View Full Version : Shorinji blocking vs karate blocking.

Benjamin Peters
5th January 2003, 23:36
Gassho - Happy new year to you all.

With only a cursory knowledge of shorinji-kempo, from the old BBC documentary, can anyone explain the advantages of practicing blocking/parrying as it is in shorinji-kempo? From what I can see it is a slap and parrying movement unlinke any system I have seen. I must say though, as formal as blocks are practiced in karate, they end up being the slap and parry type in heated sparring anyway. I hope I make sense and that you are able to help me understand.

Domo arigato.

6th January 2003, 00:58
I think your question is a little simplified, Ben, but I'll have a go at a basic answer.
First, there are many different styles of karate, an umbrella term that simply means "empty hand". Some of the harder karate styles, such as Kyokushin, are more inclined to try to stop a punch or kick dead, rather than deflecting (parrying) it, whereas softer styles such as Wado are more in tune with the (perceived) Shorinji Kempo approach. Having said that, there are very hard blocks within Shorinji Kempo, such as soto oshi uke, which can be better described as a blow against the incoming (attacking) limb, rather than a block per se.
The purpose of a basic Shorinji Kempo block is not to stop the attack dead, but to redirect the force so that the defender remains safe, but the flow is uninterrupted so that the attacker continues to move in a direction now controlled by the defender. So, for example, against an incoming jodan-level punch, instead of stopping the fist dead, in Shorinji Kempo we seek to deflect the punch to the side, away from our own head area, but keeping the attacker moving forward and now slightly to one side. Thus, they are now overbalanced, and at the apex of such broken stance, we counter-attack, thereby capitalising on their momentum. Effectively, the attacker impales himself on your counter-punch. As they are still moving forwards when you counter-punch, the combined force of the impact is considerable.

Tripitaka of AA
7th January 2003, 09:45
Thanks for that one Tony, "impaled", I like that image :D .

7th January 2003, 11:09
Originally posted by Tripitaka of AA
Thanks for that one Tony, "impaled", I like that image :D .
Well, David, you know we Shorinji kenshi always stick it to the bad guys... ;)