Tag Archives: karate techniques

Newsletter 1036

What is ‘Fake Karate?’

Good morning!

One of the main things wrong

with karate today

is bunkai.

It’s funny,

I have heard people who believe in 

the more combative methods,

talk about how worthless Bunkai are.


I have seen a LOT of schools that don’t even practice bunkai.

so people don’t practice making karate work,


as a result,

they don’t know how to make it work.

when I was training we didn’t call the form applications ‘bunkai.’

We called them ‘Promise Fights.’

It was the ‘promise’ of a fight.


as time went on,

it was more.

It was the postulate of a fight.

A postulate is an idea.

If you practice promising enough,

the idea works.

It is that simple,

and that complex.


many of the applications are worthless,

they are either dancers or posers.


they don’t fit the form.

But the forms have been really screwed up,

so that is understandable.


when we did the form applications,

or ‘Promise fights,’

as we called them,

we had 1/3 to 1/2 of the class time to do them.

We would face each and get ready,

we stepped forward with an attack,

and the defender did his promise fight.

Class after class,

year after year,

and a strange thing happened.

Because it was the same every time

we began to see where a body would move

before it would move.

We weren’t fighting,

we were looking,

and we would suddenly see the dip of the shoulder,

the turn of the foot,

the glaze of the idea,

and we knew what was coming,

before it was even launched.

So damned simple and workable,

yet it has,

in many schools,

been put aside.

And even if bunkai are practiced,

they don’t make sense,

they don’t fit the form,

they dance and they pose.

Our applications were VERY workable.

No posers,

no dancers.

They looked like the forms,

but they were VERY functional in combat.

I’ve talked about how the upper students

could actually make them work in freestyle.

And people have given up doing applications

across the arts.

It is easier to have a fellow punch a bag,

than think about the turn of the hip,

or the wrist,

year after year.

The sad truth is that most people

think that karate, 

and other martial arts,

are all about fighting.

May I coin a phrase?

If people think that,

they are not doing karate,

they are doing…

‘fake karate.’

And here’s an interesting little item,

the people who say,

‘my art is better than yours,’

are manifesting a fight,

and they are guilty of…

‘fake karate.’


believe me,

Fake Karate is every bit as bad as fake news.


just to let you know,

I’m working on a book,

and it’s a big one.

Might even come in two parts.

But it is proving…difficult.


when I write a book

I sit down and write it,

takes maybe a week or two.

But this one is just beating me up.

I have rewritten it,

broken it into pieces,

recombined it,

and it is just being stubborn.


my apologies for making you wait,


you might want to make sure

your matrix karate is ready for when this is released.

You are really going to need 

to have your art down,

because this is going to expand it.


The book is about what happened to karate,

and i am specifically speaking of the applications.

The bunkai, if you will.

Full of history,

full of applications,

full of matrixing.


I’ll keep working on it,

but you should look into either

Matrix Karate


The Master Instructor Course.

In fact,

I really shouldn’t do this.

there’s no reason to,

except that I’m a nice guy…

Buy one and I’ll give you the other.

Just buy one,

then email me at: aganzul@gmail.com 

and I’ll send you both courses.

This is good until October 31st.

Happy Halloween!

Now, have a great work out!


And don’t forget to check out the interview


I’m always pushing my novels,

did you know I write other stuff?

If you want to know the truth about government,

why we have riots and why idiots keep getting into office,

why the government seems to do the exact wrong thing

almost ALL the time…

then check out:




The Basic Rules of Muscles in the Martial Arts

Newsletter 863 ~ Don’t forget to sign up for the newsletter and get some FREE BOOKS!

The Secret of Strong Muscles in the Martial Arts

And there is a secret.
Before get to it,
let me go over the basic understanding
of how muscles work in the martial arts.

First off,
the forms are calisthenics.
The horse stance is a squat,
the front stance is an almost lunge,
and so on.

every time you snap the muscles,
close them violently to a focus,
you are using plyometrics,
plyometrics is contraction and expansion of muscle
designed to increase strength.

And everybody knows
how studying the leverage of muscles,
and using those muscles,
when throwing people around
is fantastic exercise for the body.

After a lifetime of doing forms,
tossing people around,
striking and kicking,
I am in top shape.
I shake my head in dismay
when I see people younger than me,
tottering around on canes,
clutching walkers,
hauling oxygen bottles.

All that stuff could be avoided.

A little fun in the martial arts every day.

Just playing tag with your fists,
gotcha with kicks,
and a little grab and toss with bodies…

And, it’s not too late!
You can eat right,
exercise right,
and turn your age back.

I promised you a secret.
and it’s good one.
One that I’ve never heard anybody talk about.

