The reality of Karate competitions

“Oh! The Places You’ll Go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won. And the magical things you can do with that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all. Fame! You‟ll be famous as famous can be, with the whole wide world watching you win on TV. Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So…get on your way!” Dr. Seuss

We see the photos, the videos. Sometimes even two cameras, moving. Modern coverage. Zoom on the actor. But where is the buzz, where’s the party? I’am afraid there is none, except in your head….

I noticed this at the 30th Okinawa Prefecture Karate-dō Championships. Big name.

Ryo performing his standards as the judges and officials watch on.

Ryo performing his standards as the judges and officials watch on.

It was held June 5, 2011 at Okinawa Prefectual Budokan in Naha, Okinawa.

Jumping techniques is equal to begging for points. It generates dynamics for potential spectators. I noticed at leat three different kinds of "stomping for heroism".

Bo doing his stomping trick, aka begging for points. There are at least three different kinds of “stomping for heroism”.

  • I saw later world champions.
  • I saw judges who were the personal Sensei of the competitors.
  • I saw no audience, only some parents.
  • I saw no fans, except me.
  • I saw no supporters.
  • I saw no stars.
  • I only saw competitors, judges, and officials.
  • When passing by the actors in the passageway, they looked down on me grunting some macho blah blah.
  • I saw nobody cared abot the circus.

Sakumoto Sensei (Ryu’ei-ryu) and Shinjo Sensei (Matsubayashi-ryu) watching on as judges.

Karate competitor:

Monthly pay: ? €
Christmas extra: ? €
Vacation extra (? days annually): ? €
Annual bonus: ? €
= ? € per annum.
Viable skill level: ?


One day they might shine, somewhere else, where other Karate people think competition Karate is a big fish.


No man there.

Until then, you keep playing in empty houses.

Worker at Daimler/Mercedes Benz

  • Monthly pay: 4000 €
  • Christmas extra: 2500 €
  • Vacation extra  (30 days annually): 4000 €
  • Annual bonus: 4500 €
  • = 59,000 € per annum.
  • Viable skill level: 100


In other words: get a life first. Then train Karate. Or pray some chick will cover it for ya.

© 2015, Andreas Quast. All rights reserved.

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