Welcome to the December 2013 Special Christmas Edition of THE SHOTOKAN WAY.
2013 has been an interesting year for shotokan karate around the world. In fact, 2013 has been a year of change for the Martial Arts in general. One thing that has not changed however is karate’s place in terms of Olympic recognition. For the third time (2005, 2009 and 2013), karate failed to be accepted by the International Olympic Committee. Whilst this news saddened a huge proportion of the karate community, many revelled in knowing the clutches of sporting domination were held at bay for short while longer.
One karateka that has enjoyed the gems of a full budo karate journey is the focus of this edition’s main feature, an Interview with Malcolm Dorfman Part 1. It was eight years ago that Malcolm Dorfman was first interviewed for The Shotokan Way. At that time, TSW was very much in its infancy, but Malcolm and a list of other very senior karateka kindly gave their time and shared their experiences with our readers. In many ways, Malcolm and these other exceptional martial artists helped set the tone and standard of the magazine. I have always been fascinated with Malcolm’s karate story, not only the - rarely paralleled - experiences of his youth, but also the fact he has been integral to the development and propagation of shotokan karate in South Africa. To this day, Malcolm remains steadfast in his obsession with Budo karate and the commitment to ensuring it continues to flourish. Throughout the course of this new exclusive interview, completed over the course of the past year, Malcolm enabled me to indulge my technical appetitive, answering questions on a range of issues. This opened technical discussion related to many of the key fundamental principles of Mikio Yahara’s karate. The interview, at times, therefore also delves into issues very much at the core of Budo karate including the concept of ikken hisatsu. I must say a sincere thanks to Sensei Dorfman for being so generous with his knowledge and time. I hope you all thoroughly enjoy this interview.
The second instalment is an Interview with Kiego Abe, Chief Instructor of the JSKA. I had the pleasure of attending a very small private session with Sensei Abe a few years back, and also a much bigger Seminar in London. A stickler for detail, this interview, conducted by Arijit Chakraborty in India, gives readers an insight into the thoughts and opinions of a JKA legend.
The final instalment in this December edition comes in the form of my article ‘Taking one step at a time’. In this article I discuss a concerning growing trend for many karateka following kata competition. Whilst I am sure there will be those that disagree with me, I’m sure this will inspire a degree of debate.
Before concluding this editorial, I must draw your attention to the NEW issue of SKM now available to buy. I encourage karateka to subscribe to this excellent magazine!
May I wish you a very happy Christmas, and I look forward to publishing new material in 2014 with you all in January.