We were delighted to welcome back Sensei Neil Jerome, 5th Dan as our guest instructor at our normal Saturday morning class in Greenwich. He lives in Norway and is only back in the UK for a few days at a time so we’re chuffed that he found time to come to Greenwich.
He broke the class into three sections. First he ran through conventional shotokan techniques getting everyone to practice syllabus moves. Then we moved onto chain punching from kung fu. These are rapid-fire punches which, although not as powerful as a conventional knock-down karate punch, can overwhelm your opponent. Sensei talked about chain punching in relation to getting stuck in the OODA Loop observe–orient–decide–act: by the time you’ve worked out you’ve been punched and should do something about it, you’ve been punched again and you can never react fast enough to block the punches.
Then he finished with some throws and locks which were “removed” from shotokan when it was introduced from Okinawa to Japan to avoid clashing with judo and other existing styles. These throws are still in the kata if you look closely enough.
“In karate, hitting, thrusting, and kicking are not the only methods, throwing techniques and pressure against joints are included … All these techniques should be studied referring to basic kata.” Gichin Funakoshi, the founder of modern shotokan karate