…Fundamental to the improvement of one’s karate technique is the acquisition of correct and balanced form.
Stance, as a term, must be thought of with regard to the lower part of the body. For techniques to be fast and accurate, powerfully and smoothly executed, the stance must be strong and stable.
In karate, stance refers to the position of the lower body, the hips and the legs, which literally carry the upper body. Thus techniques are at their best when form is at the optimum. The moment when this is important is the instant in which a technique is executed. Good form is not rigid. Over concentration on maintaining a firm and stable position will result in loss of mobility, which is necessary for the succeeding movement.
Requirements of Good Stance
The basis of executing a technique is correct stance plus balance and the harmonious coordination of parts of the body, and all must work together at the same time. In this way, techniques become fast and powerful. The delicate control that is required depends on and is guided by good stance.
Classification of Stances
Stances can be divided into two types according to the way the knees are used in relation to the center of gravity.
Outside tension stance, the knees are pressed strongly outward from the mid line connecting the body’s center of gravity and the floor, as in Zenkutsu dachi, Shiko dachi and Kokutsu dachi.
- Inside tension, the knees are twisted inward, as in Sanchin dachi, Neko ashi dachi and Naifanchi dachi.
The Important Points
Spreading the Knees
Imagine a line connecting the knees and extending on outward to the side. Spread the knees strongly outward on the extended line.
Knees and Toes
Whatever the stance, and the toes of each leg should point in the same direction.
Knees and Ankles
Knees and ankles must be bent sufficiently and strongly.
The entire surface of the soles should be in reliable contact with the floor. The feeling is that of strong adhesion.
Position of the Hips
According to the stance, the position of the hips must be accurately differentiated.
Center of Gravity
For strength and stability, it is necessity to have the feeling that the connecting the navel and the anus is as short as possible.
The height of the center of gravity is also a factor. The lower the center of gravity, the more stables the stance.