Shidokan

Shidokan (士道館, Shidokan) karate is sometimes described as the triathlon of martial arts, as it encompasses knockdown (otherwise known as bare knuckle) karate, Muay Thai, and grappling.

Tournaments are full contact and are normally held in a boxing ring. Shidokan Karate was created by Yoshiji Soeno and originated in his training in Kyokushin karate.

Shidokan should not be confused with Shorin-ryu Shidokan, another style of Karate.

SHI Samurai, Spirit of, DO the Way, KAN group or training hall.

Yoshiji Soeno was born September 9th 1947, in TokorozawaShi, Saitama, Japan. From childhood, he was very interested in martial arts, and learned both Judo and Kendo.

Originally he found that Karate was not strong compared to Judo, but when he was fifteen Karate had evolved and was becoming much stronger. He first studied Wado-ryu and then joined Oyama Dojo (Kyokushinkai) under Masutatsu Oyama.

After entering Johsai University, he founded the Karatedo club and taught karate and kick-boxing. In his debut tournament, he was treated as a main contender and went on to win the finals of the first All Japan Karatedo Championships.

People admired his braveness and called him the “Tiger of Johsai” or “Brave Tiger of the Kyokushin.” He also practiced Muay Thai in Bangkok, and Karate in the United States.

After graduating he opened ‘Soeno Dojo’ and ‘Soeno Gym’, giving lessons in both karate and kick-boxing. In 1981 he founded The World Karatedo Association Shidokan and The Japan Fighting Association New Fighting Shidokan. Shidokan is considered to take the best from karate, kick-boxing, and Judo.

He respects the Japanese traditional Bushido spirits, encompassing the good parts of martial arts and combining them with spirit to progress the teaching and practice of karate. Shidokan spirit is Japanese Samurai spirit. Master Soeno still practices these techniques but the most important thing is the spirit.

Shidokan today: Today, Shidokan has dojos all over the world, in Japan, USA, Sweden, France, Arab countries, Greece and Britain, taking an active part in increasing the awareness of Karatedo. The first Shidokan dojo in Britain started in May 1991 when Jean Jacques Burnel returned from Japan and was graded by Master Soeno as 2nd Dan.

Shidokan USA, led by Shihan Eddie Yoshimura, has been one of the more successful branches in the last two decades. Based in Chicago, Illinois, Shidokan USA sponsors the renowned World Shidokan and Team USA tournaments. Shihan Yoshimura coined the term “The Triathlon of Martial Arts” to reflect the nature of the tournaments, which feature two to three rounds each of bare-knuckle, full-contact karate, Muay Thai kickboxing, and MMA-style grappling.

Characteristics: Training includes all the traditional waza (techniques), Judo, Jujutsu, Muay Thai and Kata. Holds, pull-downs, locks, throws, and strikes with the tibia and elbow are all part of the style.

The Dojokun is recited at the beginning and conclusion of every training session, allowing the students to reflect upon the guiding principles of Shidokan:

  • Keep the Samurai spirit.
  • Improve your character. Be polite to others.
  • Train your mind and body.
  • Live in a simple way. Love all mankind. Respect providence.
  • Self-seeking fighting is not allowed.

Basic techniques:
Japanese commands used in the dojo:

  • Ippon Kumite: one step fighting
  • Sanbon Kumite: three step fighting
  • Kancho Ni Rei: bow to the head of the world organisation
  • Shihan Ni Rei: bow to the master
  • Sensei Ni Rei: bow to the instructor (Sandan & above)
  • Senpai Ni Rei: bow to the senior (Shodan & Nidan)
  • Otagai Ni Rei: bow to each other
  • Naore: return to original position
  • Yame: stop
  • Yoi: get ready
  • Mogorei: no counting
  • Hajime: begin
  • Mawatte: turn
  • Kamaete: perform the technique
  • Seiza: kneel
  • Mokuso: meditate with eyes closed
  • Ossu: universal acknowledgement

Blocks (Uke):

  • Upper: Jodan-Uke
  • Middle: Chudan
  • Lower: Gedan-Barai (sweep)
  • Inside: Uchi-Uke
  • Outside: Soto-Uke
  • Double knife hand block: Morote-Shuto-Uke
  • Down crescent block: Nagashi-Uke
  • Double (augmented) block: Morote-Uke
  • Leg/knee block: Hiza-Uke
  • Palm block: Shotei-Uke
  • X-Block: Juji-Uke
  • Circular Hand: Mawashi-Uke
  • Elbow Block: Empi Uke
  • Foot Block: Ashi-Uke
  • Hooked back hand: Koken
  • Ridge hand: Haito
  • Hook block: Kake-Uke

Punches / hand-strikes (Tsuki):

  • Leading punch: Oi-Tsuki
  • Reverse punch: Gyaku-Tsuki
  • Snap punch: Ago-Uchi
  • Hammer fist: Tetsui
  • All back fist techniques: Uraken
  • All elbow techniques: Empi (hijiate)
  • Knife hand: Shutu
  • Upper punch: Shita-Tsuki
  • Hook punch: Kagetsuki
  • Reverse punch thrust: Enkei-Gyaku-Tsuki
  • Palm thrust: Shotei-Uchi
  • Hooked back hand: Koken
  • Hooked knee: kake-Miza-Uchi

Kicks (Geri):

  • Snap groin kick: Kin-Geri
  • Front kick: Mae-Geri
  • Thrust: Kekomi
  • Low Kick: Gedan-Mawashi-Geri
  • All Knee techniques: Hiza
  • Middle section kicks with tibia: Chudan-Mawashi-Geri
  • Side Kick: Yoko-Geri
  • Heel techniques: Kakato-Geri
  • Roundhouse kicks: Mawashi-Geri
  • Jump front kick: Tobi-Mae-Geri
  • Leg sweep: Ashi-Barai
  • Back Kick: Ushiro-Geri
  • Hooked kick: Kake-Geri
  • Jumping side kick: Tobi-Yoku-Geri
  • Reverse roundhouse kick: Ura-Mawashi
  • Jumping knee kick: Tobi-Hizageri
  • Jumping roundhouse kick: Tobi-Mawashi-Geri

List of Katas:

  • Taikyoku-Sono-Ichi
  • Taikyoku-Sono-Ni
  • Taikyoku-Sono-San
  • Pinan-Sono-Ichi
  • Pinan-Sono-Ni
  • Pinan-Sono-San
  • Pinan-Sono-Yon
  • Pinan-Sono-Go
  • Tekki
  • Yantsu
  • Tensho
  • Sanchin-No-Kata
  • Saifa
  • Gekisai dai
  • Gekisai sho
  • Shikono
  • Kaiten
  • Kanku

Belt Colors:

  • 11th kyu – white
  • 10th kyu – purple
  • 9th kyu – yellow
  • 8th kyu – orange
  • 7th kyu – blue
  • 6th kyu – green
  • 5th kyu – green
  • 4th kyu – green
  • 3rd kyu – brown
  • 2nd kyu – brown
  • 1st kyu – brown
  • 1st dan (shodan) – black