Regarding Blocking

Joab

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Should each kata end and begin with a block? Should a form be more defensive and more focused on blocking than counter attacking? Should you block than strike, or block and strike at the same time? Or should you basically disregard blocking, believing that the counter attack is the way to go when attacked, your going to get hit or kicked anyway, strike back at the attacker but don't even try to block their hit or kick?

Well, I've experienced most of these trains of thoughts in studying four different forms. Even the one that told me there are no blocks in his system did have some, although very few, and only while striking at the same time. I do agree you should block and strike at the same time, as when your attacked you have very little time to work with, hit him or kick him as fast and as often as possible even while attacking. What do you think?
 

seasoned

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There are no blocks, they, are a waste of time. The secret is to not get hit. What you thought were blocks are just another way of striking.
 

Big Don

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Blocking with your face and/or groin is cheating, and will only be tolerated so others may laugh at you.
 

Uchinanchu

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There are no blocks, they, are a waste of time. The secret is to not get hit. What you thought were blocks are just another way of striking.

Darn! You gave away the secret! Yes, the 'secret' is to not get hit...and when you do get hit, refer to secret #1 again, because you obviously messed it up somehow.

And I concur with Seasoned. What you thought were blocks, were actually just another way of striking...and redirecting....and grappling....and, oh yeah...blocking.

Make it what you will. Learn the kata. Learn, practice and thouroughly understand the bunkai. Learn the principals. Then, eventually, make it your own.
Gambatte kudasai
穠簽*職糧瞽B
 

seasoned

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Darn! You gave away the secret! Yes, the 'secret' is to not get hit...and when you do get hit, refer to secret #1 again, because you obviously messed it up somehow.

And I concur with Seasoned. What you thought were blocks, were actually just another way of striking...and redirecting....and grappling....and, oh yeah...blocking.

Make it what you will. Learn the kata. Learn, practice and thouroughly understand the bunkai. Learn the principals. Then, eventually, make it your own.
Gambatte kudasai
穠簽*職糧瞽B
I gave away the obvious secret, "not get hit", a little extra, "blocks are strikes". You turn around and give away the whole 9 yards. Yes, I agree, Kata, bunkai, principals, and, make it all your own, are the missing ingredients to a fruitful karate experience.
 

MJS

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Should each kata end and begin with a block? Should a form be more defensive and more focused on blocking than counter attacking? Should you block than strike, or block and strike at the same time? Or should you basically disregard blocking, believing that the counter attack is the way to go when attacked, your going to get hit or kicked anyway, strike back at the attacker but don't even try to block their hit or kick?

Well, I've experienced most of these trains of thoughts in studying four different forms. Even the one that told me there are no blocks in his system did have some, although very few, and only while striking at the same time. I do agree you should block and strike at the same time, as when your attacked you have very little time to work with, hit him or kick him as fast and as often as possible even while attacking. What do you think?

Depends on the kata and perhaps the art from which the kata comes from. I have some that begin with a block, some that begin with a block and an immediate counter strike and I have some that begin with a defense to a set attack.

IMHO, I would not take a kata for what it shows on face value. Instead, it may take some digging to really see what is in the kata. I'll use the following example that happened to me:

A few years ago, one of the Black Belts affiliated with the school I train at, had George Dillman down for a seminar. First time meeting the man, and I had heard good and bad, however, I wanted to form my own opinion of him, so I went. He started covering some katas that some may not have known, however, I recognized them from my SKK days. I found it very interesting because he was covering things in those forms that were totally different from the way I learned them from my old teacher. Dillmans way made much more sense to me, and the applications were much more practical.

Moral of the story....sometimes you'd be surprised by what you'll learn, if you have someone, who really knows the applications, teaching you. :)
 
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J

Joab

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... my SKK days.

What is SKK? Thanks for taking my post seriously, I was getting tired of reading all the sarcasm in the other posts.
 

MJS

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... my SKK days.

What is SKK? Thanks for taking my post seriously, I was getting tired of reading all the sarcasm in the other posts.

Shaolin Kempo Karate. I originally started in the Villari system, changed to Parker and now Tracy. Its all the same, in a way, just a different branch of the tree. :)
 
OP
J

Joab

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Shaolin Kempo Karate eh? never heard of it. Thanks.
 

Daniel Sullivan

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Should each kata end and begin with a block? Should a form be more defensive and more focused on blocking than counter attacking? Should you block than strike, or block and strike at the same time? Or should you basically disregard blocking, believing that the counter attack is the way to go when attacked, your going to get hit or kicked anyway, strike back at the attacker but don't even try to block their hit or kick?
Since you are addressing this in the context of kata, it will depend upon the kata. In taekwondo, all of the taegeuk forms and Koryo start off with a block of some kind, followed by either a hand strike or a kick. Generally, it is proscribed to perform the block and then to perform the strike. As for ending, all of the taegeuks and Koryo end with a strike of some kind. Once again, this is proscribed. Keep in mind that all taekwondo blocks are damaging blocks designed to injure the attackers, but the kata all begin with the premise of you being attacked first and defending in some fashion.

