While technical prowess and physical power are essential characteristics of a martial artist, true mastery of the art comes by cultivating one’s inner strength. Here, Kenji Tokitsu—an authority on Japanese and Chinese combat arts and a respected karate teacher—shows how cultivating ki (life force) and understanding the principles of budo (the martial path of self-development) can make training in martial arts more meaningful, effective, and personally and spiritually rewarding.
Tokitsu emphasizes the mental aspects of martial arts practice including:
• The importance of ki development • Seme, or capturing your opponent’s mind • Understanding ma, the spatial relationship in combat
Studying these concepts, he explains, gives martial artists the tools to train for a lifetime and at the very highest level. Tokitsu also gives a historical and cultural survey of budo, and explains how the Western view of budo training is different than the Japanese—a perspective rarely available to Western martial artists.