At my karate club people call me Sensei, and my friends just call me Richard.
Daily karate vblog#22: traditional karate vs sports karate = no contest!
Enjoy, it's the big One! Karate vblog#22: traditional karate vs sports karate = no contest!
Transcript and extra's below!
Hey everybody it's Richard Mosdell and it's my
daily vblog#22, just going to get the camera set-up here, it's late at night, been traveling
a lot today.
Met some fantastic other pro karate instructors so let me just get the camera set.
I have a really interesting talk, um and less of a talk actually, I want to throw out some
ideas and I want to see how you guys react to them.
And uh traditional karate versus sports karate, the debate has been going on forever.
And I'll try to make this short and sweet. And I'm going to put something here.
In this hand I have the World Karate Federation rule book, ok, this is my left hand.
In my right hand I have an envelope with more than 10, 12, maybe 14 different karate style
certificates that I have earned over the years, and in this envelope here there are certificates
from karate organizations that you've never heard of um all the way to ones that are right
to the centre of the Japanese karate world that if I was to take them out I could teach
at the um Japan Karatedo Federation headquarters um if they ever wanted someone who looked
like me to teach there.
So there is this.
Now here's one thing though, all of these certificates I have earned, and I'm very proud
of them, and anyone should be proud of something they took time to learn something and got a result for
it, if I kind of think about this one, none of them really prepared me for being extremely successful
in this rule system.
But you might be thinking "Your nuts right, that doesn't make any sense!"
But it kind of does.
The way the rule system is now, to be really successful in this system, especially kumite
in sparring, this would almost hold me back.
You're saying "That doesn't make any sense!"
Well, there's a story right, there's our story of karate, so let's look at the story of karate.
I'm going to pick up the camera, over here, the birth of WUKO.
So that is the Nippon Budokan at the first World Championships, at that is where karate
in the Olympics is going to be in 2020.
Ok, this is around 1970.
Karate organizations of different styles came together to have a unified rule system so
they could interact.
That's our story.
Let's not forget that part.
There was first the World Union Karate Organization, the world championships, they (style instructors)
went around the world.
Again in the 1990s, it changed to the WKF, to the World Karate Federation and the rules
started to become more sophisticated.
And then you have the evolution of the world karate competition.
This means the WKF rule system is in itself an open karate style, open as in anybody can
learn how to do it.
That got us International Committee recognition, which then led us on the road to to getting
all these different continental acceptances into different games, right, to the Olympic
project, to Olympic were on the way, to K is the Symbol, you've all seen that stuff,
And now we are an Olympic sport.
And here is what I'm thinking about, and I'm not some sort of amazing karate thought leader,
what I'm thinking about is, and it's a question that I'd love to get some feedback and comments
from karate leaders out there, that in this coffee cup of which I made, is coffee let's
just say, coffee A, and in this coffee cup, coffee B, is a different type of coffee.
Both coffee can be delivered to me, and I can enjoy this service because it's safe ok,
and it has been delivered to me in a competent manner.
Ok, I can drink this coffee, I'm ok, and the container it's in and how it's delivered in
But these 2 types of coffee here are completely different.
And it's up to me, the marketplace, the person in the market to decide the A or B and which
makes sense to me.
And I kind of think of that like in karate competition.
That to be able to be successful in this rule system, we should be able to let in anybody
who wants to do really well in it.
I am totally part of that traditional karate world where if certificate A-B-C from so-
and-so, if that has value to me or it has value to you, your certificates have value
to you, fantastic and I think that's wonderful.
And if a different certificate has value to somebody else, that really good for them.
And we all know everyone will go, "well, these ones are a little bit more, or these one's are
a little bit less" or whatever, it doesn't matter because when it comes to us interacting
together, and we can be friends and all sorts of stuff, when it comes to competition, this
can unite us!
And then there can be fun, recreation, development type of competition, and there can be really
So if somebody out there says "I really want to create something like a soccer academy
or a tennis academy where I can excel as far as possible with as many people as I want
or as I can or as I can attract", and the same thing can happen in karate I think we should
support them, as long as they are safe and competent.
Then they prove themselves in that system.
Because with the other certificates, there are certificates in this folder that definitely was interesting
and I'm glad that I did it, but did not make me safe and competent in the WKF rule system.
What does that mean to the karate brand?
Karate brand is so big now, it's so wide, it's only what it means to you.
And what is success in a club?
That's up to you.
Is it lots of members?
Is it competitive success?
Is it financial success?
Is it how you interact with other people success? If we're going to come together to make karate
better for everybody, style association is style, focus on anything you want in that.
But if anybody wants to excel in sports-karate competition, especially to put, have a chance
to take their countries flag and put it on their chest and represent their country in
this rule system, my thinking right now, and I'd love to hear your comments, is we should
let anybody who wants to succeed and excel in that, and anybody who has, make
a positive space for kids or adults, we should back them 100%!
And let's be friends with them.
Just as much as we want to be friends with anybody who has x-y-z style certificate.
I think when the different style organizations came together to make (multi) style groups,
it was maybe at first important that the next people we let in later on, the 2nd, 3rd, 4th
generation, were maybe from those same style groups because it would be easy to interact
with them, you know.
But now there has been an evolution, especially in the rules that anybody should have a shot.
It's just a thought to think about, and I'd love to hear your comments.
Again, I'm not saying all this stuff should be written down in stone.
I also don't think we should go out and bash other people.
Let me leave you with one last thought.
When we opened Kenzen Sports Karate, we have a national team coach, myself who's trained
in Japan for 10 years at the centre of the Tokyo world, and we would explain that to
people and say "national coach, 5th degree black belt, we've been this, we've been that"
and the parents would go "yeah, yeah, whatever, you're 2 minutes from my house, you make my
kid smile, and it looks like they're working out and they're tired when they get home,
Let's remember that, we can't take ourselves to seriously, we can't be too romantic, and
we definitely don't want to be karate snobs.
Let's let everybody in the sandbox.
That's my thought.
I'm Richard Mosdell, thanks a lot for watching my daily karate vblog#22, and tomorrow, I'm
going to kick and punch some stuff!
Have a great night, everybody!
To be honest, having a kata list could help maintain similar performance stands, but for kumite, how instructor's develop their training systems to excel in the WKF rules is key. Criteria on better understanding of scoring techniques could look like could come from the WKF, but until coaches can figure it out.
I think how any type of karate can survive if the instructor delivers a good instruction service that cares about the students and parents because most kids join the karate club near their house, meaning style or sport doesn't matter. An instructor with amazing karate lineage can offer a horrible instruction service. The market should decide as long as the instructor is safe and competent.
Government-sanctioned sport organizations (state, provincial, national) just need a simple set of criteria that an instructor will provide safe and competent karate - like a coffee shop providing safe and competent coffee - and then everyone can be allowed in. The taste and quality of the coffee is up to the market to decide. If some 20yr wants to start a sports-karate club specifically to match the WKF rules, and their physical-technical-tactical teaching is based in this system, they do not need a dan rank. No dan ranks are equal anymore. High dan ranks can teach poorly to kids, it's happening right now in Japan and everywhere else. Let the person prove themselves, just like we let people prove themselves with their coffee shops.
Anyone in a traditional club shouldn't feel threatened, because no one is taking anything away from them that they have access to. I'm just suggesting to let everyone in. The market will decide what they want to do, and the clubs that want to focus on the WKF rules, like soccer and ice hockey clubs where coaches develop themselves personally to be great at coaching for these systems, we could create some great new momentum.