Karate Styles - An Introduction

Traditional Karate has solid roots in doctrine and syllabus going back hundreds of years and in some cases has changed little in key aspects over time.

In the UK the traditional styles are known as 'the big four'. They are Goju-Ryu , Shito-ryu, Shotokan and Wado-ryu.

The syllabus you learn is integral to a cohesive system that has been a way of life for a long time. The Masters refine the system adding their input only once having reached the highest levels of the style. Refine is the key word, rather than radically adapt physical aspects from a wide range of martial arts for a specific purpose, as often found in 'modern' Karate styles.

The result is the potential to go much further with the mind to seek perfection in a physical and mental state that defines a way of life.

Most Karate in the UK is traditional and the chances are you are training in a traditional school. Associations vary in their requirement for clubs to adhere to strict syllabus'. Following  a traditional path can, after years of dedication, bring great personal development and a deep and permanent sense of continuity and belonging to an art understood and shared worldwide.

There is no absolute right or wrong way to go. It is a matter of your choice and what works for you. You'll encounter some fiercely divided opinion on 'sport' versus ' traditional' - here we hope to avoid that and simply outline information about the styles.

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