Goju-ryu incorporates both circular and linear movements into its curriculum, combining hard striking attacks such as kicks and close hand punches with softer open hand circular techniques for attacking, blocking, and controlling the opponent.
Kihon (基本) means “fundamental”. It refers to the basic techniques that are taught and practiced as the foundation of martial arts. This would include stances, punches, kicks and blocks, cuts and thrusts. Kihon techniques are practiced during each training session. Every student should take Kihon seriously as it is of utmost importance when executing a specific attack or defensive move. The mastery of kihon is essential to all advanced training, and includes the practice of correct body form and breathing. Without a good foundation, it is difficult achieve a high level of Karate-Do.
Kata (型) is the essence and foundation of Karate-Do. It is about performing fixed sequences comprising specific defence and attacking techniques from imaginary defending, attacking and fighting directions. Kata teaches concepts such as timing and distance, executed at fast (hard) and slow (soft) speeds. Practicing Kata enhances awareness, spirit, focus, strength, speed, concentration and stamina.
Goju-Ryu Karate-Do Katas:
- Geksai (Attack and Destroy) I
- Geksai (Attack and Destroy) II
- Saifa (Smash and Tear)
- Sanchin (Three battles)
- Tensho (Heaven’s Breath)
- Seiyunchin (Attack, Conquer and Suppress)
- Shisochin (Destroy in 4 Directions)Sanseru (36 hands)
- Seipai (18 hands)
- Kururunfa (Holding and striking)
- Seisan (13 hands)
- Suparinpei (108 hands)
Kumite (組手) involves pre-arranged or free sparring. It employs various punches, kicks, blocks and strikes against an opponent using the techniques learned from the Kihon and Kata. Kumite develops skill such as adjusting fighting distance, defensive movements and counters against actual attacks. As skill level progresses, Kumite become harder with a greater element of surprise being introduced.