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Paul Herbert 5th Dan
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Best Karate Volume 1 - Comprehensive Karate

M. Nakayama

This is almost a compressed version of ‘Dynamic Karate’ by the same author, and is very worthwhile for any Shotokan Karateka. Many of the pictures are of Nakayama himself.

At the beginning of the book, there’s a little introduction into the world of Karate at the time when the book was written, and there’s a brief scientific insight into certain topics such as breathing and muscular contraction. All of this is very interesting, and makes for valuable reading.

The book can be broken down into three stages. The Kihon, Kata and Kumite, and all three are briefly looked at here.

The first section, Sensei Nakayama demonstrates with several partners, briefly illustrating the function and usage of many of the karate techniques. It’s through this book and ‘Dynamic Karate’, you see exactly why Master Nakayama is considered the Master that he is.    

Each of the techniques demonstrated accompanies a small description about some of the technical points, although it is not as in-depth as ‘Dynamic’. As a quick reference resource though, this book can’t be faulted. 

It is in fact Osaka who performs all of the Kata in the book. He is considered one of the best Karate technicians, and within this book, his technique is at its best.

There’s a brief section on Kumite, although this book should really be viewed as a small introduction into the rest of the Best Karate Series.

This is an excellent book, with great photos of some of the best Karate-Ka from the JKA, and although it contains little textual information, this book is very useful.

Mark Thompson

Date: 4/2/2006