The Role of Uke

In partner training, there are two people involved. There is a person working on the technical side of the form, and there is an attacker. This is a misunderstood thing in a lot of individuals martial arts practice. They think of the attacker as a wooden training dummy, Something to have a technique done to […]

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A Rationale For Fighting Back

Originally Posted on January 17, 2017 by Karri It can be difficult to decide whether to take defensive action against someone violating your boundaries, like personal space, inappropriate intimate contact or teasing gone too far. This is especially true if the offender is a friend or family member. But when given a wide enough perspective, […]

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What’s Your Plan?

Originally Posted on August 18, 2016 by Karri In his book Meditations on Violence, Rory Miller states that the experienced martial artists who are most successful at surviving a sudden, surprise attack do so with a simple plan. In the fractions of a second, you don’t have time to remember a complex series of moves, […]

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The Spirit of Competition.

Originally Posted on November 11, 2015 by Karri For the longest time, I held the belief that competition in martial arts was unsafe, and ultimately counter to the guiding principles we engender. I believed that deliberately putting yourself in harms way, and looking for a fight was reckless and only served to fuel the ego. […]

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The Trouble With Being Big and Strong

Originally Posted on October 8, 2015 by Karri I have a student, who at the age of sixteen is already stronger than I am. He lifts daily, plays football, lacrosse and now trains in martial arts. To top it off, he is extraordinarily athletic. His reflexes, pain response and mobility are off the charts. In […]

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I am not the story.

Posted on January 29, 2015 by Karri A few months ago I had the pleasure of training with Dan Harden. One of the things that I found most impressive was his attitude towards the material he was teaching. “I’m not the guy. Don’t make me the face for this stuff. I’m not making any if […]

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Something to prove.

Originally Posted on June 29, 2013 by Karri There is something especially difficult about turning down a challenge to prove yourself as a martial artist. Whether it’s because you want to put to bed any doubts about your skill, or someone is just talking crap about your system/dojo, the compulsion to go toe to toe […]

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The Problem of Pain.

Originally Posted on March 14, 2013 by Karri Martial artists often deal with pain. It’s part of the human experience, but we learn to think of it differently than others. Probably just from repeated exposure. For most of us there are two very different things going on at the same time. First is the nerve […]

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A nod to tradition.

Originally Posted on February 22, 2012 by Karri There seems to be a lot of misconceptions about the purpose of rei, or bowing at the beginning and end of our martial arts practice. I’ve heard students confuse it with worship, prayer or showing subservience to the instructor. Depending on the cultural and historical background you […]

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Tiny Revelations.

Originally Posted on June 6, 2011 by Karri Martial arts is a fascination of mine. Like most men, it has been since I was a boy. I dreamed of becoming Bruce Lee, a Ninja Turtle, a Samurai, Mr. Miyagi and all manner of other heroes from pop culture. I never thought though that I would […]

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