UMD MARTIAL ARTS CLUB
OF the Mesabi Martial Arts Dojo
Ueshiro-Bayashi Ryu is a true, traditional style, so the emphasis is on the student's self-development, both mentally and physically. We work on the deck to develop confidence, focus, discipline and physical stamina. Philosophically we seek peace, harmony and balance on deck and in our lives.
Physically, we emphasize the development of extremely powerful, perfect techniques to be used in life or death situations. With that said, it is very safe and we have never had a serious injury on our deck. There is sparring, (kumite) but not as you would normally see in modern competitions, where just a touch wins a point. We do not allow our students to spar until they reach a minimum of green belt. At that level they can only span in our dojo because they are still learning control so that they do not injure others. At purple belt they may enter competitions if they have demonstrated control, technical prowess, humility and focus.
Training level and intensity is determined by the student's rank, age and physical abilities or limitations. Master Ueshiro once said, "Karate is for everyone". We at the Ueshiro Okinawan Karate club believe in this concept whole-heartedly.
Children as young as the age of six are welcome to join, as well as senior citizens. Each individual trains to their own abilities and physical limits. Naturally, young, strong adults are challenged physically with intense physical techniques and moves, developing superior cardio-vascular strength and endurance.
Note: The greatest courtesy and respect are to be shown on the deck at all times.
1. First, after a few minutes of meditation, the instructor conducts warm-up exercises to loosen the muscles and increase metabolic rates.
2. Then everyone practices basic techniques, such as blocks, punches and kicks.
3. Next is usually but not always, kata training. Kata is defined as a series of pre-arranged offensive and defensive moves done against imaginary opponents. These kata have been developed over hundreds of years in Okinawa exclusively by the masters, to most accurately simulate life and death situations.
4. After that, more advanced training for the higher belts and continuing education for the lower belts follows. This can include bunkai (attacks/defenses within the kata), kumite, weapons, conditioning, competition elements and philosophical applications of our training.
5. Finally, the instructor ends the class with a short meditation and reflection.
All the training and teaching is conducted with respect and care. By perfecting our kata, we develop patience, focus and discipline that helps us in all the activities of our daily lives.