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ABOUT URBAN TIGER KEMPO


What are the main differences between Urban Tiger Kempo and other traditional karate styles and martial arts?

Urban Tiger Kempo is the amalgamation of various styles to create one hybrid system consisting of Striking, stand-up Grappling and groundwork. Urban Tiger Kempo consists of several components

Ashihara Karate Jutsu - The Art of Sabaki

Japanese Jujitsu - The Gentle Art

Judo - The Gentle way

Aikido - The way of harmonising energy

Chin Na - The Art of Seizing and Locking

Shuai Jiao - The Art of Chinese Wrestling

TaiChi Quan - "Shadow Boxing"


Our Core component was founded in the 1980s, Ashihara Karate is a modern/contemporary karate system that places emphasis on practical self-defence and the cultivation of holistic wellness. As such, training focuses on fostering effective self-defence skills that is based on scientific logic and rational strategies. 


Most notably, Urban Tiger Kempo generally adopts an "MMA" stand-up fighting posture But with open hands palms outwards. Compared to the stances often seen in Traditional Karate, this stance / posture bears closer resemblance to modern kick-boxing.

From here, techniques are executed with an emphasis on being relaxed, natural and fluid, as opposed to being rigid and regimental.
Practicality is emphasized in Urban Tiger Kempo, hence techniques often involves dynamic body movements, positioning and striking to vital areas. This is done instead of adopting a head-on strategy that places importance on brute strength or sheer speed. Such a strategy is often referred to as Sabaki.
For real-life self-defence applications, Urban Tiger Kempo techniques focuses on simple and straightforward techniques, aimed at quickly neutralizing the opponent. Such techniques and applications are codified in our forms or Kata, 
When training, we aim to replicate the realism of actual combat as close as possible, but in a manner that is safe. Students learn to build confidence giving and receiving strikes, being Grappled, Thrown and Struck without getting injured. 


Do our students take part in tournaments?
Yes, some of them do.
But since regular classes are not designed for competition-styled Kempo, they take part in separate preparatory sessions.

Grading

Progression One's progress through the various levels of ability and understanding of karate is measured by means of periodic grading. The rewards of these Gradings are many and are symbolised by the presentation of a coloured belt. At first, only white, brown and black belts were used. There were many grades among these though and so other colours were later added to differentiate amongst them.

12th Kyu Jr White

11th Kyu Jr White/Red

10th Kyu White or Jr Red/White

9th Kyu Red

8th Kyu Blue/White

7th Kyu Blue

6th Kyu Yellow/White

5th Kyu Yellow

4th Kyu Green/White

3rd Kyu Green

2nd Kyu Brown/white

1st Kyu Brown

1st Dan Jr Black/white (Jr grade)

1st to 4th Dan Black

5th to 7th Dan Red/Black Block

8th to 10th Dan Red 

OSU
OSU is used in many situations and seems to mean a lot of things.  But what does it really mean? The word OSU comes from Oshi Shinobu, which means “to persevere whilst being pushed”.  It implies a willingness to push oneself to the limits of endurance, to persevere under any kind of pressure. It means patience, determination and perseverance.

Kata
Kata is sequences of movements for offence and defence applied against the simultaneous attack of either One or more than one opponent. Simply put, Kata's are various techniques and combinations which have been arranged in a series to help the students learn them. The movements are rationally and systematically combined. In this way, students can, even on their own, master the art of parrying. 

There are 7 Kata types:

Junior (Takiyoku)

Beginner's (Shoshinsha),

Basic (Kihon),

Sparring (Kumite)

Throwing (Nage),

Real Combat (Jissen). 

Goshin (Traditional self-defence)

The practice of Kata is similar to shadow boxing in that when it is practiced solo, it is performed against imaginary opponents. However where it differs is that each kata is a series of fundamental movements carried out according to a pattern which makes up a fixed routine. They represent both a compilation of fight controls, as well as a model for combinations. 

In Urban Tiger Kempo it is referred to as controlled technique Kata. Controlled technique kata has been devised to help explain the idea behind Urban Tiger Kempo Sabaki techniques. The Kata prepares one for real fight situations and are unique to Urban Tiger Kempo


 
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ABOUT BLACK TIGER JAPANESE KICKBOXING 

Kickboxing K-1 Style

Black Tiger Martial Arts has had the opportunity to help countless students acquire foundational skills, develop new techniques and confidently move forward in their learning journey. Japanese Kickboxing is born from Ashihara Karate with influence from Muay Thai Boxing and SanDa. This style is very popular and effective using hands, feet, elbows and knees. We also love our low kicks and up to full contact sparring. We have several Fighters who compete in Local, National and International tournaments as well as several Champions. Competing isn't compulsory and with the best Professional Martial Arts School to support students from all backgrounds and levels that's why whether you want to Kickbox for fitness or self defence or competing. Black Tiger Martial Arts will help you get there. 

