We break our
training into three areas. Basics which lead to kata, Self
Defense which is the street application, and Sparring which is
the sport training. As a beginner you will start by
learning the basics of punching and kicking. As an
intermediate student you will learn escapes from most common
holds (front and rear bear hugs, side head locks, front and rear
chokes, etc) and you will learn a series of takedowns. As
you become an advanced student you will learn wristlocks,
armlocks, chokes and throwing techniques. You will also
begin to apply your knowledge with less on prearranged training
and more into theory and practical application. By the
time you are a Black Belt you will even learn how to defend
yourself against a club, knife or even a gun situation.
You will also begin even more training on grappling and
controlling attackers on the ground. But while you are
learning the practical self-defense, you will also study kata
(forms) and bunkais (translations to forms). By the time
you get to black belt you will begin to understand how seemingly
simple motions in forms can be blocks, strikes, takedowns or
controlling techniques. You will also enjoy the benefits
of weapons training to help you understand how to take anything
in your environment and use it as a method of self-defense.
You will enjoy the confidence of knowing that you are prepared
but having the self-esteem and awareness to avoid most
A BRIEF UNDERSTANDING OF OUR STYLE OF KARATE CALLED SHOREI GOJU
Many Okinawans traveled to China to learn about the Chinese
methods of fighting, then would return to Okinawa and combine
their new learnings with the existing Okinawan fighting arts.
This method became the basis for many of the styles which exist
today. Any time a person studies more than one style,
becomes skilled enough to teach, and begins to teach a
combination of those styles, he has the dilemma of what name to
call his teachings. To be totally correct, he cannot call
his method by the name of only one of the styles he is
combining, but must create a new name.
Shorei came from Hsing Yi and Kosho Karate Kempo or Shuri-te.
Hsing Yi was a combination of six Chinese arts, three hard or
external and three soft or internal (External : Shaolin-chun,
Chuan Pei, Hung Kun, Internal: Chauan-fa, Tai-chi-chuan, Pa-Kua).
Kosho Karate Kempo or Shuri-te was the existing Okinawan art
taught by Choki Motobu.
Goju Ryu came from two Chinese systems, Shaolin Chuan (hard) and
Pakua Change (soft) taught by Chojun Miyagi.
Robert A. Trias learned Shuri-te and later Goju Ryu. In
1946 he incorporated some of the Goju Ryu katas into Shuri-te,
which was the beginning of our system as we know it today.
Grandmaster Trias appointed Herb Johnson as Style Head of Shorei
Goju Ryu in 1979,
Most of our basics can be traced to three different origins.
One such origin, the study of basic science (learning how to
apply the maximum number of muscles and the maximum body weight
into each technique), enables us to use the strength of our
entire body against the weaknesses of our opponents.
The second origin is a period in China when monks studied animal
movements and tried to duplicate these movements into the human
being so he could strike the acupuncture points used in Chinese
medicine to attack the energy or “Chi”. The third origin
was the period in Okinawa when all weapons had been confiscated,
forcing Okinawans to use their hands and feet as their knives,
spears and clubs.
Our system represents the ancient theory of “No Limitations” of
knowledge or technique. Many of today’s styles are very
limiting. For example, one style has only 4 hand strikes
and 4 kicks, which are considered by one man to be the very best
of all techniques. Another style has 70% kicking with very
few hand strikes and was created as a sport eventually to be
used in the Olympics. In these systems and many others it
is considered offensive to do anything which is not taught in
Our style, on the other hand, contains every type of strike,
block, kick, wrist lock, arm lock, arm bar, sweep, takedown or
pressure point which can be used, giving the student the option
of choosing which best fits his physique, personality, and
situation. The style of Shorei Goju Ryu is so complete
that it has something for everyone. One does not have to
be tall and thin or short and stocky or a top athlete to study
this system; it is adaptable to every size and personality.
Herb Johnson, Style Head
Family Karate Academy USA
8758 Crawfordsville Rd.
Indianapolis, IN 46234
(317) 297-KARATE / (317) 297-5272
Email us at -
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