Advanced Okinawan Kempo Karate : How To Block a Punch in Kempo Karate
We’re back in our training stance. An inward
block also can be used as a strike. This one starts back here, for the basics. You want
to twist your hand outward and you want it to come across your center line. Elbow down.
You want to deflect it. You’ll want to block with the meaty part of your arm. You never
want to block with the lower part of your arm. You want to block down here close to
the joint. As this one comes out and blocks, the other one goes straight back. That’s the
inward block. The outward block goes in the opposite direction. From here, you want to
start low. Go across your center line then you want it to rotate outwards. You want the
fist to be even with the shoulder. Starting down here, then you pull back. As you can
see, as I’m blocking, don’t think of it as a block, but think of it as a grab. I’m grabbing
with the arm here and you can see what I may be doing to his arm. If you have your thumb
out here, you can activate pressure points, which I will talk about in a later topic.
That’s an outward block. You also have a downward block. Now the downward blocks, they will
tell you in the dojo, are good for blocking a kick. Not necessarily. If someone has combat
boots on and my arms are real skinny, I’m going to hurt my arm. However, it can be used
as a strike as well. From here you will want to start with your arm across the body once
again crossing the center line. You’ll want it to come straight down. You don’t want it
to stop here, you’ll want it to go past the center line. You’re sweeping. The Japanese
name is gedan barai, which means low sweep. Bring it up. Pull the other hand back in the
chamber as you come across. Bringing it up with both hands moving simultaneously. After
years and years of training like this, your hands will start to move simultaneously when
you are sparring and will help when you are trying to apply grappling or joint locks along
with punching and kicking. That’s the gedan barai, the downward block. You also have Shoto
block or Shotokai, the sword-hand block. From here, the hand comes up like a karate chop.
This hand points straight ahead because, once again, you are grabbing. The other hand is
at the side of your neck. You can also block punches this way. This is a faster block.
You can actually block punches using this block, but it is also a great strike for the
side of the neck, which I’ll talk about later when I go back to strikes.