“Treasured for centuries by karate’s top masters, Bubishi is a classic Chinese work on philosophy, strategy, medicine and technique as they relate to the martial arts. Referred to as “the bible of karate” by the famous master Chojun Miyagi, for hundreds of years the Bubishi was a secret text passed from master to student in China and later in Okinawa. No other classic work has had as dramatic an impact on the shaping and development of karate.” Google Books
Of course, it is thought that many of our techniques did indeed come from China and was influenced by a number of martial arts, and what I notice quite often when I look at this text is how many of the original techniques were performed with an open hand.
I then wonder why we don’t see many of these in the Dojo anymore. My personal preference is to have my lead hand open when I’m in a Kumite position because I think it gives me more striking and defense options, and I also feel like I can generate more speed. When I am in close, in a hand-to-hand combat situation, I may have both hands open.
Have we gotten away from the open hand in the Dojo for safety reasons when sparring? Have we established that the closed fist is a better striking alternative?
Food for thought as I throw a few Haishu-uchi, Hiraken, Shuto and Haito at the Makiwara this week…