Senshin: The Enlightened Mind

Martial Arts Blog

normrobitza On January - 1 - 2015

924039998Karate: The Art of Empty Hand Fighting by Master Hidetaka Nishiyama is an outstanding reference books. This instructional book is full of pictures explaining the techniques of Shotokan Karate.

The book covers everything from a brief history of the art form to all of the techniques and several self defence combinations. For advanced students, this book will be a great reference tool and has some interesting ideas and philosophies that you may have forgotten or never been taught.

The book covers all hand and leg techniques, blocking techniques and stances and gives several examples on how the techniques are used. It also discusses formal exercises (kata), sparring, and self defence. There are some very interesting self defence combinations especially those from a kneeling position.

1990s-0262_bwHidetaka Nishiyama was a prominent Japanese master of Shotokan karate. He was an internationally recognized instructor, author, and administrator, and helped to establish the Japan Karate Association. Nishiyama was one of the last surviving students of Gichin Funakoshi, founder of Shotokan karate. He was based in the United States of America from 1961 until his death in 2008, and was a pioneer of karate in that country. He was posthumously awarded the rank of 10th dan in karate.

The photos in the book capture a young Master Nishiyama along with Master Teriyuki Okazaki and Master Hirokazu Kanazawa demonstrating the techniques. Their skill is clearly shown in these beautiful images.

The book is said to be the first Shotokan karate instructional text written in English. This may very well be the case. I know that earlier works like Master Funakoshi’s Kyohan were originally written in Japanese then translated at a later date.

With so many books written on Shotokan Karate this is a gem as it was penned by one of Master Funakoshi’s students. I put this title in a very important place in my collection along with my Funakoshi, Nakayama, Okazaki, Kanazawa and Yuguchi books.


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