected to wear one due to the tradition there. he might of also wore one due to his age and status in the community but on that i am not sure.
    as far as dan rankings only wearing one i would also make the assumption that because real hakama are very expensive that organisations would not require new students to purchase one, untill the student was sure he was going to stick around awhile.
     
  9. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    Thank you for your input Chris.

    In answer to some of those points.
    1. In hebrew the word Ha means "the".
    So what is the word "ha" making a difinitive article about...
    Q. What is Kima? A. An Astronomical perspective on the Talmudic passage in tractate Berachot 58
    Not that it even should matter to you what my phone's autocorrect does.

    As for Karataka Sensai.
    Bite me. Seriously. Do I have to use a & sign or a comma.

    Or can you employ common sense here?
    Or must you be a grammar and syntax cop as well as an auto correct sheriff?
    Sometimes you come off as a smug and pompous know it all jerk. This is coming from a smug and pompous jerk, so I speak from experience.

    If you are aware and okey with that, carry on.
    Please dont consider it an attack. It isn't meant as such although it could be taken that way.

    Hopefully a muture person such as yourself can appreciate input. Or have a laugh.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2015
  10. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    I found a statement that supports your loin cloth...

    In Okinawa, karate practitioners wore ''Han Hakama" (short pants above the knees) until the beginning of the Showa Era, which began in 1926, for karate training. The top was usually bare.
    As Karate gradually spread to the other prefectures, Judo wear was copied until the use of present day Karate wear, which has become popular. Judo begins with a grappling position. Therefore, the length of the top, outer sleeves, mouth of the sleeves, belt, length of the hakama (pants), etc. were decided in detail. It is design so be able to grab easier. For ex ample, the belt is use in a throwing technique, and is also wrapped around the wrist for katame waza. If Judo had different wear, I believe those techniques would have been completely different. In Karate, being topless does not have any adverse effects on technique. The bottoms may be necessary, but the tops are not used. The bottoms are best as Han Hakama (short pants). In Karate, the main purpose of wearing the top is to keep sweat from flying all over during training or competition. A shortcoming to wearing a top is that it slows the movement of strikes and blocks. It especially becomes a hindrance when using the "ukeharai" (block). training the use of both arms. the feeling at the moment of the "uke" or to evade a bIow, etc. For those who prefer to wear a top, a haIf-sleeve top (above the elbows) is most suited. Karate wear of pre-World War II were all half-sleeves.
    Some may feel that being bare-chested is rude to others. But I ask you how about the Japanese national games such as Sumo, or wrestling and boxing of other countries? I believe that muscles developed through karate training should be shown. Developed muscles of Sumo, wrestling, boxing. weight lifting, etc. have attracted many and have resulted in its spread and development.
    Recently, some have extended the sleeves of the Karate tops down to the wrist. They punch through the air making snapping sounds are ecstatic with themselves. By wearing short pants and training bare-chested, the movements become better and the skin gets stronger. It is also more economical, easier to carry and easier to wash. During major Judo competitions, the matches are halted because the belts come untied or the wear becomes disarranged. There is already talk of improving the Judo wear. For Karate, after sufficient probing, there is a need to have Karate wear that is unique to Karate.


    -Miyazato Eiichi - Okinawa Den Goju Ryu Karate-do, 1978
     
  11. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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  12. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Okay, fair enough.

    Settle, mate. You've missed the point that the mistake shows… such a basic error would not be made by anyone who genuinely had some familiarity with the terms, culture, and language of karate practitioners. I'm not being a "syntax cop"… I'm highlighting that you're showing that your knowledge is rather below where you think it is.

    Okay… but what does that have to do with karateka wearing hakama?
     
  13. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    It doesn't.
    This nitpickery.... eyeroll.

    I brought the link up because someone (besides yourself) might find it enlightening.

    There may be a number of related factoids that could very well relate to a karateka wearing hakama in the link.

    Another thing...
    The idea of Kyu/Dan ranks within Karate is something very Japanese. Were it not for Dai Nippon Butoku Kai and Dr. Kano... okinawan karate wouldn't have them.

