Recently, and thanks to ongoing efforts from our friends at RSKarate and Kanzenkai, karate students from HMA Cambridge had the honour of training with #1 ranked and current WKF -84kg World Champion, Gogita Arkania.
The road to becoming a champion is long and arduous to be sure…watch his final world championship fight! Gogita’s training and competition schedule is non-stop and looks like a rock star’s world tour schedule. However, as we often say in classes (quoting from Musashi)…the way (to success, the top, etc) is in the training and you can only fight the way you train.
So, from watching the champ, how should we train?
SENSEI ARKANIA TIP#1: The Way is in the DETAILS
Gogita’s classic fighting style is heavily rooted in clean, old school, competitive karate. And, not surprisingly, the training sessions began with basic techniques. No flash, just honest, hard practice of proper biomechanics that will ensure, when the time comes, your technique will land on target and score. Remember that when you practice in any program…start with GOOD KIHON.
SENSEI ARKANIA TIP#2: There is No Substitute for ATHLETICISM
Arkania fights in -84kgs (one division away from the heaviest) but he moves like an agile middleweight! It was unbelievable to see how dynamic AND FAST he was. And then, when you saw the warm up, speed drills, and conditioning, you realized why. Good fighters need to be flexible and explosive from ANY position and everyone worked…forward, backward, left, right, up, down, prone, supine, rolling, you name it…it got worked! So, when working things like front rolling and cart wheeling, remember, it’s not just your Sensei’s love for gymnastics, we’re building athletes!
SENSEI ARKANIA TIP#3: …INTENSITY
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Gogita is INTENSE in his training…all the time. I think some of the students were shocked by how much he put into each technique when simply demonstrating for the class. If he threw it, it was unbelievably explosive. And that’s how you get better… do nothing which is of no use.
The best thanks to any instructor is to take what you have learned, practice with intent, and apply it. So students in competitive programs should get to work! 🙂
Thanks again to Sensei Arkania and our circle of dojos who are working together to build tomorrow’s champions! Train hard and see you in the dojo.
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