What is Karate

"True karate is this: that in daily life one's mind and body be trained and developed in a spirit of humility, and that in critical times, one be devoted utterly to the cause of justice."
--Gichin Funakoshi

Karate can also be described as a martial art or fighting method which makes use of hands, feet, elbows, knees, and other body parts as tools of self-defense, involving a variety of techniques, including blocks, strikes, evasions, throws, and joint manipulations. Karate practice is divided into three aspects: kihon (basics), kata (forms), and kumite (sparring).

The word karate is a combination of two Japanese characters: kara, meaning empty, and te, meaning hand; thus, karate means "empty hand." Adding the suffix "-do" (pronounced "doe"), meaning "way," i.e., karate-do, implies karate as a total way of life that goes well beyond the self-defense applications. In traditional karate-do, we always keep in mind that the true opponent is oneself.

The Maine Shotokan Karate Association
is composed of dedicated individuals seeking a common goal - perfection of character through physical training and mental discipline. Students are taught to improve not only their physical skill, strength, and endurance, but also self-discipline, control, confidence, and respect for others. We at the Maine Shotokan Karate Association are very pleased to offer you an opportunity to join our classes in the study of Karate.

"More is expected of a Shotokan person."

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