Karate Geek Video: The Grablock – Konku Sho Challenge

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Normally I would have the video up above my post because, honestly, most people jump right into watching and forget about the text side of these things. This time, though, I wanted to put a little preface first.

This video was inspired by an incident in a recent class at Red Dragon Karate in Glendora. It struck me a while back that one of our self-defense forms, Grablock, is in a portion of the RDK version of the Konku Sho kata. Feeling pretty cocky, I brought this to Shihan Casamassa’s attention…and he promptly shot me down.

Rather than just sputter out into oblivion, I decided to make a video show the two movements…risking both my marriage (because it was late at night and I had no students to demonstrate with) and extensive ridicule when I went back to class.

What do you think? Is Grablock in Konku Sho? I think it is.

2 quick notes: First, somehow my auto-focus was switched on for this video without my knowing it! Technology is the worst!

Second, the spear/ridgehand in Konku Sho would probably work even better going over the top of the parry-block (or grablock capture) and should have more of a grab in the back. Forgive me, it was after midnight and my brain shut off a bit during the demonstration! Plus, I was trying to be extra delicate with the wife! She terrifies me far more than Shihan Casamassa does!

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Karate Geek
Mat Nastos is the Karate Geek, Amazon Best-Selling Author, writer for film/tv/comics, with black belts in American-form karate and aikido.

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2 Comments

  1. Sensei Mat-please get some sleep-… it’s close. but close only counts when using hand grenades and thermo-nuclear devices. the Bunkai will not apply when comparing two different moves- If you change the move in the kata to prove your point- you have changed the kata. >PS the knowledge I get is from the 10th degree (just sayin) so once in a while it is ok to…trust it. Shihan- #50years strong.

    • I fully trust you and that was more me being playful. My thinking was that, since katas are really mnemonic devices to help a martial artist remember forms/techniques they’ve learned — and are often done in a short hand manner — that the move could be used as a way to work the grablock self-defense move into kata learning. To reinforce it. Using kata shorthand, the two moves (parry block + spear hand (or ridgehand to the groin) + back away shuto block/check; and the grablock defense form) are identical. Picture the spear hand being pushed in between the trapped arm and opponent’s torso and it is grablock.

      Of course, I realize I’m debating with a man who has taught and lived the form for 50 years and that this is more of an intellectual exercise on my part (and whose father is the man who remastered the kata into its modern form!). It was designed one way specifically…my thinking is that it could be also used to show a student how a self-defense form works in the “fight” of a kata with no real change to the move. We all know (and have taught) that there is an elegance/refinement to what is shown in a kata versus what would be done practically.

      I’m stubborn, but I will always bow to your wisdom and knowledge. I’m going to keep pitching curveballs from time to time tho! One of the greatest thing about martial arts is that art and personal expression aspect. What we’re learning gets me excited and I love to play with the material!

      I appreciate you stopping by my little corner of the Internet!

      -Mat N.

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