Karateka Hit With Paper Bullets

Karateka Hit With Paper Bullets

Just a quick story about one of my old students. He was a super nice guy. You couldn’t wish to meet anyone nicer. He was kind, considerate, respectful. He was a stand up citizen. And he’s the sort of person I want to train with and be around. But he came to me this one time and said,

Sensei, could you help me with my fighting?

I keep getting hurt when they hit me, but it doesn’t seem to have any effect when I hit them. I am trying really hard.

I knew exactly what the problem was. A lot of karateka have this problem.

My friend, who was a good karateka and a nice person, he would fire paper bullets. Paper fists, paper feet, paper elbows, etc. One of my other friends in the dojo would fire steel pointed bullets, that would penetrate the target.

Even when he controlled everything, you would feel the penetration and hurt of his strikes.

I wanted to try and explain to him how he could turn his paper punches, strikes and kicks into steel, pointed bullets, that were on fire as they penetrated the target.

A lot of it is in the mind, In fact, most of it is!

My friend had brilliant karate technique. He was fast, so he had a certain amount of power as well. He had really good karate technique, but he didn’t have that………….

I know I like to refer back to the legend that is Mike Tyson. He still has it, but when he was in his boxing in his prime, at the end of his punches, there was not only focus and intent, but hate!

He wanted to destroy the target and I know that sounds horrible, but if you don’t want to fire weak karate techniques, you have to use this mindset and apply everything you have to the end of that technique, so that your breathing, your intent, your focus, your tension and your hate hit the target.

You have to want to destroy the target.

A good example would be, if you’re in a karate dojo and you’re striking the focus pads, one of your friends has got focus pad on the hands when you hit, so they’re protected.

Don’t just try to hit the pad, do not just try to destroy the pad, but try and break their hand, try and get their arm to rip out the socket at the shoulder, I know it sounds horrible, but It’s actually good fun and they’re not going to get hurt because of the thick pad protecting them.

It instils this focus and intent on the end of your technique. Then you apply that in your karate basics, your kumite and your kata practice. Combine this with moving in a relaxed way it will really help you fire those steel bullets that are on fire, instead of those paper bullets. Oss!

Linden Huckle

About the author

Linden Huckle has been practicing and teaching karate for over 50 years and believes first and foremost, karateka should enjoy their karate. He says 'there is nothing better than seeing a person develop into a great person through their karate practice, while at the same time enjoying karate.'

Linden Huckle