If you’ve ever found yourself in a Boxing, Kickboxing, MMA or Muay Thai gym, then there’s a strong chance you’ll have seen the imposing line of heavy bags hanging along the edge of the room. Often worn on the outside, but still standing up to the regular punishment, waiting for you to give it your hardest shot.
Karate is possibly the most well known martial art in the world – the Japanese Ministry for Foreign Affairs estimates 50 million practitioners worldwide, whilst the World Karate Federation believes there are 100 million practitioners worldwide. Everyone either trained a bit when they were a kid, or knows someone who did. Basically every school or leisure centre has a karate club, and most people know it originated from Japan and uses a mix of strikes using the hands and feet, but we’re going to run through the brief history of Karate, and how it moved from a simple martial art to the hugely widespread art, with many different styles, we know today.
Combat sports are an ever-changing landscape of fighters, with new names popping up constantly. All fighters have heart, and all fighters have talent, yet of all the fighters who have stepped up over the years, there are some who stick in our minds, who changed the way we think about the sports we love, and who are truly inspirational to today’s generation of martial artists.