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TMA UnderGround >> Karate in Japan


1/16/05 7:43 PM
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FloridaArm Bar
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Edited: 16-Jan-05
Member Since: 05/20/2004
Posts: 601
"Anyway he insisted that you called him Okinawan instead of Japanese." Yeah I found that out my first day in Okinawa. Most consider themselves "Okinawan", not Japanese. At least the ones I communicated with anyways. Anybody have any experiences with the "buy me drinky girls"?
2/8/05 1:18 PM
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DaRealPorkChop
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Edited: 08-Feb-05
Member Since: 06/12/2003
Posts: 124
the fillipina ones, the old okinawan ones, the traditional lookin snack ones, or the high priced matsuyama ones? errrrrrrrr..... LOL
3/8/05 11:54 PM
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Opash
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Edited: 08-Mar-05
Member Since: 03/14/2002
Posts: 1256
LOL @ "Just make sure you don't forget the "H" on Hokama." In Okinawa there is pretty much a Dojo on every street corner, they really are hard to miss. Also, every few months there are big Karate tournaments/ seminars held in the Budokan. Yet, I would say from what I have seen a good 90% of it is not worth bothering with. A lot of schools are almost like the McDojo's you will find elsewhere in the world and not 'Hardcore' karate schools as you would imagine. Many mainly cater towards kids, others are of an exercise/ social gathering kind of thing people do. This is mainly because Okinawans are intent on keeping their traditions alive and do so my making kids learn them at a young age and to to them as recreation - karate being one of many. There of course are still the 'old school' teachers out there, but then they would be hard for you to find - particulaly if you don't speak Japanese and/or are Military (because not many Okinawan people speak English and there is a general distain for the Military - esp. among the older generation). Also, there are the 'international' dojo's who often speak decent English and often have foreigners visiting/training there. Yet, what they actually teach is not great - their main concern is being a big international school, having sattelite dojo's in 'The West' etc. Often these schools will have a real link to a traditonal lineage - yet as mentioned Okinawa is a small place, so that doesn't really mean a great deal. Having said all that, there are some VERY legit, skilled karateka around - but most of those I have come across purely by chance. Finally, the full contact styles: Kyokoshin, Seidokaikan, Dai-Jyoku(sp) are popular in Okinawa - and even more on mainland Japan. Those guys are most definately for real!
3/9/05 6:20 PM
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kroddy_man
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Edited: 09-Mar-05
Member Since: 01/01/2001
Posts: 182
"In Okinawa there is pretty much a Dojo on every street corner, they really are hard to miss." I believe this to be a great overstatement. In my experiences, the dojo are there, but not even close to being that prominent. -km
3/9/05 8:01 PM
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Opash
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Edited: 09-Mar-05
Member Since: 03/14/2002
Posts: 1262
They are not prominent if you are looking for a big sign that says 'KARATE' in Roman letters. If you have your eyes peeled you will see them, also look for the ankle-biters swarming around the streets in their gi's - this is always a sign that you are close. (OK, not EVERY sreet corner - but definately every few blocks)
3/10/05 10:08 AM
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damaebushi
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Edited: 10-Mar-05
Member Since: 08/13/2002
Posts: 801
kroddy_man and I have traveled several times to Okinawa for training, and I agree that dojos are not that prevelant. They are there, but not as much as in larger cities in the U.S. And yes, I know enough to not look for the Romanji lettering and can get by in Japan/Okinawa with their language(s). I also have noted that the dojos are, in fact, usually small, not so gaudy and flashy as in the U.S., and cater to smaller numbers of students. At least the ones I have seen were that way. Most Okinawan teachers I know tend to not get too excited about being prolific, but just want to teach those who are serious about learning. Very few of them rely on karate instruction as their sole source of income. If a student comes to the dojo to train, but is not serious and does not put forth proper effort, they are allowed to hang around, but are basically ignored and receive very little attention or quality, hands - on instruction. However, if a student proves him/ herself to be dedicated and serious, the training is absolutely outstanding. The above reflects my experiences in Okinawa. What others experience may well be different. kroddy_man and I tend to not frequent areas in immediate proximity to the military bases all that much (even though I served there as a Marine from 73 - 74), but prefer to experience the Okinawan people and culture without the influence of the military. It could well be that in the areas around the bases, things are a bit different. They usually are. Respectfully: Fred
3/14/05 5:24 PM
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FloridaArm Bar
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Edited: 14-Mar-05
Member Since: 05/20/2004
Posts: 802
I lived in Okinawa for a year and I would definitly say that the karate schools were not as prominant as Opash is implying. Because there are so many bases on such a small island, it is always hard to get too far away from a base. Opash, when was the last time you were over there?
