I've been a keen karate student for 16 years, Shukokai and Shotokan, but there still seems to be no shortage of things to learn and explore. I'm hoping this blog will allow me to share my experiences and hear other martial artists thoughts.

Inspiration comes from many places (2)…1960s Tokyo

A speculative search on eBay for books about Karate threw up Moving Zen by CW Nicol. It looked like a really interesting book so I ordered it and it arrived late last week. At 151 pages it looked like something I could read quite quickly so I made a start on Friday and have eagerly ploughing my way through it since. Nicol decided to head to Tokyo after taking part in an artic expedition keen to continue his studies in Judo and start studying Karate. Ultimately he decides to focus on Karate and his book is a fascinating account of his studies.

It’s great to get a glimpse of what studying Karate in the 1960s was like and the people involved. I had a real feeling of excitement when Nicol comes across great martial artists like Donn Draeger, Keinosuke Enoeda, and Hirokazu Kanazawa who I’d heard about previously.

As a Karateka it’s reassuring to follow Nicol’s account of his studies and see a similar journey as he initially focuses on his striking techniques but then as his understanding of Karate grows he understands more the value of kata.

Once I’ve finished reading it through first time around I plan to read it through again chapter by chapter and consider more deeply Nicol’s journey and his realisations about Karate but it leaves me with an even greater sense of the heritage of the art that I’m studying.

From which sources has your inspiration come recently?


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