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Karate Fighting Techniques: The Complete Kumite Hardcover – April 9, 2004


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About the Author


HIROKAZU KANAZAWA, president of Shotokan Karate-do International Federation, carries on the spirit and techniques of his teacher, Gichin Funakoshi. Born in 1931 in Iwate prefecture, Japan, Mr. Kanazawa began practicing karate as a student at Takushoku University and, after graduation, became an instructor for the Japan Karate Association. He has earned many titles in competition, winning first place in kumite at the first Japan Karate Championship in 1957, and taking top honors in both kumite and kata the following year at the second Japan Karate Championship. His long career as a chief instructor dates back to 1960, when he was invited to teach in Hawaii. He has also taught elsewhere in the United States and throughout Europe. In 1979, he founded Shotokan Karate-do International Federation, which now has branches in over 90 countries. Mr. Kanazawa is the author of Karate-My Life and several books in Japanese on karate.

RICHARD BERGER was born in Rochester, New York, in 1963 and began training in Shotokan karate in 1982 while attending university in Southern California. He moved to Tokyo in 1990 and has been training at SKIF headquarters since 1993.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 200 pages
  • Publisher: Kodansha USA (April 9, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 4770028725
  • ISBN-13: 978-4770028723
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 0.8 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,776,012 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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3 star
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See all 15 customer reviews
I am only 1/3rd of the way through the book, and I am impressed at what I have read so far.
Russ
It includes what many karate books leave out: good photos, both in terms of the techniques themselves (as demonstrated by Kanazawa) and various poses.
Jose E Muller
And if you want a general overview of self defense techniques applicable to civilian environments, check out the Tegner books.
Joseph C. McDaniel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jose E Muller on May 5, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book details and organizes kumite from basic to advance practice. It includes what many karate books leave out: good photos, both in terms of the techniques themselves (as demonstrated by Kanazawa) and various poses.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Dr. L. J. Irving on August 25, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This is a great book - if you train with SKI.

I used to train with SKI (GB), and i can happily say that this book would be a great help for young, developing Karateka, working through their kyu grades.

As the previous two reviewers noted, the book it beautifully photographed, in the traditional simple, but extremely effective style used by Nakayama in his 'Best Karate' series (by far the best karate series out there). Many of the scenarios are photographed from different angles so that you can see just what is happening to the obscured hand, or the position of a neck strike more easily.

Continuing in my positive vein, the book has some wonderful biographical information, and great accompanying photos. Also is a good section on the correct meaning of the word 'Oss' and the folding of a Dogi.

I now, however, train with JKA (NZ), which diminishes the books appeal. I understand the concept behind the SKI syllabus, the grading Kumite scenarios depicted have the objective of teaching the karateka both a variety of techniques and to teach them to move in ways that are hard to teach otherwise. It just seems a little inapplicable to JKA training, since this is not the focus of our gradings. Likewise, many of these scenario's are unlikely to occur in Jiyu (free) kumite. Who of us has seen someone counter with Mae-tobigeri?! Don't get me wrong, these techniques shown would (and do) make great training exercises in the dojo, but many of them aren't gonna make it beyond that. I guess I was looking for a book more similar to Keinosuke Enoeda's 'Free fighting techniques' although perhaps more advanced than Enoeda's text (which was written to teach the first wave of UK and european karateka to fight in the 1960's, but we've (hopefully) progressed since then!).

All in all, it's a good book, filling a gap that has required filling for a good wee while, but it ain't gonna help you win too many tournaments!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By K.H. on August 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Hirokazu Kanazawa, President of Shotokan Karate-do International Federation, has complied an outstanding book that balances history and tradition with the different forms of kumite. This book is not the normal primer. If one does not know at least the basic punches and kicks, do not get this book as a novice guide to learning karate. Kanazawa's approach assumes the person has these basic techniques down. If you are one of those people, still buy the book only if you plan on learning karate in the future when the opportunity arises.

In addition, while this book is primarily a Shotokan text, he does review the major Okinawa/Japanese karate styles, goes over terminology, and a particularly nice paragraph on p. 19 on the "verbal greeting `Oss'" The photos are of high quality, which is important in a text that demonstrates many sparring steps via pictures. The explanations are thorough enough to get the point a cross, but not unnecessarily tiresome and too detailed to loose the reader or make the book overly cumbersome.

A nice companion martial texts to a martial artist's library.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on January 10, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is the definitive book for Kanzawa ryu stylists, you should need no urging to buy it immediately.

If you have not trained with Kanazawa much of the detail will be invisible - this is a reference book for those who have been taught the details of the movements. But it may encourage other Shotokan stylists to find out more, and that is a good thing; this man has got something useful to offer; believe me, he really does.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on December 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Excellent book, well written and there is a rich content about kumite techniques. The fighting techniques are well documented and easy to understand. It is a basic book for one that want learn karate. The author is an expert in this noble martial art and was able to demonstrate the essence of karate, not only fighting techniques, but the real soul of karate. I recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joseph J. Truncale TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 23, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is a book for new and experienced karate students. However, without a background in some karate basics, a new student will not get much out of this text. The drills and variations of different approaches to sparring will be of value for both students and instructors. This is a comprehensive book on the formal aspects of karate and the drills will help if you are entering karate contest. I question the value of many of the drills for learning how to actually defend yourself on the street. Nevertheless, it is a good text to use in combination with actual hands-on training under a competent Japanese karate style instructor.

Rating: 4 stars. Joseph J. Truncale (Shotokan Karate Self-Defense Techniques: Practical Combat Karate for the street)
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is a primer, nothing short of it - it provides excellent detail about Kihon-Ippon kumite, Sanbon kumite, Jiyu-ippon kumite, etc - all standard parts of the SKI training program! Additionally, there's a lot of guidance about how to prepare yourself for tournament or match kumite, via several examples of actual attacks and defence/counter-attack steps. The best book on the subject, IMO!
One drawback I found was - I regularly study Soke Kanazawa's Kata book in detail, and I found that that book was much more rigourous about naming each step (the stance, the attack/block, etc) - in this book, some of the steps remain un-named, so you wonder, for example, in Sanbon Kumite 3, whether the stance is a Kokutsu or a Zenkutsu, and need to rely on the photograph to draw your conclusion. However, the book is very detailed in its photographs of each and every step, with several supplementary photographs to show different angles of the same step - so no complaints!
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