3/14/05 7:23 PM
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Opash
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Edited: 14-Mar-05
Member Since: 03/14/2002
Posts: 1292
I live 'there'.
3/14/05 8:16 PM
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FloridaArm Bar
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Edited: 14-Mar-05
Member Since: 05/20/2004
Posts: 803
Really, well I guess I just didn't see them then. I was thinking that maybe it had been a long time since you were there. But since you live there that obviously isn't the case. What part of Oki do you live in?
3/14/05 9:18 PM
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Opash
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Edited: 14-Mar-05
Member Since: 03/14/2002
Posts: 1296
Urasoe shi. Don't get me wrong, I didn't mean to imply that Karate dojo's are as prevailent or prominent as McDonalds (and there is a lot of McDonalds in Oki). Just that they are there, and there are plenty of them about - if you keep your eyes peeled. Now finding one worth dedicating your self to training at ... thats a different story.
3/15/05 8:36 AM
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damaebushi
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Edited: 15-Mar-05
Member Since: 08/13/2002
Posts: 814
Urasoe is where I stay when I go to visit. My friend lives on Makiminato just off of the main drag. My dream is to live there. How did you end up living there, Opash, and how long have you done so? I am very envious. Respectfully: Fred
3/15/05 1:02 PM
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FloridaArm Bar
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Edited: 15-Mar-05
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Opash, do you speak fluent Japanese? Do you ever go on any of the bases?
3/15/05 7:22 PM
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Opash
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Edited: 15-Mar-05
Member Since: 03/14/2002
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FloridaArm Bar: I am not fluent (I think people use the term 'fluent' far to freely), but I get by in regular day-to-day life. I occassionaly visit Courtney as I have one or two friends who live there. Fred: I have been here around 2 years, I just kinda ended up here - I hate cold weather, so obviously Okinawa is an ideal place to be. Do you have any plans to visit soon?
3/15/05 10:57 PM
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damaebushi
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Edited: 15-Mar-05
Member Since: 08/13/2002
Posts: 821
Nobody hates cold weather and loves hot weather more than me. Okinawa is #1 on my "Where I Want To Live" list. The Florida Keys, the Carribean (sp), the South Pacific, or any warm place with an ocean, are right up there, too. I do not have any immediate plans to visit, but hopefully it won't be too long. Sometimes it happens pretty quickly. I am hoping next year during Obon at the latest. Respectfully: Fred
3/17/05 1:36 AM
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DaRealPorkChop
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Edited: 17-Mar-05
Member Since: 06/12/2003
Posts: 155
Man I miss oki... i used to work at Kadena Marina... Karate was available if you looked... yah the dojos were pretty small and not very remarkable (from the vantage point of the windows)- just some tatami mats and maybe a mirror... The offbase schools still beat the tar out of most of the onbase military practisioners in tournaments- some broken legs from low sidekicks come to mind... web kudos to anyone who could translate "uchinanchu deiji fura..." I'll be back some day...
3/21/05 10:39 PM
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ResuTudo
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Edited: 21-Mar-05
Member Since: 02/15/2003
Posts: 633
how does Zendokai differ from Daido, Shidokan, Seidokan, and Kyokushin?
4/25/05 11:48 AM
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khd29
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Edited: 25-Apr-05
Member Since: 02/18/2003
Posts: 2624
ttt Goju-Ryu, too, please. I was watching a Disc. channel show about MA and the karate dojo they visited was a Goju Ryu dojo. Seem interesting, lower body kicks and some joint locks, etc. Seems like a very "powerful" art.
4/25/05 9:34 PM
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FloridaArm Bar
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Edited: 25-Apr-05
Member Since: 05/20/2004
Posts: 1078
ttt glad to see this thread is still up.
5/4/05 4:48 PM
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FloridaArm Bar
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Edited: 04-May-05
Member Since: 05/20/2004
Posts: 1176
Front Snap Kick--- Hi Yah!!

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