The IKKO training and teaching material has many principles that allow the instructor and budding karate-ka the essence of our art. In the case of kata and kumite we have 10 important principles that each student of our art must learn and instil in their training. Without this kata and kumite is just movements and the execution of technique are just flopping the hands and legs and moving the body forward and back or side to side. The principles are as follows:-
1. Seishin - a sincere spirit - meaning to training with an unwavering spirit of total committed mind, body and technique (Shin, Gi Tai);
2. Metskai - Eye focus - meaning that we must look inside us and determine the faults and weakness and trying every day to overcome these by effort not just doing nothing. We must be training and train our Kata and Kumite drills together with Kihon and combine this into a total improvement plan by looking deeply at each aspect and even minute detail in execution of each technique and each movement. Our eye see things much earlier than they are happening, being aware at all times;
3. Taisabaki- Body evasion or movement - the human body is a moving body we must always be training and being flexible, not rigid and hard, taisabaki also means training everyday sweating every day to keep the body ready and pliable at all times and fighting oneself to beat the laziness and lethargy. We must move all the time not stagnating in one place and feeling sorry for ourselves. We must make our "own luck" and be ready in body for any eventuality;
4, Goju - Hard and Soft - Our technique must flow like water, and we must know when to be hard and when to be soft, the same with our breathing it must be forceful or natural, training of Sanchin Kata and Tensho Kata must be done daily together with Naihanchi, these katas are the foundation of Karate-Do, we must know when to absorb and when to release. Development of Chi/Ki is the training daily with Eye, Posture and Breath as the focus, In eye we have discussed this already, in Posture we must keep our back straight and tense our power in the Tandem and make the pelvic are a source of our power and energy, in breath is life, so we must be natural and know when to use our breath for which circumstance, it is applicable for both kata and kumite;
5. Kime - Focus - we must learn to concentrate our power and intention in one point and use this for effective outcomes. When we take on a task we must be focused on accomplishing it with maximum effectiveness and commitment, it is executive at the highest level with total commitment and drive.
6. Kiai - Spirit Shout - the culmination of all forces into one precise moment of concentration of energy, spirit and breath. We use this to enhance our energy or to absorb any challenge by expelling our energy physically my mouth but rather this comes from the depths of our stomach called the Tanden. Merely use the mouth to make a sound is not sufficient it is your entire mind, body and spirit that is employed in this execution;
7. Kokyu - Breath - As stated previously breath is life, one can go without food or water for days, but one cannot go without breath for a few minutes. Breathing is possibly one of the most important functions in the human body Again Sanchin Kata and Tensho Kata must be practised daily with the augmentation of Naihanchi. Controlling breath is very important and this is not only important in Karate-Do but in life. Understanding of exhalation and inhalation is something taught from a very junior level.
8. Ku - Balance - Balance in every aspect in life is a very important principle, excessive indulgence in ant activity or obsession is detriment. This is body, mind and spirit. So, balance in Karate-Do is also critical for victory over oneself and over your opponent. You are constantly trying to unbalance you opponents mind, body and spirit, and maintaining yours in the process. Stances and transitions are trained and the interpretation of the movements with kata are now implemented in kumite;.
9. Isshin - One Heart - Total commitment to whatever one is doing to the point that no obstacle will affect one in this process. The heart is the governor of all our emotions and fears, and we must purify this by training putting our mind, body and spirit through rigorous training and pushing ourselves past our limits in doing so, this increasing our threshold Not being satisfied until we have achieved our objectives and mission.
10. Zanshin - Total Switch On- It is light putting on your lights at home, once the execution is done it happens instantly, no thinking or delay just do it. But it also talks to being aware all the time without putting your guard down also being alert and ready to perform and react to whatever the challenge.
So all students of IKKO must instil this in their kata and kumite training and attempt with sincere action to train this daily in their lives in every aspect. It will improve your mental, body and spirit development and Karate-Do is merely a tool towards making this 10 principle a reality in every aspect of your life. Never giving up and always pushing yourself to new highs and tackling new challenges as challenges and not merely problems. We must defeat our challenges and make them our empowerment instead of our problems.
As I said in class merely thinking or wanting to be a Doctor will not make you a doctor you have to want, strive and obsessively pursue this as your lifetime ambition and goal. Without action the is no result, so action in our sense is training every sweating every day. Many martial artist today talk too much and do very little. This is why our motto is training before talking. Because after you experience the pain will one get the gain.
Until Next month keep training and the fruit of success will definitely we sweet.
Shihan Imtiaz Abdulla