Grace Martial Arts Fellowship Newsletters 1999-1

Grace Martial Arts Fellowship began in 1990, went online with a website in 1995 and began publishing newsletters to the Christian martial arts community in 1998.

Because of the quality of information found in those early newsletter articles and the fact they are no longer available online, we’ve decided to re-publish many of them in the coming weeks and months. Our hope is that a new generation of Christian martial artists will be blessed by the wisdom of those who were on the narrow path before them.

GMAF NEWSLETTER

JANUARY 1999

Welcome to the first GMAF Newsletter of 1999! We pray it will encourage you in your Martial Arts and Outreach for Christ.

THOUGHTS FROM THE MASTER

“And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.” Jesus Christ

“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God.” The Apostle Paul

TRAINING TIPS

Master Kanei Uechi developed a series of warm-up exercises to help his students prepare for the rigors of training in Uechi-ryu Karate. He taught that the purpose of the exercises was to help them limber and stretch, strengthen their bodies, develop coordination and reflexes, and learn beginning self- defense techniques. Many of the exercises are done using dynamic tension and many repetitions.

Uechi-ryu has more than 20 warm-up exercises. We introduced 10 last month. The next 11 exercises will develop blocking, striking and kicking abilities.

1. Side Kick

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance with hands in sparring position
  • Pivot slightly to the right and perform a middle outside block with your right arm
  • Perform a strong right leg side snap kick at the point the block is complete. Do not throw your hip into the kick. Turn your heel outward. Speed is the issue in this drill. Bring your right leg back to right Sanchin position quickly.
  • Pivot to the left and perform a middle outside block with your left arm
  • Perform a strong left leg side snap kick at the point the block is complete. Bring your left leg back to right Sanchin position quickly.
  • Repeat four times in right Sanchin stance
  • Switch to left Sanchin stance and do five repetitions
  • Maintain strong balance during this exercise
  • The side-kick drill will develop your ability to pivot, block and kick quickly, in addition to basic coordination, timing and strength

2. Front Kick

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance with hands in sparring position
  • Perform a middle outside block with your right arm
  • Perform a strong front snap kick with your right leg at the point the block is complete. Bring your right leg back to right Sanchin position quickly.
  • Block with left arm and kick with left leg
  • Repeat four times in right Sanchin stance
  • Switch to left Sanchin stance and do five repetitions

3. Round House Punch

  • Stand in strong right Sanchin stance
  • Perform strong middle outside block with left arm
  • Throw strong right roundhouse hook punch at the point the block is complete
  • Block with right arm and punch with left arm
  • Keep shoulders down and minimize movement. Keep head stablized. Pull in slightly with blocking arm as you punch to simulate pulling opponent into your punch
  • Repeat ten times

4. Block/Punch Series 1

  • Stand in strong left Sanchin stance with arms in sparring position. Left hand stays in an open, palm-out position during entire exercise
  • Move your right fist to a point under your left elbow
  • Move your right arm upward strongly to a point in line with your forehead (high block)
  • Move your right arm down to a ready position with fist at side and punch forward
    • Move your right fist to a point over and inside of your left arm and block outward (outside block)
    • Move your right arm to a ready position with fist at side and punch forward
    • Complete ten repetitions
    • Change to left Sanchin stance and perform ten block/punch repetitions with left arm

5. Block/Punch Series 2

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance with arms in sparring position
  • Perform strong middle outside block with right arm
  • Perform strong middle forward punch with left arm at point block is complete
  • Pull in slightly with right arm as you punch with left arm
  • Peform palm-heel inside block with right arm while pulling left arm back to ready position
  • Perform strong middle forward punch with left arm and pull in with right arm
  • Complete ten repetitions
  • Change to left Sanchin stance and perform ten repetitions blocking with left arm and punching with right arm

6. Block/Punch Series 3

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance with arms in sparring position
  • Perform right arm middle outside block
  • Perform strong left arm knife-hand strike at neck level at point block is complete
  • Close left hand into fist and move it toward chest, then outward in back fist at nose level
  • Move left fist back to side ready position and punch forward with a one-knuckle fist
  • Complete ten repetitions
  • Change to left Sanchin stance and do ten repetitions with left arm blocks and right hand strikes and punches

7. Turn/Block/Kick

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance with arms in sparring position
  • Step to right side while blocking middle outside with left arm
  • Complete block and perform right front snap kick. Return to right Sanchin stance.
  • Turn 180 degrees into left Sanchin stance and block middle outside with right arm
  • Complete block and perform left front snap kick. Return to left Sanchin stance.
  • Turn 180 degrees into right Sanchin stance and block middle outside with left arm
  • Perform five repetitions of exercise
  • Move into left Sanchin stance
  • Step to left side while blocking middle outside with right arm
  • Complete block and perform left front snap kick. Return to left Sanchin stance.
  • Continue drill as in first part, except kick with back leg instead of front leg

8. Turn/Block/Punch

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance
  • Step to right side while blocking middle outside with left arm
  • Complete block and perform right front one-knuckle punch. Hold for split second, then return to Sanchin arm position
  • Block with right arm and punch with left fist
  • Turn 180 degrees into left Sanchin stance and block middle outside with right arm
  • Block with left arm and punch forward middle with right arm
  • Step to left and turn 180 degrees
  • Repeat the exercise ten times
  • This will develop arm and leg coordination and strong blocks and punches
  • Do not bounce as you move from position to position. Keep shoulders down.
  • Pull blocking arm in slightly as you punch. Do not throw shoulders into punch.

