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周智文先生 空手道資歷介紹

The Karate-do Life of Chou, Chih-Wen

Since I was small, after discovering Jeet Kune Do of Bruce Lee and Karate by Yasuaki Kurata, I had always wanted to learn martial arts. Upon joining Taipei KaiNan Vocational High School (about July, 1975) I learned that the school had multiple martial arts-related clubs, such as Judo, Kendo, Boxing, Taekwondo and Karatedo. Originally, I planned to join the Taekwondo club, but after a series of events that started with going to the wrong club room, I ended up being involved with Karate. At that time, I practiced under the seniors at the club. Unlike my friend who was practicing Taekwondo, I didn’t actively take rank exams and so I was always a white belt and after a while I quit.

Around May, 1983, after completing my compulsory military service, a Taiwanese policy for all qualified males after high school graduation, I returned to my former workplace at Chunghwa Telecom. A colleague invited me to join the company karate group, and I did. The trainer at the time was Zhang Sanshui (張三水) Sensei.

(Around February 1989)
After I earned the 1st Kyu, the karate group I belonged to at the head office of the company discontinued its activities, so I joined the karate group at a branch office. There I met the trainer and Master Chen, Hsin-koei. Through training under Master Chen, I learned that the techniques of karate consist of waza from both Kata and Kumite. To explain this, I’ll use the two examples below:

  1. Kata is a series of waza that counter opponents in four directions, and consists of defense, offense, displacement, and containment (of the opponent). We must practice these fundamental movements of Kata: “displacement”, “offense” and “defense”, suited for each of the four directions, and only after attained proficiency can we start learning the fundamental general techniques, which are Kumite.
  2. The training method for Kumite, which is sparring, follows the steps of “Kihon, Gohon Kumite” -> “Kihon Sanbon” -> “Kihon Ippon”, “Jiyu Ippon” -> “Jiyu Tsuida,” during which the hands, legs, breathing, acute insight, Kyo and Jitsu are used to execute an attack that ends the match in an instant.

    It was such an honor for me to receive training from Master Chen Hung-Tsung in Karatedo, Jodo, Fujian White Crane, to learn from his personality and disposition, and various teachings directed for apprentices and instructors, as well as to receive various trainings from Asai Shuseki Shihan including 26 Shotokan Katas, Junro Go Kata and Joko Go Kata.

    I have learned that Karate is not just about acquiring self-defense skills or strengthening one’s body, which are focused on the hands and knees and other physical parts and how to operate them, but more important is the strengthening of inner training such as Butoku (武徳) and Sonshi Judo (尊師重道) (meaning, respect the master and morals) and I’ve learned these through my body.

    In the last few years, from Master Chen, Hsin-koei and Master Chen, Hung-tsung, I’ve learned from their deeds and words, treatment of people and objects, movements, selflessness, simplicity, and many other aspects that show the persistence, devotion, and contribution by the traditional Chinese martial artists to martial arts. I am now determined to actively spread the teachings of karatedo techniques and inner trainings, while remembering well to stay humble and honest.

    Lastly, I would like to abide by what Master Chen, Hung-tsung said, which is to “spend a long time searching for a good master, and spend a life time to learn from the master.” As such, I would like to continue to learn from both Master Chen, Hsin-koei and Master Chen, Hung-tsung and continue my training of my karatedo life until it ends.