Kenshikai Shorin Ryu
Because, why not? You do not always have the opportunity to enjoy 4 hours of great Karate in less than 24 hours in two styles that are not yours, right?
Still sore from yesterday's Ashihara training I headed to join an International Kenshikai class. I saw one of their kids classes in one of their 20 dojos in Shanghai so I got myself invited to one of their trainings.
Believe it or not the training was exactly the same I did yesterday in Ashihara! How to tai sabaki out of a gedan mawashi geri and reposition yourself to counter with another low kick.
Ashihara is a Kyokushin offshot and Shorin Ryu a Kyokushin "father" but I wasn't expecting the two to be so similar, at least during normal class.
Other than body reposition the style is focused on natural breathing, speed and hitting on specific points, not using raw power, to overcome an attacker. Quite revealing.
As a Shotokan "father" (even if Funakoshi Sensei never trained or taught Shotokan Karate, do not forget) I felt a bit a disconection between the two. In my previous Shorin Ryu experience (exactly one other class) I could feel a travel back to the roots, but today I felt a travel back to the roots of Kyokushin, what is odd.
Well, what is odder is that all Karate styles I have tried have many things in common. You can feel that they are the same thing, just trained different. Except one: Shotokan.
Shotokan is the odd son of Okinawan Karate, and specially odd if you consider that it is the most spread Karate style.
I guess they teach really good marketing at Waseda University...
Now, if you want to know, I shall show you some pics of my previous experience with Kenshikai, but this time in Suzhou city. I learnt today that the Kenshikai split a few years ago between the Okinawan side and the Chinese side, which became the International Kenshikai.
The Okinawan one felt more connected to Shotokan, somehow. Maybe because we did some Tekki/Naihanchi and Heian/Pinan. Today we did no kata. Or kumite. Odd too...
Anyway, thank you everyone for sharing your training time with me. I really appreciate your dedication and your warm welcome.
I feel really lucky to be able to make Karate friends from every style and country.
PS: not badmouthing Shotokan, just writing my thoughts. Shotokan is still my base training and I owe all I have to Shotokan training.