Tachimura Kusanku – Karate Kata

sakugawa no kon

The aim of kata is to transcend kata. This week I’ve mostly focussed my personal training around one form in particular. Tachimura Kusanku. There’s something in the movements I’m really ‘feeling’ right now and it’s getting to that stage when whole sections of the form are ‘opening up’ to reveal a subtle inner depth. It’s both absorbing […]

High kicks in Okinawan karate?

Miyagi teaching - kicks

High kicks in Okinawan karate do exist. But they are rarely used and it really comes down to your personal ability. This post explores the kicking methods found in Shuri-te influenced karate styles such as Tachimura-ha and Udundi

Mokuso: “Karate begins and ends with gratitude”


  Very often we hear the phrase “karate-do begins and ends with curtesy”, which, in the West, has largely come to mean ‘start and finish with a bow’. But I’d like to pass on something that my teacher Higa Kiyohiko impressed upon me, which I feel goes far beyond simply ‘paying respect, for respects’ sake’. […]

The two hands of Okinawa Ti

“Most people assume that empty-hand combat comes before weaponry training. When in fact, the opposite is true.” Ti, like karate, advocates using any part of the body as an effective weapon for self-defence. But the origins of Ti actually stem from its weaponry practice and are, in a sense, a direct extension of weapons usage, both in physical […]

SippingTi – The returning wave

SippingTi: Joel Reeves author of The Karate-ka

“A personal blog is a reflection of the individual who keeps it.” SippingTi first started as a means to enable trainees of my London dojo to follow my journey in Okinawa, where I was eager to pursue my training in Ti (Te) under a reclusive teacher who had long stopped teaching publicly.