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Other Martial Arts

When I was about 20, my Karate sensei encouraged me to practice other martial arts. Some might think it better to concentrate on Karate alone. With my sensei's enouragement, I practiced Aikido, Kendo, Iaido, and Judo. I had practiced some of these and other arts (Kenpo and Tai Chi) when I was younger.

In the short term, my Karate training might have suffered. In the long term, my sensei could not possibly have given me better advice. Now, when I speak to my friend who is a Aikido sensei, I say "Karate and Aikido are the same." One of my pleasures is to match bo against bokken with my sons who practice Kendo.

All martial arts have a great deal in common. The differences are more a factor of emphasis than fundamental.

A person who is experienced in other martial arts has a better chance of countering them, if necessary. And some of the best Karate sensei I have met practiced Judo first. Judo, Karate and Kendo are an excellent mix. But is is best to excel at one.


Charles C. Goodin