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Frequently Asked Questions


What is Karate?

Karate is a martial art developed in the Ryukyu Kingdom. It developed from the indigenous Ryukyuan martial arts (called Te, "hand") under the influence of Chinese martial arts, particularly Fujian White Crane.


Karate is predominantly a striking art using punching, kicking, knee strikes, elbow strikes, and open-hand techniques such as knife-hands, spear-hands, and palm-heel strikes. A karate practitioner is called a karate-ka.


What is Sankukai?

Sankukai karate was founded in 1971 in Paris by Doshu (Founder) Yoshinau Nanbu (13th February 1943 - 28th April 2020)

Sankukai descends from the Shito-Ryu Karate style and focuses on "Tenshin" or Evasion techniques, helping students to avoid direct confrontation with their opponents.

Sankukai is particularly suited to self defence and is a practical "Short Stance" style.


What should I wear?

Karate is traditionally practiced  barefoot, wearing a karate-gi or gi. 

Sensei John can supply uniform when you are ready but for your first class, sportswear such as tracksuit trousers or shorts and a t-shirt are best.


What age is your class for?

My class is for all ages, with no upper limit. 

Very young children tend to find karate difficult so a minimum age of 8 years old is preferable.


Will there be contact?

Sparring and paired training drills are a common part of Karate training,

If you do not want to participate in sparring or paired exercises then please let me know before attending.


Is it a mixed class?

Yes. Men, Women, adults and children can all train together in my class.

If you do not want to be placed in a mixed pair then please let me know so that I can accommodate your wishes.


What is a grading?

A grading is a practical exam in which you are invited to perform your grading syllabus in front of your Instructor (sometimes additional instructors forming a grading committee) If you are able to demonstrate that you have learned your syllabus to the required standard then you will be promoted to a higher "Grade" denoted by a differently coloured belt.


What do the coloured belts mean?

In Karate, coloured belts display your rank in the art. 

Different styles and clubs may have a different progression of belts but Sankukai Maidstone's belt progression is: White, Yellow, Orange, Green, Blue, Purple, Brown, Brown, Brown, Black.

The founder of Sankukai, Doshu Yoshinao Nanbu wore a Red Belt.


Do I have to compete in competition?

Sankukai Karate Maidstone is affiliated with the English Karate Organisation who run an open Karate Competition each year. As a member of the club you can represent the club at competition but this is not compulsory. 

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