Karate Croydon

Karate originated in the Japanese prefecture of Okinawa. After the invasion of the Shimazu clan in 1609, weapons were banned in Okinawa. This furthered the development of unarmed combat techniques, the most prominent one being karate.

Cultural exchanges with China meant that the art was influenced heavily by many Chinese kung fu styles, particularly Fujian styles like Fujian White Crane, Five Ancestors and Gangrou Quan. Many Okinawan weapons like the nunchaku, sai, and tonfa may have originated in and around South-east Asia.

As the popularity of Karate spread throughout Japan, many different sub-styles evolved, including Shotokan, Wado-Ryu, and Kyokushinkai. Regardless of school, all Karate styles focus on strikes: punches, kicks, knee and elbow strikes, and open-handed attacks, like knife hands. Some styles also teach grappling, joint locks, restraints, throws, and pressure point attacks. Today, Karate can be taught in a variety of ways, from light to full contact, and can be taught as either a martial art or a sport. Famous practitioners include Jean Claude Van Damme (Shotokan), Wesley Snipes (Shotokan), and Sean Connery (Kyokushin).

Whilst Karate differs from Wing Chun Kung Fu in its emphasis on physical strength and body conditioning, one particular style, Goju-Ryu, shares the most similarities with Wing Chun. Apart from the harder, linear elements prevalent in all Karate styles, Goju-Ryu also teaches softer, circular movements, regarded by many as techniques closest resembling Karate’s Chinese origins.

Films like The Karate Kid really popularized the martial art, highlighting Karate’s central philosophy of constant self-betterment. Like Karate, Wing Chun also follows the same route, encouraging development in not just physical health and self-defence, but also focusing on the development of a balanced mind and character.

Our children’s classes at the Kung Fu Schools place strong emphasis on the equal development of mind, body, and spirit. We teach that a true black belt is not only proficient in the ABC of self-defence, but they also live by the code of the ABC’s of life: Attitude, Behaviour, and Character.

We run age-specific classes for children aged 4 to 6, and 7 to 12. Children aged 13 and up learn in our Adults classes. To see how Wing Chun kung fu could benefit your child, do give us a call on 0800 197 4660. We offer a free, 30-day trial for your child to come and have a go, to see what our kung fu lessons can do for them.