Karate Training

Karate Training

344 University Ave.

We offer: A non-competitive class that provides individualized instruction by  limiting class size. The goal is to help people develop a solid understanding of a classical system of karate in a safe and fun environment.

Classes: Monday and Wednesday 6:15-7:45. / Kids Saturday 10:45
Style: Okinawan Goju-Ryu
Level: Beginner to advanced
Primary Instructor: Greg McKenna, Renshi, Rokudan
Instructors: Denise Arsenault, sandan; Mary MacPhee, sandan
Call: 892-4658

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The term Karate consists of 2 Japanese symbols or kanji. The first “kara” is often translated as “empty” and the second “te” as “hand”.

This would be a relatively direct translation of the kanji and reflects the nature of much of the training where an individual practices techniques of self-defense with nothing in their hands.

However, when one realizes that the term Karate is typically accompanied by the kanji “Do”, which translates as “path” or “way”, as in Karate-Do, the translation of “empty-hand” lacks the depth necessary to truly describe the nature of the practice. Rather, an interpretation of the kanji becomes more appropriate.

“Karate” is more than just “empty-hand”. It is the person who approaches the training with an open mind, one that comes waiting to be filled; and so the “Karate -Do” becomes the path through which an individual can fill themselves with the wisdom to live successfully.

Wisdom that is attained through the disciplined practice of physical activity that requires constant repetition and over-learning such that there is a compete focus of the mind on the “now” which leads to the practice becoming a form of moving meditation.

This, of course, is a condition that is attained after years of dedicated practice. Some may never come to “karate” with the intention of following this path.

Often, it is a by-product of long-term practice that was motivated by short-term, developing physical fitness, or medium-term, self-defense, goals. No matter, each enters the practice with differing views of the means and purpose but all who stay benefit in one of these ways or in other ways that each individual needs to explore.

The practice of Karate-Do, like other ancient traditions that require disciplined practice is an activity that can have a purpose as simple as increasing fitness or it can be a form of exercise with a greater purpose if one chooses.