Changing this means that you are essentially creating a new kata which may or may not be based on a preexisting one.

If your question is about creating a kata, do what you feel is approrpriate.

Well, I've experienced most of these trains of thoughts in studying four different forms. Even the one that told me there are no blocks in his system did have some, although very few, and only while striking at the same time. I do agree you should block and strike at the same time, as when your attacked you have very little time to work with, hit him or kick him as fast and as often as possible even while attacking. What do you think?
In taekwondo, the blocks are actually strikes, as Seasoned described. The block is intended to damage the attacker's limb, in addition to keeping it from hitting you. So in essence, you block and strike simultaneously.

One can also practice to execute the block with one limb while simultaneously striking with the other, though none of the kata that I am familiar with incorporate that.

In terms of an actual attack outside of a sparring scenario, I tend to rely more on movement and avoidance and quick strikes aimed at killing an attacker's mobility. Thankfully, I have had very few occasions to have to test that, but I have had enough to know what works for me.

Much also depends on the nature of the attack and the circumstances in which the attack takes place. If I am trying to protect my children, I will handle myself differently than if I am myself the intended victim; protection of others limits your options, as you must either maintain a proximity to your charge or hold up the attacker to allow your charge to escape. In that scenario, blocking would likely be a greater factor, as your mobility will be limited.

There are other circumstances that may limit your mobility; being attacked while seated at a table, for instance.

Daniel
 

shihansmurf

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... my SKK days.

What is SKK? Thanks for taking my post seriously, I was getting tired of reading all the sarcasm in the other posts.

The other posts were taking you seriously.

There is a school of thought that states that there are no blocks in karate. There are a few interpretations of this principle.

1. What appears to be blocks are actually strikes to pressure points in the limbs.

2. The blocking movements are actually, when combined with the footwork, actually ways to escape from various grabs.

3. The blocks and associated re-chambers of such are grabs and are used to enhance the power of strikes, as breaking techniques, or as throws.

4. Insert other interpretation of the blocking movements as appropriate.

The point to the above is is that the is a great deal of depth to the material contained in the kata and there are several different ways to interpret what is there. Some times a Block is just a block, though to paraphrase Freud.

Ian Abernathey (I may have misspelled his first name) has a great series of books on bunkai that illustrates several alternate applications for the blocks in the kata as does George Dillman, although I personally don't believe in the pressure point knock outs, his interpretations of the blocking techs as escape moves in interesting. Another great resource for this Is a book from Rob Redmond that you can order through 24fightingchickens.


Hope this helps
Mark
 

Xue Sheng

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Take this whole idea to Xingyiquan and defense and attack are the same things. So all blocks are attacks or combined with an attack.

Old Xingyi saying, attack is defense.
 

Thesemindz

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I'll ask again. Completely seriously. Because if you don't have a concrete purpose in mind, the answer to the question is unimportant.

What is the purpose of kata?


-Rob
 

jks9199

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In my style's forms -- they all end with a strike or finishing move. Most start with some sort of defensive sequence. After all -- they weren't about teaching you to go out and punch somebody for no reason.

But a block in a form or kata doesn't have to be a block, defining block as "stopping the attacking weapon." And there are some "strikes" that I'd actually call blocks, when you really look at what's happening and what makes sense...
 

terryl965

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Blocks are a strike and vice versa. I mean anybody can evade but can you break someone forearm with a block when they are trying to hit you? Also I know alot of people believe in evading like me so I stay away from bars now.
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seasoned

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... my SKK days.

What is SKK? Thanks for taking my post seriously, I was getting tired of reading all the sarcasm in the other posts.
Sorry for the cut and dry response to your question. I first began to question basic blocks after many hours of kata practice, only to find that they didn't work in sparring. They are great for hand/eye coordination and have value, but because they can be interpreted as strikes also, it makes their presents in kata moves and bunkai, a moot issue when thinking of blocks alone. I wasn't trying to come off as sarcastic, but I don't think I could have done your question justice at face value, as it was asked. :asian:
 

searcher

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Rob makes a good point with his question,
what is the purpose of the kata
.

I have a ton of different kata/hyung/tul/forms that I run through on a daily basis. Some are heavy on the blocking, some are not. Some block and counter at the same time, some do not. Each kata has its own purpose and intent. Are they wrong? No. It does what the originator wanted it to do.
 

Thesemindz

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But what is the purpose of their practice? What did the originator of those kate intend? Why do them? What do they offer? How does one benefit from performing kata?

If we don't know the answers to these questions, then there is no possible way for us to answer the original question.


-Rob
 

Xue Sheng

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But what is the purpose of their practice? What did the originator of those kate intend? Why do them? What do they offer? How does one benefit from performing kata?

If we don't know the answers to these questions, then there is no possible way for us to answer the original question.


-Rob

Not all styles have a kata but they all do have a block. But as to kata....here
 
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