Training at Home…

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    Jon Hodge

    I think it would be good to share our home training ideas with each other. I wrote a blog article, Practicing at Home with Shotokan Karate that has a few training routines in it. Please share your training systems and ideals with us.

    • This topic was modified 9 years, 6 months ago by Jon Hodge.
    • This topic was modified 9 years, 6 months ago by GMAU.

    Hi, my bottom lines are;
    1. Train every day.
    2. Kata every day.
    3. Train left and right even if you only demonstrate right for grading.
    4. Test the effectiveness of strikes on a bag or hand held shield if training with a partner.
    5. Stretch every day.
    6. I also use Hojo Undo or ‘Martial arts based weight training’.
    I use traditional tools like the Chishi but also Kettlebells, Clubbells and Dumbells.
    I have found that this method of training in conjunction with Jon and Michael’s courses is highly enjoyable and productive oaf great improvement.
    I have been moving and have had no Dojo for quite a few months and won’t until I set one up here.
    I feel that far from loosing out on training time I have been taking time to work on neglected parts of my technique and to be a beginner again after more than 30 years of Martial Arts training.
    I feel like an old Yamabushi!
    I am sure I will come out of this a better teacher too.

    Jon Hodge

    Here is another simple workout scheme for the white belt level. Of course you could modify this scheme for any level. You can modify the reps on any exercise you need more work on and you do need to work both side of your body…

    Jumping Jacks 25
    Kmarts 25
    pushup 10
    Situps 20
    Front Knee Lift 10
    Rear Knee Lift 10
    Squates 5
    Rear left kick – prone position 10
    Side Kick – prone position 10
    Fire Hydrants – prone position 10

    Jab 10
    Reverse 10
    Floor Balance 10
    Down Block 10
    Upper Block 10
    Inside out block 10
    Mid puch to solor plexus 10
    Punch to the Bridge of nose 10
    Triple Punch 10
    Front Snap Kick 10
    Rear leg snap fick 10
    Front Leg flip kick 10
    Rear leg round house 10

    Basic 1
    Basic 2
    Basic 3

    One Steps
    5 basic onesteps

    Beginnig Techniques
    Blocking and Punching


    I could not agree more. Kata daily. I also use Sensei Michael’s push up routine. I will access a Chishi off my friend who is 4th dan goju ryu. Sensei Michael Clark from Tasmania Australia had an excellent book called shin te tai and Hojo undo. I also watch morio Higoanna DVD encyclopedia of goju ryu for stretching, conditioning, makiwara, etc….Great stuff


    I would like to add one thing that has helped me in my martial arts over 30 years. When completing techniques, train slowly at first. Perfect the moves. Most beginners, and even advanced like to train fast and learn more and more before perfecting the basics. Let me tell you, the basics are essential to perfecting more advanced techniques. Without perfecting them first, your advanced techniques will be sloppy and inadaquate. I have emphasized this with my own students throughout the years. You get perfection by first learning slowly.


    I would like to hear from other students how the have used visualization tech. in their training sessions. I would love to hear other viewpoints.


    What ty bo hand held punching bag ok to use for karate punches and kicks.

    Jon Hodge

    I am not familiar with the ty bo hand held punching bag. If it is designed for punching, should be ok for karate hand techniques. Where you might run into a safety issue is kicking. The bag needs sufficient padding and surface area for full power kicking practice. I have used many smaller hand pads for targeting practice with kicks, blocks and punches where the person training practices targeting and control of kicks.


    This post has been very helpful in setting a routine for training


    I might be mistaken, or maybe it’s just that this post hasn’t aged fully gracefully… but in the techniques I don’t see these:
    – “inside out” block
    – basic 3.
    – 5 one-steps (only 2 in the videos)… or does this mean do the one-steps 5 times?

    Am I missing something? I know this is all just an example but it raised some questions as well.

    Also, what’s a “Kmart” exercise?


    • This reply was modified 7 years, 3 months ago by Ryan.
    • This reply was modified 7 years, 3 months ago by Ryan.

    Hi Ryan,

    Good to see that you are working on setting up your own routines and classes. Let me address your questions:

    – “inside out” block – This is found in the yellow to green belt level, and is actually “chudan uchi uke.”
    – basic 3 – This is taught in the yellow to green belt level, and is actually called “Taikyoku Sandan.”
    – 5 one-steps (only 2 in the videos)… or does this mean do the one-steps 5 times? – It just means to practice 5 one-steps. So, you can do one step #1 five times; or you could alternate between 1 and 2 for five times, for example.
    – A Kmart exercise – I don’t think this is the common name for this, it is usually called stride punching, or alternating punches with leg switching. It is where you have your left leg in front and right leg back (like a left front stance), and throw a reverse punch, you then hop/switch legs to right front stance left arm reverse punch, you keep hopping/switching back and forth. It is a cardio warm up exercise, kind of like doing jumping jacks.

    Hope that helps!


    Thanks Michael, exactly the answers I was looking for.


    Hi, I would like to ask about positioning of hands:
    1) Down Block (white to yellow belt)
    In Technique Guide Mr. Hodge shows that before delivering the block itself I should bring one hand behind my ear and the other almost in the armpit, almost hugging myself, but in Training Guide Mr. Hodge crosses his arms in front of his chest, making a letter X. So which positioning of hands is correct, please?
    2) Snap Kick and Thrust Kick (white to yellow belt)
    In Technique Guide Mr. Hodge tells us that after getting into front stance I should bring my hands up as in a fight, but in Training Guide Mr. Hodge moves around with his arms down, next to his body, somewhat spread, as if to gain stability. Again – which position of hands is correct, please?
    Thank you very much.



    Hi Peter,

    That’s a great observation. Let me do my best to explain.

    1) The demonstration of the down block in the down block lesson and in the white belt kata, Basic 1, is what we would like to see. This is how you should demonstrate the down block throughout your kata(s) and one steps, etc. In the training guide, Sensei Jon uses a slightly different preparation for the down block. There are lots of little variations in how to prepare for a down block.

    2) For practicing your kicks, both of these options can be considered correct. Practicing kicks with your arms down, next to the body, is a way to isolate your focus on the kicking leg and the core. It also helps you to maintain your balance, in the beginning stages of your training. Otherwise, you need to get into a good habit of bringing your hands up after/during a kick. When it comes to sparring and fighting, you don’t want to be caught with your hands down during or at the end of a kick, you will get knocked out. The arms down to the side is just an option for increased balance.

    I hope that is helpful! -Sensei Michael


    Yes, thank you very much.


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