At first,
you work out hard.
You build your strength,
you push yourself until you can do those techniques
without any problem.

when it isn’t any problem
you stop working so hard.
In fact,
you start to go backwards.
you use less and less muscles.

The work outs you do won’t be as hard,
but the mental focus is greater,
until you don’t use muscles at all.

Effortless martial arts,
putting somebody down with a finger.
Isn’t that a great ‘death strike?’

Or tossing somebody with a shrug,
everybody stares at you and says,
‘What’d he do?’

And what you do is simple,
you use muscles
until you don’t need muscles.

The fact of the matter is
there are three aspects to the martial arts,

Speed and power diminish with age,
but technique done right,
will never fade.
Good technique uses the muscles less and less,
until you don’t need them.
A weak guy can throw a strong guy.
If a guy was actually to stay weak,
after doing some intense martial arts.

But that’s the secret,
do your techniques,
put awareness into your techniques,
until you don’t need muscle,
you just know the angle,
and your correct body alignment
lets the energy flow.

there’s a lot more to it,
I’ll talk more about this stuff on this blog
at MonsterMartialArts.com

In the meantime,
if you’re interested in some very streetwise stuff
that really works the muscles,
fast changes
lots of good, clean fun,
and exercises that will build muscles
until you reach the stage
where you don’t use muscles,
try this:


It’s a weapons course,
very logical and quick to do,
and, heck,
the guy who comes after you on the street
will likely have a weapon.
Might just as well learn how to swing a little quick weight at his head,

Happy Easter!




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Three Kenpo Techniques for a Street Fight

Kenpo Techniques for Survival

These three kenpo techniques-and you can develop them as taekwondo techniques, or karate techniques, or whatever–will help you survive any attempted mugging. They are quick, they are nasty, and the are built so that you can be the one that walks away. Just don’t use them unless there is a real threat to your life!

kenpo fighting self defense

Be the winner!

pa kua chang instructor

How to Analyze Kenpo Techniques for Real Fighting

To be sure, I developed these self defense techniques in karate tournaments a few decades ago. They can be used in the ring, but only with proper control. Use them on the street however, and you must use them without holding back.

The first technique is to break the fingers right at the beginning of the fight. Many people will have open hands, not always, but enough to where this technique will really work. So when you close the distance, assuming you are not kicking first, you must strike down on his fingers with a good, quick fist.

If you can break his fingers he will have second thoughts about attacking you–injuries do that to a person. In his head he will be going, ‘you mean I’m going to get hurt?’ And if he does continue to fight he will have one hand that isn’t worth much.

Second thing, goes right along with breaking the other fellow’s fingers, is to push his arms down. Force them down, trap them so he can’t use them, and you are going to have a heck of an advantage. This is what Bruce Lee used to do with his ‘Straight Blast.’

Third, you want him to blink. This fits right in with the shooting motion of the hands as you move into him and break his fingers and trap his hands. If you can shoot the fingers all the way to the eyes, and actually strike the eyes, then you are going to be fighting a fellow who can’t see. That is going to be a definite advantage, eh?

But even if you don’t manage to blind the attacker, if he blinks and thinks backward in his mind, then he will already be halfway to losing the fight. He will have gone from attacking you to defending himself. A mugger going backwards is not nearly the threat as one who is aggressively moving forward.

To summarize, the points in this article are break things on the way in, push his arms down, and make him blink or blind him. These three strategies should be the start and heart of any good defense if you want to save your life. So if you practice these karate techniques and I certainly don’t mind if you call them taekwondo techniques or Kenpo Techniques-you won’t be the loser in a street fight!

kenpo techniques

Do Karate Kata Work? Or Is It a Waste of Time?

Are Karate Kata a Waste of Time?

This story, or what happened to me while learning Karate Kata, is absolutely true.

I was a first brown back about ’72, and one day a bunch of us young belts were talking about whether Karate Kata worked. The instructor, a fellow name of Ron Maletti, who nobody has ever heard of, heard us talking, and he got a tight grin.

best karate kata

Endless blocking drills backed up our Karate Kata.

He lined us up and freestyled us, one at a time, and said he would only use applications from the Pinans. For the next fifteen minutes he hit us, kicked us, threw us, using nothing but EXACT applications of the form. Maybe a wiggle of motion to set up his response, but he used only applications exactly as we practiced them.

Then he said, “This is too easy. Name a karate kata.” So when we freestyled we would bow, name a form, and he would defeat us using an exact application from the form we named. Pinans, sip su, kima chodan (horse form or tekki), or whatever, he knocked us down and laid us out, and at the end of the time he wasn’t even breathing hard. And two things to note: one, he had maybe five or six years experience, and was a third degree black belt. And, he wasn’t the best upper belt in the school. He just happened to be the one to hear us in our heresy.

So, do karate kata work?

