karate ka

Ibuki and Makoto

Here’s my submission for the UDON Capcom Fighting Tribute!

I’ve always been a fan of these two ladies from Street Fighter 3; Third Strike. The implied rivalry between these two in their intro animation captured my imagination when i first booted the game up. I was glad to have a chance to paint a duel between this ninja and karate-ka. This painting will show up in the art book that will be released in September of 2015, so pick it up if you get a chance!

- Capcom Fighting Tribute will premiere with a limited-run convention edition hardcover at San Diego Comic-Con, July 9-12! http://www.udonentertainment.com/blog/news/round-1-of-udons-san-diego-comic-con-exclusives
- The standard edition of Capcom Fighting Tribute will be released September 2015. Links to pre-order the book at a variety of online retailers can be found here: http://www.udonentertainment.com/blog/product/capcom-fighting-tribute

The Karate-ka and the Bumblebee

There is something you need to know about me.

I am terrified of spiders, but all insects are on my no-thank-you-I’m-good-list.

So, naturally, when I accidentally brought a  REALLY BIG bumblebee into the house by accident, I wasn’t thrilled, at all.

But I know that bumblebees are important to our environment, and they won’t sting. Thus I set out to do the impossible (for me):

Friendly sparring with a bumblebee

Originally posted by aeonmagnus

I was a little afraid of it, so I applied the following tactics:

  • Get the biggest glass you can find, with an old cutting board
  • Open the door
  • WAIT

The bumblebee was feisty and much more scared than I was:

Flying around frantically against the glass, moving up and down etc.

So I figured I would wait, try to guide it out and if possible: catch it.

Originally posted by elssjgoku

But I suck at catching insects.

So I approached it like a dojo-sparring match:

  1. I tired my opponent out, letting them flail around, not getting close.
    I’m lazy, I let my opponents work for me.

  2. I gave them a little nudge or small jab to stir them up.
    Don’t let them think you’re lazy even though you are.

  3. With my opponent exhausted, I caught them in their weak moment.
    Just like I did with the bumblebee.

How to do this?




You need to be extremely patient when tiring someone else out. You might even want to let the first few openings slip by. This way you protect yourself from any energy and speed they still have at this point. Patience my friend, when it is your time, there will be no doubt about it.

Keep moving though, you do not want to be in a state of punching bag. Keep moving; left, right, even forward works when timed correctly!

Metsuke means the art of observing. If you can observe your opponent well and see everything they do, you can always anticipate appropriately. 

These tactics work great against an overly active or aggressive sparring partner, and when you have to spar against lower ranks.

Oh! And the bumblebee is flying freely again of course!

Originally posted by naturegifs

Martial Arts naiveté


Random person: “Oh, you do Tae Kwon Do.”

Karate-ka: “No, I do Karate.”

Random person: “It’s not the same thing?”


Tae Kwon Do 

Same random person: “Oh, you do Karate.”

Tae Kwon Do-ka: “No, I do Tae Kwon Do”

Same random person: “It’s not the same thing?”


That’s what I mostly say when I see new students flooding the dojo at the start of the season.


And I hereby deeply apologize for being absent the past time.

You see boys and girls, there comes a terrible time in every karate-ka’s life. Summer vacation. 

‘Season break’. I hated it! Although I trained through the summer it was a bit thin with only once a week and a lot of recovering I still had to do because of my tendinitis. 

(It’s going well, thank you for your concern!)

Now that we have new students coming in, I’d like to share my personal thought/tip for both Sensei and Students.

Newbies are:

  1. Ignorant
  2. Insecure
  3. Inspiring

Because they don’t know how to do anything yet, they dive in head first (and end up falling flat on their face) or they’re a bit shy and need a little push.

Be their safety net.

Now I know that (new) students can pull off the most hilarious stunts. And to students that have been there for a while already and Sensei this is very amusing. No matter what amazingly ‘dumb’ thing a new student does:



Originally posted by failworldblog


Okay, maybe it can be funny. But try imagining how that student feels. You can see the shock on her face. It is so scary to fail. 

We all have been there. 

So no judgmental laughter!
Not even a chuckle.. 
Even if it wants to make you pee your pants. 

New students can be inspiring. They ask you questions you’ve never thought about. They can push you to think up new methods to teach. They bring a new spirit in a group, a chance to practice with a different person. 

  1. New students teach restraint on other students.
  2. New students bring fire to the spirit of your Sensei.
    (I love seeing fresh faces as much as the known ones)

New students are awesome.

So what are you waiting for?

Get your butt (back) in the dojo!

Karate for olympics, yay or nay?

So I will make this short and bittersweet:

I love karate, I really do. But sport karate has never really been part of my routine. Sport karate does ADD to shaping a karate-ka. But it does not add to karate itself in my opinion, not as a martial way.

Positive sides to sportkarate:

  • Athleticism is great 
  • In sparring, your reaction time is very fast
  • The focus you see during competition is real
  • It is great for a generic public to look at, it adds flavor to the karate dish!

And to me, that’s about it. But in my opinion this is what it comes down to:

Kumite - a game of tag

Yup, a game of tag. Tag, you’re it, I scored a point! Oh and the running around screaming when they think they’ve scored a point? 

Originally posted by callmeklimt

Ugh. Think I’m over exaggerating?

This is just a small example, search YouTube for kumite championships and you’ll find it allover. I’m not saying that this is a disgrace for karate, it is just how a sport evolved. Or in my opinion, devolved. Where is the real fight?!

Kata - A beautiful play

Now, I admit it, I love watching kata championships, it looks awesome. But in the back of my head there’s always this little voice whispering: this is so not… realistic? In any form, shape or way? Aren’t they going a bit too far with this?

European Karate Championships 2015 ITA va. ESP Male team kata final. 
So pretty to look at!

I will only quote what Hanshi Suzuki Tatsuo (8th Dan Wado karate)  said about kata competition:

“In my opinion, kata competition is not a good idea because, in competition, competitors want to get high marks so they over exaggerate the movement, losing the original movement of the kata. Karate kata is not a form of gymnastics. When doing kata in competition, hardly any people have an opponent in mind while doing it. It is not necessary to ki-ai many times in one kata. Once, twice, or at most three times is enough, too many, is a waste.”


So, I am wondering how the budoblr community sees this. Seriously, I want my opinions challenged and questioned because I am pretty critical!
Karate for olympics in 2020, yay, or nay?