Shorinji Kempo is a method of self-defense, to protect yourself from the violence. In order to allow the weaker control the stronger, the techniques are logically created on the basis of dynamics and physiology. Anyone, regardless of sex and age can practice these techniques. When training together in Shorinji Kempo students do not bow to each other as in many martial arts, but instead they use the Gasso rei.
Shorinji Kempo: A Complete Martial Art
As a religion registered with the Japanese government, shorinji kempo seeks to follow in the ancient traditions espoused by the Shaolin monks — in short, unifying the mind and body through spiritual and physical development in accordance with the teachings of the Buddha. Because the art revolves around Zen meditation and Oriental medicine, it can offer students three main benefits: improved health, spiritual development and self-defense.
The self-defense component stems from the shorinji kempo’s reliance on combinations of “soft” and “hard” techniques designed to allow a weaker defender to control a stronger attacker by dynamically applying the laws of physics. That makes it perfect for women, children and people of all ages. Its curriculum can be broken down into four basic parts:
• Goho, which refers primarily to punches, kicks, hammers (non-punching hand strikes) and slashes.
• Juho, which is composed of close-contact techniques, including releases, joint locks, reverses, throws and pins.
• Seiho, or Zen acu-therapy, which offers health promotion through the prevention of illness.
• Zazen, or seated meditation, which promotes spiritual and mental development through Zen Buddhism, ultimately fostering the ability to seek a solution to conflict without unduly harming others.
Shorinji Kempo – Training the Body & Mind
Shorinji Kempo is a martial art than can be enjoyed by anyone of any age, sex or size. The techniques exploit the use of balance and specific pressure points (vital points) of the body. This means that strength is not required to perform any of the techniques.
But Shorinji Kempo goes beyond the limits of Self-defence. It’s main practice is designed to benefit it’s students in three main areas: Self-defence, improved health and spiritual development.
The physical techniques are split in to two families Juho and Goho.
Generally Goho techniques are used against an opponent who attacks with a punch, kick or strike, and Juho techniques are used when an opponent has grabbed or pinned the defender.
During his training in China, Doshin So realized that all techniques used in martial arts consist of three fundamental movements; the circular, the straight and the curved. These movements can be found in all Shorinji Kempo techniques.
In addition to these physical techniques, Shorinji Kempo teaches the practice of Seiho and Zazen Meditation.
In Shorinji Kempo it is taught that all are equal no matter what your age, sex or grade. Higher graded students and instructors are there to help each other and lower graded or new students. The lower graded and new students are encouraged to ask questions of the more senior students, and unlike some martial arts there is no problem in approaching the Sensei to ask a question. The colour of the belt signifies the amount of experience each person has, not that they are better than anyone else.