The Martial Arts way begins and ends with courtesy. Therefore, be properly and genuinely courteous at all times.
Sparring, also called kumite, is used to train the application of the various techniques within a fighting situation. Sparring is usually an important part of training in most Kyokushin organizations, especially at the upper levels with experienced students.
In most Kyokushin organizations, hand and elbow strikes to the head or neck are prohibited. However, kicks to the head, knee strikes, punches to the upper body, and kicks to the inner and outer leg are permitted. In some Kyokushin organizations, especially outside of a tournament environment, gloves and shin protectors are worn. Children often wear head gear to lessen the impact of any kicks to the head. Speed and control are instrumental in sparring and in a training environment it is not the intention of either practitioner to injure his opponent as much as it is to successfully execute the proper strike. Tournament fighting under knockdown karate rules is significantly different as the objective is to down an opponent. Full-contact sparring in Kyokushin is considered the ultimate test of strength, endurance, and spirit.
Masutatsu Oyama (Sosai) summerized his Martial Arts philosophy in 11 mottoes. Well known as the Zayu no Mei Juichi Kajo, which are central in his teaching. Many of these hold very practical application even today. Most beginners don not pay enough attention to these “rules”.
1. The Martial Arts way begins and ends with courtesy. Therefore, be properly and genuinely courteous at all times.
2. Following the Martial Way is like scaling a cliff – continue upwards without rest. It demands absolute and unfaltering devotion to the task at hand.
3. Strive to seize the initiative in all things, all the time guarding against actions stemming from selfish animosity or thoughtlessness.
4. Even for the Martial Artist, the place of money cannot be ignored. Yet one should be careful never to become attached to it.
5. The Martial Way is centred on posture. Strive to maintain correct posture at all times.
6. The Martial Way begins with one thousand days and is mastered after ten thousand days of training.
7. In the Martial Arts, introspection begets wisdom. Always see contemplation on your actions as an opportunity to improve.
8. The nature and purpose of the Martial Way is universal. All selfish desires should be roasted in the tempering fires of hard training.
9. The Martial Arts begin with a point and end in a circle. Straight lines stem from this principal.
10. The true essence of the Martial Way can only be realised through experience. Knowing this, learn never to fear its demand.
11. Always remember: in the Martial Arts, the rewards of a confident and grateful heart are truly abundant.