They do when they are taught properly by people who know what they mean, who know the drills that go along with them, who are dedicated to learning the system and don’t bother with all the new stuff coming along. Unfortunately, I don’t see the martial arts being taught in this manner, and people have pretty much forgotten the drills and real applications. Guarenteed, this is a true story, it happened to me personally. Have a great work out! Al from MonsterMartialArts(dot)com.

That’s the way it was at the Kang Duk Won, and that’s the system this site is dedicated to. The real system that resulted in real power, fantastic fighters, the ability to take a strike anywhere…and it was, is, FUN to do!

Click here to check out why you should study karate kata.

Learn Zombie Kung Fu Now and Survive the Coming Apocalypse!

Zombie Kung Fu is Coming!

I bet that if I started a zombie kung fu martial arts school I would get fabulously rich. I could teach all the secret martial arts techniques that the living dead use to rip the beating and oh, so juicy heart out of some fool who can’t run very fast. I could teach people the secret monster karate techniques that…maybe I should tell you what this article is about?

My wife was positive that I was destroying my sons’ fragile, eggshell mentalities. We would sit for hours and eat popcorn and watch monster movies. And then I would teach them how to do the martial arts.

What she didn’t know was that we were studying several factors which were crucial to learning the martial arts. The main thing we got into was the use of wires and make up. Learn these two things and it will change the way you look at the martial arts, and it will even undo the less than beneficial effects of Hollywood scriptwriters.

First, we would spend hours dissecting the methods by which Hollywood does its effects. How did that zombie leap from one roof to another roof? The answer, we would find, would be a lift with a wire, or a blue screen and an invisible platform pasted onto the background.

This led to attempts to duplicate certain stunts, with me holding onto the back of the pants, placing a hand under the back, or otherwise seeing if something could be done. Interestingly, this led to the boys appreciating the need for people who actually knew how to spot (grin) and proper instruction before attempting those things they do on TV and tell you not to do.

The second special effects thing was makeup, and while we didn’t start roaming the neighborhood dressed in monster drag, we did get in severe analysis of how make up could be used to enhance slaughter. If you bent the head a certain way, put a metal plate against the throat, you could set off a small charge and make it look like a throat was being slaughtered. Intense!

And, the method for inserting arrows, bullets, swords, or whatever the weapon of your choice into the body part of your choice proved educational. This led to analysis of how the body might really move under severe impact. Quite fascinating.

I know this is a weird bit of writing, and I know that people will not like me for the way I raised my kids. But my kids are not taken in by Hollywood special effects, don’t get upset by fake blood, appreciate good film making, know that no actors were harmed in the filming of this movie, and understand better how reality functions. So I think you better learn a little Zombie Kung Fu, that way maybe you’ll stand a chance of surviving when the zombies come to your neighborhood.

zombie kung fu

Tai Chi Principles and the Art of Going with the Flow

I was a reading a book a long time ago, can’t remember the book, but the author was into zoology, and he recounted an incident he had with snake. The snake was a healthy 8 foot boa constrictor, and it was late at night, and the snake got a little too loving.

The Tai Chi practictioner started to get alarmed, the snake squeezed harder, and then Tai Chi kicked in. Wherever the snake pressed, the Tai Chi-ist relaxed.

Now, here is a truth of the universe…when a snake squeezes, relax, and the snake will relax.

Or, when you relax, the universe relaxes.

And the snake stopped squeezing, and our lovable Tai chi artist was safe.
A little time spent doing the form and push hands will prove this one real quick, and it is a good one to prove.
I am a firm believer in a hard punch, but I am also a firm believer in a soft punch, and in giving way to get, in giving up to win.
Did you know there are ninety minutes of hard core, soft techniques on the Five Army Tai Chi Chuan DVD? Not karate techniques, but soft techniques where you use a twitch, or a press of the finger, and the attacker…relaxes. Grin. Check it out,and make sure you pick up the free book on Matrixing on the home page.

Black Belt Movie is Filled with Excellent Japanese Karate Techniques!

Good Japanese KarateIt is Japanese Karate that actually popularized the Black Belt, and it is appropriate that the Japanese make a movie concerning the significance of that rank.
To be sure, the Black Belt in question is an heirloom being passed down, and which of three students should inherit it?
One student is too feisty, one student won’t fight, and the other student is injured.
All of which makes for a good allegorical plot.
Not a good plot, but a good allegorical plot.
There are evil men selling girls, evil generals ignoring the emperor, and…well, that about covers it.
And, there is character conflict that is, uh, wooden and unreal.
But, darn it, there is excellent Japanese Karate!
Good forms, one punch kills, techniques that shrug an attacker to the ground, pressure point strikes that render a villain senseless, and techniques that render a sword wielder…broken.
You munch popcorn through the acting, chuckle a bit, and then the crisp, clean karate techniques blast off.
Don’t confuse them with kung fu, or MMA, or something else. The movie is ‘BlackBelt,’it is available on Netflix, and it is good Japanese Karate, done by good Black Belts, and they the movie is definitely worth while.
Dron by Monster Martial Arts. We have lots of good Karate courses there.

