Blog Profile / Mokuren Dojo

Filed Under:Martial Arts / Judo
Posts on Regator:565
Posts / Week:1.4
Archived Since:March 5, 2008

Blog Post Archive

Beginning and ending kihon

There is this practice seen mostly in pre-war aikido guys, like Tomiki and Shioda, and their students - the practice of measuring ma-ai by crossing handblades prior to practicing a technique. This practice is not seen as much (at least...Show More Summary

Get some jo in your aikido

I read it somewhere - not sure where - that the old jodo guys said that it was relatively unimportant to correct students on the things that go on in the middle of the kata. He was saying that the really important thing to get right was the beginning and end of the kata.. Show More Summary

The hammer and the nail

Sometimes (not as often as you think) you are the hammer, and sometimes (much more often) you are the nail.. I tell all my students that ukemi is the most important self-defense aspect of the arts that we do for several reasons... Unless you are paid to be the hammer (i.e. Show More Summary

Trial by fire

Back in the day (as I understand it) it used to be common for competition to be an integral part of ranking in judo. I'm not talking about the points system, where you accumulate points toward your next rank by competing, etc... I'mShow More Summary

The REAL reason for terminal rank

Why is it that in judo, 10th degree black belt is the highest rank attainable?. I have no way to find out, but I suspect (pure conjecture) that it has to do with the expected time-in-grade for each rank. As I understand it, the time-in-grade in years for each rank is equal to the rank. Show More Summary

Terminal rank

Over the years, a lot of folks have recognized that the modern colored belt kyu-dan thing that Kano-san came up with was an imperfect thing. I think even Kano realized during his lifetime that there were problems with it, but instead...Show More Summary

Judo rank vs. karate rank

When I was digging through Wikipedia for information for that last post about karate ranks I noticed an interesting thing.. When you read through any of the articles on the famous big-name judo guys, almost all of them contain pretty extensive detail about when they received each of their ranks. Show More Summary

Jump-ranking (sorta) in karate

While we are on the subject of ranking, there is an interesting story about the history of Isshin-ryu karate-do. I don't know where it falls on the spectrum from absolute truth to apocrypha to pure B.S. but I've heard this piece of 'history' from several sources over the years.. Show More Summary


In the judo world every so often someone will get a promotion based solely on their performance at an event like a tournament (or more rarely a seminar or camp). This sort of field-promotion is called batsugan. In fact, maybe I shouldn't say, "every so often," because it seems like it is not that uncommon at all. Show More Summary

Private York becomes Sergeant York

There are precedents stretching back through military history of people honorably circumventing the typical rank promotion system. One of these is the practice of Field Appointment or Field Promotion. A memorable example of what I'm talking about is Alvin York.. Show More Summary

Rank inflation

Inflation (per the dictionary) - a general increase in prices and fall in the purchasing value of money. So, by extension, rank inflation could be defined as a generalized increase in the cost/effort required to advance in rank, accompanied by a reduction in the value of each successive rank. Show More Summary

Meaning of kyu ranks

I've heard it said that any martial arts teacher in the world who is worth a damn could teach a newbie everything that the instructor knows about self-defense within the space of 6-8 months.. Coming up through the ranks, our teachers...Show More Summary

Rank Schmank!

I'm pretty tired of the subject of rank in martial arts, but since everyone around me seems so interested in it lately, and since people keep asking me what I think of this and that, I made a bet with myself that I could do a month's worth of posts on the topic of rank in the martial arts.. Show More Summary

Today I Injured a Kid

(Another excellent guest post from Andre Goran...) It’s only the second time my partner got seriously hurt in randori since I took up judo, and the first time in years, since I was a brown belt or earlier. It surprised me because I think of myself as a very safe opponent, but that wasn’t the case tonight. Show More Summary

Windsong Shochugeiko 2014

I just got back and started recuperating from Shochugeiko - the 2014 Summer Intensive at Windsong Dojo in OKC. Thank you, Nick, for hosting such a remarkable gathering! Not only was there an all-star lineup of instructors from Washington, Texas, and New York... Show More Summary

Karl E. Geis obituary

This is the text of Karl's obituary that made the rounds on e-mail... It is with great sorrow that we report the departure of Karl Edwin Geis from this world on April 7th, 2014, after succumbing to a prolonged battle with cancer. Mr....Show More Summary

Sensei Dave's "Law of the foot"

Super important, foundational heuristics... Keep your weight off your heels - you have one ACL per knee - keep it that way! Be last - always be last to put your foot down Point that foot where you want to go Put your weight over that...Show More Summary

Sensei, what would it take?

Most of us, when we start teaching martial arts either use mostly the structure and drills and syllabus - the scope and sequence that our teachers used. Or else perhaps we have some other ideal and we rearrange things and maybe re-work one or two things, but I think for the most part most of us teach mostly the way we learned.. Show More Summary


We are indoctrinated from day-1 in judo and aikido that the pre-requisites to doing a technique include... you have to have uke off-balanced (kuzushi) you have to move yourself to the right place (tsukuri) Most everyone buys into this...Show More Summary

Shikaku and technique vs. principle

A lot of instructors (including me) like to say that our arts are "principle-based instead of technique-based." That the ideas behind the techniques are more important than the techniques themselves. But that can be hard to implement because we all have a deep abiding love for cool techniques. Show More Summary

Recent Posting Activity


Posts on Regator

Related Blogs

Copyright © 2015 Regator, LLC