Karate can be described as a martial art or as a method of combat, using a wide variety of techniques: blockages, attacks, dodges, projections and keys.
Karate is one of the most dynamic of all martial arts. A well-trained karateka is able to perfectly coordinate his body and mind, allowing him to control his physical power at will. However, physical strength does not necessarily make a good karateka.
On the contrary, it is rather his ability to control and coordinate his body and mind that ensures a good level. The benefits of karate are numerous in the life of a modern man. On a daily basis, we tend to forget the usefulness of physical and mental exercise. The practice of karate strengthens the body, develops coordination, accelerates reflexes and increases vigour. Karate is an activity for which age is not an obstacle.
The practice of karate is divided into three aspects: kihon (the essential elements), kata (form) and kumite (training/fighting in pairs).
By adding the suffix "do" ("the way"), or karate-do, it implies that karate is a lifestyle that goes far beyond just self-defense applications. In traditional karate-do as we practice it, we must always keep in mind that the real opponent is oneself.
The founder of modern Shotokan karate Gichin Funakoshi said that spirit and technique are one in true karate. We must therefore strive to make our physical techniques a reflection of our mind and to improve our mind through understanding the essence of physical techniques.
By improving our training, we improve our mind and mentality. For example, eliminating indecisive and weak movements in our karate can help us eliminate weaknesses and hesitations from our mind and vice versa.