    What does that have to do with guys who practice in loincloths.. going to a judogi and full on hakama?

    Perhaps a great deal.

    As for your allegation, about my not genuinely not having familiarity with terms, culture langauge of karate etc.

    I am going to use a technical term from a buddy in NSW since your an awesome aussie you can translate it for me.
    "Piss off, Mate"

    "Good Day, Sir"
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2015
  14. Chris Parker

    Chris Parker Grandmaster

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    Oh dear lord… you started a thread on karateka wearing hakama, and are posting articles on other arts instead… and if it wasn't for Kano (and the game of Go) there likely wouldn't be any dan or kyu ranks in martial arts at all… but none of this has much to do with anything. Superficial connections are random associations are not actual research or information… post hoc ergo propter hoc is not a guide for how to think.
     
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  15. jks9199

    jks9199 Administrator Staff Member

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    Wow... Seems like some nerves are getting frayed a bit.

    Perhaps we can all remember that we lose a lot of nuance in textual communication.
     
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  16. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    Perhaps
     
  17. hoshin1600

    hoshin1600 Senior Master

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    1111.jpg 1947.jpg kanbun.gif kyan_chotoku2.jpg Uechi Kanei.jpg articles-chojun-miyagi-and-students-1942.jpg
    as you can see, pictures often required formal wear. while you only see the top in the pictures of Kanbun and Kanei Uechi we can assume there was hakama to go with the kimono.i find the picture of master Kyan interesting. traditional Japanese wear with what looks like a european over coat. also the student on the left has an interesting belt. the picture of Miyagi sensei shows the common practice of the teacher wearing formal wear and the students in practice attire. we should remember that these pictures where from a period in time where a photograph was a big deal. it would be like posing for a professional painter for a portrait rather than todays instant selfies. the subjects new these photographs were going to be around and remembered for a long time. like i said you wouldnt want to be remembered by the generations to come, standing around in your underwear.
     
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  18. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    Gi pants and sash... a nod to Ch'uan *ahem* Kenpo roots of Tang Hand aka Tou-Te. Which after 1935 came to be called Empty Hand for the same arts in Japan.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2015
  19. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master Black Belt

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    As found in an article on A "jiu jutsu" website.
    It supports your formal attire position.
    There are some who say that the keigogi or judogi were much like long john under garments. It makes sense in that respect. Layering is a natural response to cold climate in the fall winter and spring.

    Hakama are the skirt-like pleated pants worn by higher ranking belts (usually instructors) in more traditional Japanese martial arts schools. They are worn by black belts and sometimes brown belts in Aikido and in some more traditional Jiu-jitsu schools. This seemingly innocuous piece of clothing is an identifiable topic in the ongoing debate of tradition vs. practicality.

    The hakama were originally worn by the Samurai. The baggy, flowing material served to protect their legs while riding, but it is also generally accepted that they had the side benefit of disguising their stance and footwork from their opponents.

    The hakama also have symbolic importance, though I imagine that the significance of the pleats was added after the fact and not when the garment was originally conceived. The five front pleats are said to represent Confucian virtues valued by the Samurai:

    Jin – Love and Sympathy
    Gi – Truth and Justice
    Rei – Courtesy
    Chi – Wisdom
    Shin – Faith

    Nowadays, the dojos that still use hakama generally introduced when a student earns their black belt and/or becomes an instructor. And while I can appreciate their symbolism, I find that hakama interfere with instruction, for the some of the same reasons the Samurai wore them.

    The pants hide the instructor’s hip and leg movements often making it difficult for students to see the subtleties of their technique. Instructors often have to pull their hakama back so students can see.


    In my dojo, instructors wear black pants to represent the hakama. I feel this is sufficient in that it pays homage to the symbolic representation without impeding my teaching. That being said, my old Karate sensei would wear his hakama for belt gradings and important formal events. I wouldn’t mind introducing the hakama in this capacity. They really convey an air of authority, highlighting the importance of the event.

    The Hakama Debate: Tradition vs. Practicality | Pacific Wave Jiu-jitsu
     
  20. donald1

    donald1 Senior Master

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    What do you mean by that?
     

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