On Saturday 20th January the ESKA Hitchin dojo held it’s first post grading course of 2024.  The course was run by Sensei Paul Grimsey (7th dan) and looked at an introduction to using the short staff weapon, which is also known as a “jo” in Japanese.  

Staffs around the length of 4″ (appox 1.2 meters) in length are termed “jo” and staffs around the length of 6″ (approx 1.8 meters) in length are termed “bo”.  We were excited to host students and instructors from Duxford, Ickleford, Knebworth and Stevenage and everyone came away with some new knowledge.  

The course started with some basic movements, which could be applied to either jo, or bo and then quickly incorporated them into the taikyoku shodan.  These initial movements related to basic blocking and attacking motions to get everyone familiar with the feel of the staff and get the coordination.  

As the course progressed we included move movements so that heian shodan could be performed.  Towards the end of the course, the emphasis moved more towards jo only and how this weapon could be used to simulate moving an oppenents limb, or restraining them.  

Some bunkai demonstrations were provided in order to help the students understand how the jo movements related to the applications. The final kata using the jo was heian nidan, which included a mixture of basic movements and simulated locks.

We aim to run further courses after each grading this year.  Please follow our Facebook page for these future announcements: www.facebook.com/hitchinkarate

Future Post Grading Courses

(dates and times tbd)

  • Jo Staff – Part 2
    • A continuation of Part 1 of the course, using heian sandan, heian yondan and heian godan.  More intricate movements will be included and the course will also include   partnered bunkai work (without weapons) to better understand how the jo is used to simulate certain parts of the kata.
  • Tai Chi and Karate – Part 1
    • The course will focus on breathing and structure, using tai chi principles to enhance your karate.
  • Tai Chi and Karate – Part 2
    • The course will focus on speed and power generation, building on foundations from part 1.  

Pictures

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