Real karate training will nearly always contain several essential elements. One of the primary elements is variety of conditioning and training methods to strengthen the individual and his body weapons. Perhaps the most physically demanding portion of the arts, strength, conditioning and attribute training, are frequently the first things to disappear when attempting to appeal to the masses for financial gain. The strength, stamina, power, pain tolerance, and courage gained through strengthening and conditioning one's body and weapons separate the karate hobbyist from the real martial artist. In Seidokan, at least if we follow the master’s examples, makiwara, weight training, both modern and with a variety of traditional implements, and overall body conditioning are vital to effective karate. Besides the makiwara, there are numerous training implements unique to Okinawan karate:
These are by no means inclusive of all the possible training methods, but are indicative of the importance of additional exercise beyond the aerobic punching and kicking of modern ‘Americanized’ versions of the true Okinawan art.
The Tetsu-getta or iron sandals, for leg strength and kicking. (Much better for foot strength than modern ankle weights. The foot actually must grip the sandal, and the weight is at the far extremity of the limb, adding to the difficulty of the device. Because of this, fast kicking, which would be dangerous to the joints if using ankle weights, is not possible, and therefore the use of the tetsu-getta is preferred to the modern devices.)
Sashi, hand held weights used during blocking and striking practice. (A pair of 10 pound dumb-bells serve the same purpose.)
Nigiri Game, or stone jars filled with sand or water. (Here I am substituting one gallon pickle jars for the traditional pottery version.)
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