About Virginia Beach Karate School
O.B.I. Karate, one of the oldest martial art Schools in Virginia beach, was established by Sensei Noel Smith then 4th degree black belt. He had only one goal in mind, to teach the martial art of Karate-do as he learned it in Okinawa from Sensei Shugoro Nakazato to students in Virginia Beach.
Sensei Smith began his study of Kobayashi-te Okinawan Shorin-Ryu karate while stationed in Okinawa during the Vietnam war. Since the early 1970's the Dojo has produced many champion Karate-ka over the years, while focusing on traditional Shorin-ryu karate techniques and rooted in the Budo philosophy.
Sensei Smith, learned martial arts in Okinawa, at that time it was broken down into three segments of training. Kata, Kumite, Kobudo. This is the only way to effectivley learn and understand the martial art known as Karate. Even though Karate means "Open Hand" in Japanese, in Okinawan it was called Tōde or Tuudii meaning China Hand. Kobudo, the training with weapons was taught along side Karate. Sensei Smith training at Nakazato dojo with and without weapons, there was no division. Think of Karate and Kobudo as two sides of the same coin. They compliant each other. At OBI, your Virginia beach karate school, we still teach in this manner.
Karate "Open Hand"
Here we study body movements, the transfer of our weight to create power, in a very short about of distance, as effectively as possible. This is the reason we train in Kata, it teaches us short, quick powerful moves. While developing muscle memory. In addition to Kata, we train in Kihon or basic movements which includes blocks, punches and kicks from a variety of stances. We then put these together in simple one-on-one training drills that eventually lead to Kumite, sparring or controlled fighting. This is the process we learn self-defense, the ability to control the others persons body.
Kobuo, Training with Traditional Weapons
Okinawan tradtional weapons are thought of as an extenstion of the hands, to begin understand the concepts in Kobudo the student must have an foundation in Karate. These weapons are the Nunchucku, Tonfa, Kama, Bo, Sai and Eku. While training with these weapons the student will learn, or reinforce key concepts, that will further their unerstanding of karate. Just like Karate, Kobudo is learned through the practice of Kata, or forms.
Bunkai, an essential aspect of Karate and Kobudo
Bunkai is the "analysis" of Kata, it is the mental part of doing kata. Through it we give meaning to the moves and concepts no matter how small or seemingly inconsequential. Visualization is key to devleoping and training the Mind, Body and Spirit to work as one.
Kumite is the part of karate in which a person trains against an adversary, using the techniques learned from the kihon and kata. The students are not seeking to gain points, the goal of Kumite is to test yourself against another by putting what you have learned in Kata to practical use. The student then learns what needs to be worked in Kata and Kihon. This is the circle of Karate training. Kumite exisits both in Karate and Kobudo.
The simple formula for Okinawan Martial arts is:
Martial arts = Kata+Kobuo+Kumite
What is Martial Arts?
On the surface, most people think that Martial arts is all about kicking and punching. Martial arts is really a Mental, Physical and Spirital persuit that will get you in shape, and teach you to protect yourself and others. Martial arts is never about offense, it is always defense first and last.
What do we teach?
To learn effective Martial arts you must retrain your body through challenging workouts. These workouts, kata, will strengthen your body, and create new muscle memory, help you lose body fat through an aerobic and anaerobic exercises, kata.
Okinawan karate teaches all the elements you would expect to find in a fighting art, strikes with the hands, elbos, knees and feet. Defensive techniques centered around blocks and parrys that take away your opponents balance. These are the basics of Open Hand "Karate", in addition our students also learn weapons too.
We train in a system specifically for our self development and personal defense. What we learn can be applied in competitions as well. Once you have reached a particular point in your training, you will begin going to competitions