9. Step-Thrust

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance
  • Pull arms towards your body and bring together as you slide forward into a right Sanchin stance
  • Thrust hands outward toward opponent’s eyes as you complete sliding step
  • Slide backward into right Sanchin stance while pulling hands back to your body
  • Repeat exercise 20 times

10. Wrist Block

  • Stand in right Sanchin stance with hands in Sanchin position, but with thumbs tucked in and hands in vertical position
  • Point fingers downward and pull wrists upward to eye level
  • Pull wrists downward to waist level with fingers pointing up
  • Pull wrists apart to the outside with fingers pointing inward
  • Pull wrists together while fingers point outward
  • Repeat ten times
  • Move to left Sanchin stance with arms in Sanchin position
  • Move wrists to left then right while hands point in opposite direction and follow
  • Flick fingers to the opposite direction at the completion of eachmovement
  • This exercise is known as the “fishtail”
  • Repeat 20 times

11. Deep Breathing

  • Stand with feet together and hands hanging at side
  • Raise hands slowly while inhaling deeply
  • Lower hands slowly while exhaling deeply
  • Repeat ten times

MARTIAL ARTS AND STYLES

The Sword Arts of Japan are renowned for speed and power, peacefulness and beauty. They are also known for a spirit of calmness and inner peace. The primary arts are Kenjutsu, Kendo, Iaijutsu, Iaido, Batto-jutsu and Batto- do. They all had their birth with the Samurai (warrior class in feudal Japan).

Samurai warriors trained in Kenjutsu (sword art) to prepare them to use their katana (long sword) in battle. Kenjutsu began in Japan more than 1,000 years ago. Kenjutsu was an offensive weapons system that concentrated on fighting with the sword unsheathed. It emphasized cuts, thrusts and parries, similar to European fencing. Kenjutsu had clear target areas and practioners took pride in being able to wound an opponent in those areas. Practioners of Kenjutsu considered it unworthy to wound an opponent in a non-target area. Kenjutsu was outlawed in Japan in 1876.

Modern Kendo (way of the sword) developed from Kenjutsu. Kendoka fight each other with a bamboo sword (shinai). Some kendoka practice with a wooden sword (bokken). They wear armor to protect themselves from blows from the bamboo swords. The armor includes a waist and groin protector, breastplate, facemask, headband and gloves. Target areas include the head, side of the body, throat and wrists, which the armor protect. Kendo became popular in Japan after Kenjutsu was outlawed.

Iaijutsu (sword drawing art) is a more defensive sword art than Kenjutsu. Iaijutsu emphasized quick, fluid movements. Drawing of the sword was as important as striking an opponent with the sword. It was used in real combat situations beginning in the mid-16th century. “Pure Heart” and “Straight Mind” were primary goals of Iaijutsu. Winning a fight was important, but more important was stopping the fight before it began. This came from developing a mind and spirit that won the battle before it began. It meant ridding oneself of anger, fear, hatred, jealousy and selfishness. The highest principle of Iaijutsu was to win without having to fight.

“Kachi wa saya no naka ni ari.” (“Victory comes while the sword is in the scabbard.”) Eishin-Ryu Iaijutsu

Iaido (sword drawing way) is the defensive art of an Iaidoka drawing the sword from the scabbard quickly (nukitsuke), the ceremonial killing of an imagined opponent with one cut of the blade (kirioroshi), removing blood from the sword (chiburi), and returning the sword to the scabbard (noto). This is done while in a state of calmness and inner peace. The goal is a serene mind at all times. The motto of one Iaido system is:

“Iai does not enable one to kill people, it is not meant for taking lives. It is expressly for the purpose of putting one’s own life on a peaceful course.” Eishin-Ryu Iaido

Iaidoka train with three types of swords: bokken (wooden sword), iaito (practice sword), and shinken (live sword).

Batto-do and Batto-jutsu are sword drawing arts similar to Iaido and Iaijutsu. The name means “sword drawing art.” Most schools practice cutting rolled straw targets. They also practice one and two-person forms. Batto-do emphasizes defeating an opponent through quickness in unsheathing the blade.

All forms of Japanese Sword Arts include a detailed etiquette (reishiki) and moral code of conduct (bushido). The purpose is to instill discipline in the sword practioner. Its purpose is “learning to sense what is correct, and developing an aptitude for doing it.”

Taking God’s Grace to the World!

[Join our Grace Martial Arts Facebook Community!]

Grace Martial Arts © 1990 – 2018

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s