Energy Flux Concept Can Be Used in Kung Fu Self Defense Techniques

This is a very easy and intuitive way to weaken your opponent simply by using an energy flux concept. This concept can be used before you use any of the kung fu self defense techniques, or before karate kumite. You can use it when any confrontation happenswhich is going to require you to use physical force on somebody.

Now, it won’t knock somebody out, I can’t guarantee  that you will win a fight, that is going to depend on the degree of dedication you apply to your normal martial arts training. But it may weaken him in a subtle way, and give you the edge in launching the first strike. I don’t know about you, but even a slight edge is something I want to bring with me to a kung fu fight, or any kind of martial arts fight.

Now, to set this concept up, you need to know something about the body, and about the energy of the body. There is a main pathway for energy which runs right up the front of the body and down the back. This pathway is a main meridian, or channel, for major energy flow in the body.

What we want to do is disrupt this energy for just an instant, and cause the opponent’s body to move more slowly. We are going to do this by reversing the energy flow in the central meridian. This is very easy to do, and will slow the opponent’s body down.

To make sure you knowhow this technique works, have a partner stand with his feet shoulder width apart and his arms straight out to the sides. Now, press down on his hands gently, and you will notice how much force you have to apply. Second, place your finger on his neck and trace a line down the center of his body to the belly button, and now press on his hands.

You should notice that he gets noticably weaker. Now ‘zip’ your finger from the belly button to the neck, and you will notice he is stronger. This quick (1 to 2 seconds) motion slows his energy down, or returns it to normal speed (depending on which way you go), and the result is weaker or stronger.

Practice this with many different people. Don’t tell them what you are doing (until after), just practice zipping and unzipping energy. After a while you will actually be able to stand back and trace the path with your moving eyes, and cause weakness or strength.

Now, depending on you and your dedication to the martial art, this may or may not take a while to accomplish. It will happen sooner if you are a dedicated martial arts fanatic, and you practice your kung fu techniques religiously, and, especially if you have matrixed your martial art and understand how energy flux theory works. That understood, that is how you use the energy flux in any kung fu self defense techniques.

If you want to know more about energy flux theory, matrixing, or the best Shaolin Kung Fu in the world, check out the courses at Monster Martial Arts.

Using Bunkai Applications to Define the True Art

To find and develop Karate as a True Art, and this would include Shotokan, Goju, Uechi, or various other types of the art, one should always look to the techniques. The bunkai are the kata made real, they are concepts made to work. They are the heart of the monster that is The True Art.

The first step, in making your art work, is to make your stance work. The forms teach how to get into stances from a variety of directions and previous postures. So one should practice the movements of the kata until this concept of transitioning from stance to stance can be done without thought.

The second step, if you are going to make the karate forms real, is to make sure your limbs are set in positions that are functional. There are many arm positions in the martial arts techniques where your limbs cannot support weight, and therefore can’t really make the technique work. You must examine your patterns and altar arm positions until they become functional in real world situations.

The third step is to have proper body alignment between the floor and the target. The body is a chain of muscles and bones from earth to strike (block), and you must make sure that every piece of the body is properly aligned. The old wisdom, a chain is as strong as its weakest link, is certainly important here.

The fourth step if you are going to make karate moves become significant, is to work on your breathing. Breathing should be relaxed, but intent upon keeping the abdomen taut, especially upon striking, or getting struck. Breathing simply for the sake of breathing, as is done in the art of Goju Ryu Karate, must be inspected for real function, and possibly altered if you are going to have real martial arts self defense.

The fifth and final step, and ultimately the most necessary, is that you must have Coordinated Body Motion (CBM) when you use your body to do martial arts. You must harmonize all motion, taking into account the length and mass of every muscle and limb. You must understand how this all relates to real world timing, and you must make your body motions respect this concept of harmony.

An intriguing tidbit of data is that martial arts fighting has very little to do with finding The True Art. As a matter of fact, fighting tends to disrupt the mental processes that are necessary to put the pieces together that will resurrect your martial art. This piece of information is something that the old masters understood, and not just because they were old.

Any art can be a great art, but it always requires a great sensei, and a great student. The purpose of this bit of writing has been to educate students to be their own great teachers. Ultimately, your progress is up to you, and if you understand that then it will be easy to use Karate techniques to find the True Art.

You can get a lot more data on how to make your art perfect at Monster Martial Arts.