Grading

Progression One's progress through the various levels of ability and understanding of karate is measured by means of periodic grading. The rewards of these Gradings are many and are symbolised by the presentation of a coloured belt. At first, only white, brown and black belts were used. There were many grades among these though and so other colours were later added to differentiate amongst them.

9th Kyu White

8th Kyu Red

7th Kyu Blue

6th Kyu Yellow

5th Kyu Orange

4th Kyu Green

3rd Kyu Brown

2nd Kyu Brown

1st Kyu Brown

1st Dan Jr Black/white (Jr grade)

1st to 4th Dan Black

5th to 7th Dan Red/Black Block

8th to 10th Dan Red 

 
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ABOUT BLACK TIGER TAI CHI

Black Tiger Martial Arts has had the opportunity to provide an exclusive opportunity to learn and practice Cheng Man Ch'ing 37 form, 6 Form and Yang 8 Form as well as the Yang 32 sword form. Whether you want to have gentle exercise to keep you moving or wanting to acquire foundational skills, develop new techniques Black Tiger Martial Arts is the best Professional Martial Arts School in the South Manchester area, we provide a wide range of classes to support students from all backgrounds and levels.
Our TaiChi classes are a fresh and easy way to learn. With everyone smiling and feeling refreshed after the class. 

 
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"DO" VERSUS "JUTSU"

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Two Japanese word elements are commonly found in the names of most Japanese martial arts: do and jutsu.  Jutsu simply refers to a collection of techniques, methods, skills or technical applications in a practical or scientific sense.  Do, on the other hand, is more philosophical, referring to a “way” or “path” to be followed as a lifestyle. In Zen Buddhism (a major influence on the development of martial arts in Japan), a do or tao is a religiously oriented way of life which is practiced for its own sake and which brings about self-knowledge and spiritual enlightenment.  In secular life the term refers to any art which is practiced to develop both technical proficiency and spiritual maturity, harmonizing body and mind. Consequently, when Gichin Funakoshi introduced karate-do (rather than karate-jutsu) to Japan, he introduced much more than an Okinawan fighting style, claiming also a spiritual and philosophical foundation for karate training.  As a do, karate was transformed from a fighting system into a Way which could rightfully claim a place in traditional Japanese martial culture. Other examples of this dichotomy include budo (“the martial way,” or, more literally, “the way of ending conflict”) vs. bujutsu (“military science”), kendo vs. kenjutsu (ken = “sword”), and jujutsu and aikijutsu (dangerous samurai grappling arts) vs. judo and aikido; judo is a safer-to-practice version of jujutsu developed primarily for purposes of sport and personal development, and aikido is a kinder, more humane version of aikijutsu with a strong mystical and philosophical foundation. Another Japanese do is bushido, bushi meaning “warrior.”  The Way of the warrior was the concept most intimately tied to the warrior culture of Japan, a rigorous standard of behavior and thought demanded of all samurai, and designed to produce principled citizens as well as effective soldiers.  In this early form of do the martial arts were not yet viewed as vehicles for self-development and enlightenment, but were nevertheless expected to constitute a total lifestyle and way of thinking beyond simple combat technique. At the KoSho karate school the Dojo Code gives a first indication of the responsible attitudes which students are expected to cultivate, if they haven’t already.  Philosophical concepts are rarely discussed overtly in class, but psychological effects of the training tend to emerge anyway.  Especially with children and young people, the improvements in concentration, perseverance, self-confidence, self-esteem, responsibility, achievement, sociability and level-headedness are often pronounced.  And even a kind of spiritual maturity sets in, involving reduced hostility and a feeling of being at peace with the world.  Such subtle changes in attitude do place students irrevocably on a new and better “path” in life, as they advance in the arts of karate-do and kobudo.  

Reference WINGATE, C. (1993)  Exploring our roots; historical and cultural foundations of the ideology of karate-do.  
Journal of Asian Martial 2 (3), 11-35.

©Wendell E. Wilson (2010) (email: minrecord@comcast.net) from Essays on the Martial Arts Home: http://www.mineralogicalrecord.com/wilson/karate.asp