So, Manji Uke. It’s just a double block combining a Gedan Barai Uke (lower level sweeping block) and Age Uke (upper level rising block), right? Not in my Dojo it isn’t.
Last night the Sempai at my Dojo took us thorough a number of Kata, starting with the Heians and progressing on up through to the ones I am currently working on for my Nidan testing… and beyond. Not only are these Sempai so well versed in all the Kata, they understand them.
They took something like the Manji Uke last night and demonstrated it…and not in a one-dimensional manner. They did so in a way that incites you to think about a move. This single technique from one of the 26 Shotokan Kata became a multidimensional revelation of what karate is truly about: a lifelong study of a fascinating and never-ending Art of both physical and inner discovery.