Friday, 17 October 2014

Circular Movement

As symbolized in the mark of the Gojuryu Karatedo Yoyogi Ryushinkan Dojo (shown below), one of the outstanding features of this style of karate is its use of circular movement, especially when blocking. As this site puts it: 

The martial art of Okinawan Goju-ryu as developed by Chojun Miyagi is a true combat art, not at all suited to modern day sport karate competition. Goju-ryu is a counter-attacking system based on a synthesis of hard linear type techniques with softer circular movements. Goju-ryu’s circular blocking actions and evasive body movements not only deflect and/or absorb an opponent’s energy, but serve to wind up the body like a spring in order to unleash the art’s explosive counter-attacks.  

For example, when an opponent starts an attack, a circular movement can be used to forestall the blow, depriving the opponent of his or her power.  If a punch is fast but not very powerful, it is possible to block it directly with a straight movement. But it is much more difficult, if not impossible, to block a fast and powerful punch directly. Therefore, such a punch must be blocked or diverted with a circular movement. This may include rotation of the wrists and forearm as well as the hips in order to deflect the attack. The feet, too, are moved in a circular (or elliptical), sliding motion, whether moving forward or backward.

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