Wear sandals and just walk! Basics of Japanese martial arts and Budo

This time I will explain how to practice the way of walking in Japanese martial arts and Budo.

The Japanese martial arts way of walking is an efficient way of walking that does not get tired.

I will explain what it is like.

        Table of contents       
Wear sandals and just walk
Reasons to practice with sandals
1.Stabilize your head
2.Align the foot
3.Movement with sandals is based
Practice everyday and every time

Wear sandals and just walk

The conclusion is to walk in Zouri which is Japanese traditional sandals.

Sandals are footwear that was once worn by all Japanese.

Shoes began to spread in Japan because they began to introduce Western-style troops in the 1890s.

It is surprisingly recent that Japanese people generally wear shoes after the 1950s.

Many Japanese martial arts were originally born when sandals were commonplace.

This means Japanese martial arts and Budo are based on sandals.

Sandals and shoes are fundamentally different in the way of walking.

When you are walking with shoes, you can say that walking is delayed running.

Walking with shoes and running with shoes are the same behavior.

You are walking while kicking up using the toe side of your foot.

The shoes are high heeled to support this.

In the case of sandals, heels are not high.

Also, because it has a thong, it does not kicking up.

The big difference between shoes and sandals is that shoes move weight on the toes of the feet, while sandals put weight on the heels of the remaining leg even after putting out the legs.

The way of walking with shoes is by kicking and moving.

You can move quickly using the power of the moment.

Walking in sandals leaves weight on the remaining legs and walks in a slippery way.

The walking speed is slower, but you can walk steadily even on snowy roads.

In Budo and martial arts, emphasis is placed on the stability of sandals rather than these shoe-style walks.

Reasons to practice with sandals

When thinking about Budo and martial arts merits by walking with sandals, there are the following three points to be careful.

1.Stabilize your head
2.Align the foot
3.Movement with sandals is basic

1.Stabilize your head

When walking in shoes, you are moving up with your toe.

If you kick the ground, you will lift your body.

If you get in from the opponent at that timing, there is no way you can do it anymore.

In order to eliminate this gap, it is important to move without moving up and down.

By the way, it is often thought that such walking is like walking on the ground every time.

Unfortunately, This world is not only a flat place.

It is safe to lift your feet off the ground.

The important thing is not to raise or lower the position of your head height when you walk.

2.Align the foot

It is a movement that is commonly seen in karate “Kata”. to align both feet once when moving.

The old martial arts are designed to move once the legs are aligned.

It may be easy to understand if you imagine ice skating.

When the footing is slippery, once the feet are aligned and you can turn around.

This is like a state in which the force is stored as the spring shrinks.

Even in the case of skates, you will be able to change your direction of movement by align both feet.

When changing direction, it will be difficult to exert uniform power if the direction of limbs is broken.

If your feet are aligned, you can sink in with your whole body.

This can be said to be a state where you can exert strength when you get under your opponent.

Aligning the legs means concentrating the power at one point and aligning the direction.

Of course you can make a spring-shrinkage reservoir even if your feet are not aligned.

There are two legs, so you can do the same thing with one.

However, you will not be able to exert the same power if you do not understand exactly what it is like when your feet are in place.

3.Movement with sandals is based

There are several things that can be done with shoes but not with sandals.

The movement that can be done with shoes is the movement that can be done by putting weight on toes.

For example, sandals can not stand on your toes. 

This means that you can not kick with your toe standing.

The kicking with the sandal will remain with a tack. (You can do it with soft sandals, but …)

You can not run as dynamically as shoes.

It will run like a ninja.

It is also difficult to climb the slope straight like shoes.

If you do not move while zigzag, sandals will come off.

Writing like this may make sandals seem more inconvenient than shoes.

So what are the benefits of sandals that you want to gain even if you lose the benefits of shoes?

Why we have to walk with sandals style in Budo and martial arts?

The answer is because you will be stable.

Walking with sandals will not raise or lower your head height.

This means that it is easy to aim.

For example, even if you aim with a gun, if the height of your head goes up and down while you are walking, the aim will not be decided easily.

In order to get an accurate aim, you must first be stable.

Practice everyday and every time

The ancient martial arts trained this walk style in various ways.

For example,

In sumo, the practice of keeping the feet on the ground and move is the foundation of there style.

Even in Kyudo (Japanese archery), the movement of the foot when shooting a bow is way of the sandal style.

In Hokushin-Ittoryu swordsmanship, they do Mamemaki keiko(Spread beans on the floor and practice).

They practice the attacking step without stepping on the beans.

Hiromichi Nkayama, who is known as a master of swords, Iai and wands, says that 

His master made him wear long thong Geta(Japanese wooden sandals) for practice.

It is natural in Japanese martial arts to be aware of walking style during practice like this.

I recommended to use sandals to be able to do such walk style without being conscious.

In these days, training at a dojo can not take so long.

For example, if one hour per week is a schedule, one year of practice time is only 52 hours.

This is calculated to be overtaken in only 13 days if there is a person who practices 4 hours a day.

Of course, this is a simple calculation, so this is not necessarily the case.

However, if you do work, you can not take much time for training.

I recommend sandals for people who can not get much training time.

In this way, you can change your everyday walk into practice.

While at home, if you live in sandals, you can maintain your sandals for several hours of the day.

Even with this alone, the practice time of walking can be extended dramatically.

By the way, walking is also considered to have scientific benefits.

You can gain health while practicing walk style of martial arts.

If you focus on meditation, you will gain concentration and problem solving skills at the same time.

As you can get these combined effects just by walking, there are no doubt that there are positive effects from various aspects.

However, there is also a negative side that if you walk in sandals you will find a slightly different way of walking.

Related article

The most important thing in Budo(Japanese martial arts) is how you walk

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