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White Belt
White Belt

Joined: 18 Sep 2008
Posts: 1
Location: Westminster, Colorado
Styles: Wado Ryu Karate

PostPosted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 12:00 pm    Post subject: Learning About Wado Karate Reply with quote

History of Wado Karate

In 1934, Master Hironori Ohtsuka founded the traditional Japanese Karate style called Wado-Ryu Karate – which translates to “way of peace” or “way of harmony”. Master Ohtsuka believed that “violent actions may be understood as the way of martial arts, but the true meaning of martial arts is to seek and attain the way of peace and harmony.”

Considered as a pioneer of the martial arts due to his dedicated training and innovative ideas, Otsuka Sensei began his martial arts career in Shindo Yoshin Ryu Jujitsu, and than trained under the personal guidance of Shotokan founder Gichin Funakoshi – who is sometimes recognized as the Father of Karate.

After years of training and studying, Ohtsuka Sensei decided to create his own Karate style by combining the two arts and creating “Wado” – a fluid, yet powerful martial art.

By 1938, Wado-Ryu was officially registered and later recognized by the Japan Martial Arts Federation as “traditional” Karate – 1 of 4 styles in Japan that had been awarded this status.

What You Will Learn

Most Wado Karate schools are very traditional due to its roots and history. This is a great environment to learn in because the student will experience the true essence of Wado. However, some creative Wado-Ryu instructors have incorporated modern training and teaching techniques to accommodate a larger student base.

Classes will consist of Karate basics such as punches, kicks, blocks, and strikes – including several stances to build strength in the legs, develop coordination, and improve balance. Along with these basic techniques, students will learn how to refine their timing by performing reaction drills and combining them with kicks and punches. This teaches the student how to counter and/or evade an attacker.

In addition, another focus in Wado Karate classes are katas – detailed choreographed patterns of stances combined with basic Karate techniques. To some practitioners, this is considered as the foundation of Wado, since Otsuka Sensei spent countless hours perfecting katas.

Once you become a black belt in Wado, students will also learn Kihons – choreographed Karate techniques, however performed with a partner. The attacker has certain punches, kicks, and strikes to deliver, while the defender has to execute precise blocks, evasions, and counters. This is where Wado really differentiates itself from other styles because it uses the hips and body to evade attackers, along with their energy, and counter with strikes, throws and/or locks.

Your First Day

As I mentioned, Wado Karate can be a very traditional martial art, so your first class will probably cover some of the traditions of Karate. For example, you will learn that you need to bow at the dojo (training) floor before entering or leaving, as well as bow to other black belts that enter or leave the dojo floor because this shows respect.

More than likely you will be in a class that includes other beginners of the same age. In these classes they will teach you how to punch, kick, and block correctly, and demonstrate which part of the body you want to use when executing these techniques. They may also teach you some very basic stances so you understand how to perform them later in your katas.

Required Equipment

The only real equipment you will need is a Gi and Obi (uniform and belt). Anything else is simply considered additional curriculum to a Wado Karate schools program. Many schools teach controlled free-style sparring, therefore will require you to purchase protective gear such as a helmet, hand and feet pads, chest protector, mouth piece, and groin protector for guys. Other schools may also teach you how to use a weapon.

Traditionally, Wado-Ryu does not have a weapon in their art, as it is an empty hand style, however the instructor may have learned it somewhere else and decided to include this in their curriculum.

Expected Costs

The cost of training in Wado-Ryu can vary, so there is no definitive answer. And, it depends on the school's curriculum, since some studios may have mandatory purchases such as sparring equipment or training videos. I suggest you ask the instructor what are the required purchases in order to train at their school so you can budget accordingly.
Javier Lozano Jr
The Dojo of Karate
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KF Administrator

Joined: 01 May 2001
Posts: 27128
Location: Los Angeles, California

PostPosted: Fri Apr 24, 2009 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your submission.
Patrick O'Keefe - Administrator
Have a suggestion or a bit of feedback relating to Please contact me! Articles - Awards - Member of the Month - User Guidelines
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KF Sensei
KF Sensei

Joined: 31 Mar 2006
Posts: 27914
Location: Hays, KS
Styles: Taekwondo, Combat Hapkido, Aikido, GRACIE

PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2009 3:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the introduction to Wado.
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Brown Belt
Brown Belt

Joined: 29 Sep 2008
Posts: 643

Styles: JKF Wado-Kai

PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 3:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Javykixs,

Nice to see a Wado article on here.

Can I ask what your background is in Wado?

Aslo, where did you get most of the information posted?

Not saying its wrong, but there are bits that aren't quite right imo.

But... I am am happy to stand corrected.

"A lot of people never use their initiative.... because no-one told them to" - Banksy
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Yellow Belt
Yellow Belt

Joined: 21 Dec 2011
Posts: 54
Location: East Sussex UK
Styles: Traditional Shotokan Karate. Wudang Tai Chi.

PostPosted: Sun Jan 01, 2012 9:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

WELL! I have to say Javykixs, that my time in Wado Ryu was anything BUT geared towards the Maritial Arts!!
In a 1.5 hour session, (for my first four lessons), our lesson consisted of thus:
20 press ups.
20 sit ups.
Running 10 times around the gym, (equaliing 1 mile, a young girl had one of those timers strapped to her ankle!),
20 squats.
20 star jumps.
5 minutes running on the spot.
Then we ran the perimeter of the gymnasium 3 times.
Then we did ten basic choku zuki, (straight punch), in Hachiji Dachi stance, THEN all the above exercises again.
Then ten basic oi zuki, (stepping punches), then all the above exercises again.
THEN we cooled down and finished!
This was the same format in all four lessons!
I dont mind having a workout at any time, you have to expect that in Maritial Arts Training, AND its good for you.
But maybe i picked the wrong School to go to, the wrong teacher, i dont know, i gave up after 4 lessons, i felt it was more of a cardio/exercise class, rather than a Maritial Arts class.
I found a Shotokan Karate Club soon after, which is more in tune with my needs and has a mixture of both exercise AND Traditional Karate.
I know i wont be practising 'Wado' anytime in the near future!
''Board's..........don't hit back'' The late and very great Bruce Lee, in the movie Enter The Dragon.
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