Kyoshi's Technique of the Week
September 25th 2000 

Hip Motion

Last week I wrote about the importance of using the lower body to power the technique. Now, I'd like to address the hip movement itself within the technique.

I believe that every technique we do in karate uses "hip".
First, by "hip" we mean the large muscles of the lower body and hip area. Obviously, the hipbone itself can not initiate movement and therefore the term "hip" does not refer to the innominate bone but rather the muscles surrounding it.

We've been encouraged by Kyoshi, especially as Black Belts, to discover how best to use the hip for ourselves as each Deshi will be slightly different due to our own body structure, etc.

However, within this overall freedom there are certain parameters that are followed. For instance, we can determine that there are two general movements of the hip and probably an infinite number of variations of their combination.

Horizontal hip

The first one we use, in the first technique of Fukyugata ichi is a 
predominately horizontal or rotational movement of the hip, dropping into zenkutsudachi first and then executing the gedanuke. Speaking to Goldenberg Sensei once, he described the movement to be one of the rear quadriceps, the obliques, and the gluteals. In that sequence.

Vertical hip

The other gross movement of the hip is a predominately vertical use of the hip. In fact, the second technique of Fukyugata ichi is one in which the hip travels almost straight up as the legs straighten, with a rotation of the hip downward at the end to drive the feet into the deck for foundation.

Other instances of vertical movement of the hip include nekowashidachi 
shutouke where, instead of upward movement as in the second technique of Fukyugata ichi, the hip drops forcefully downward to power the block.

In each instance, however, it can be seen that probably no "horizontal" hip movement is absolutely horizontal and no "vertical" hip movement is absolutely vertical. There are slight components of each overall movement within each technique and each Deshi may have more or less of the other movement in their various techniques. 

But try to adhere to the overall movements. For instance, don't try to make a nekowashidachi shutouke into a horizontal movement where the front knee sweeps sideways. Rather, drop the hip to initiate the hand movement. And don't make zenkutsudachi gedanuke into a dropping, vertical movement because the drop was supposed to happen before the gedanuke began. Drop, then rotate the hips.

Domo arigato gozaimasu,
David Baker,
Midtown Karate Dojo

ROBERT SCAGLIONE, Kyoshi, began his karate training 30 years ago in 1967. This is his 25th anniversary as a Blackbelt under Grand Master Ansei Ueshiro-Hanshi of the Shorin-Ryu Karate U.S.A. system. Kyoshi Scaglione is the Chief Administrator of the original style in the United States. He has traveled with Hanshi throughout the U.S.A. and as his representative worldwide.  Born in Brooklyn, New York in 1938, Kyoshi served in the U.S. Navy and in 1961 became a NYC Police Officer. He voluntarily worked exclusively in high crime/ high hazard areas during his entire 20 year tenure with the NYPD. He served in many assignments in all five boroughs of New York City including uniformed street cop, undercover officer and as a Detective in the elite Special Investigating Unit featured in the film "The French Connection." He led the NYPD in felony arrests many times and has numerous awards, citations and letters of commendation from Police Department officials, Federal Agencies, District Attorneys, Grand jurors and the civilian community. He retired from police service in 1981 in order to devote himself full time to the art of karate.

Kyoshi began his karate training in the NYPD. He continued his training under Sensei Terry Maccarrone-Shihan of the Hegashi Karate Dojo on Long Island, New York. He was Senior Instructor at the St. James Dojo for five years. Hanshi Ueshiro, wanting a dojo in Manhattan, asked Kyoshi to open a dojo in New York City. He founded the NYC dojo in 1977, which became the headquarters of Shorin-Ryu Karate USA several years later. After ten years, in 1987, Kyoshi relocated to Merritt Island, Florida and founded the Okinawan Karate Dojo leaving his senior student David Baker, San Dan to continue operation of the NYC dojo.

Over 125 students began their training directly under Kyoshi Scaglione and have attained blackbelt level. He continues to work closely with all his blackbelts, including the ten who have opened dojo on the mainland US, Hawaii, and in Israel. Among his students are many professionals, doctors, lawyers, military officers, police officers, business executives, artists, writers, housewives, students and children.

Kyoshi is the co-author with artist Bill Cummins, Ni Dan of "The Shorin-Ryu Karate Question and Answer Book" and has written another entitled "Building Warrior Spirit." His student David Seeger, Yon Dan, an Emmy Award winner, has produced several karate videos with Kyoshi. Kyoshi is the Editor-at-large of this 30th Anniversary journal. He has written and assisted his students in writing newspaper and magazine articles, film scripts on varied subjects, novels, and stage plays. He has appeared on national T.V. and radio, in stage productions, and at Universities and schools giving karate demonstrations and lectures on self-defense and assault prevention.  Kyoshi's four sons, Sal, Robert Jr., Dion, and Shane are all Ni Dan blackbelts.