Matt over at Ikigai Way dropped off an awesome comment on my recent whinge about mangling my stump. He provided some information and links to a classical style of karate – Hakutsuru or the White Crane – that his instructor has trained in. Apart from the fact that it’s an interesting style of karate to study due to the heavy Chinese influence in its forms vs the comparatively rigid styling of modern styles like Shotokan (note I mean “modern” as used in the “post-modern”/Japanese post-modernism sense, and not in the misuse of the word in place of the word “contemporary”), it also features techniques that only utilise one leg!
For those unaware of what Hakutsuru looks like performed as a kata, Matt posted a couple of vids that I’m going to pinch and post up here as well:
First up is Seikichi Odo, who moves around with amazing skill despite his age: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iD78dP428ec (I can’t embed that one by request of the author, but please check it out, some amazing stuff in there).
The second one is of Matayoshi Shinpo:
Being the super champ he is, Matt even fired across a link to the Okinawa Hakutsuru Kenpo White Crane Association’s website, and in particular the articles written on the topic China and the Origins of Okinawan White Crane Kenpo (Part 1 and Part 2). I haven’t had a chance to do more than quickly skim through their site, but by plonking the links up here, I’m hoping it’ll remind to go through it in much more detail when I get a chance.
Since I’m curious about what I might be able to learn and apply from their style to me as an amputee, I’m going to drop them an e-mail to see if they can recommend any particular part of their literature or offer any advice on this one. I’ll post back with an update on how I go!