Karate - The Basics



Basic Blocks

Handan Makki (Downward Block)

Fold left hand across to right shoulder, right arm under left (quick movement), step forward with left leg into forward stance, as foot touches floor deliver downward black with left arm, pulling right arm back to side, forearm positioned parallel to the floor (Fig 1 & 2), and left hand should be approximately 4” – 6” from knee, just outside of body line. Foot position as in Fig 3, although if possible you can have the rear foot facing forward as much as possible.  If you can achieve this then as long as the rear heel is on the floor it makes it very difficult to bend the rear leg. This leg should be locked as straight as possible.  Legs should be approximately shoulder width apart and 1.5 - 2 times that in length. It is very important to use full hip twist as you deliver the block – this will give greater strength and power, particularly when blocking a kick.

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Fig 1
Fig 2
Fig 3


Sudo Makki (Knifehand Block)

From ready stance - twist body to the right, fold left hand to right side of face (Palm facing face) Fig 4, right hand moves back and slightly upwards (palm facing away from face), step forward with left leg into back stance, as foot touches floor deliver block bring arms across body, turning hands so that the left palm faces forward and the right faces up resting over the solar plexus.  The blocks power comes from keeping the arm bent and blocking, using the shoulder muscles.  Heels should be in line, back foot at 90 degrees to front foot Fig 7.


Fig 4



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Fig 5
Fig 6
Fig 7



Yop Makki (Side Block)

From ready position – fold left hand to right hip and right hand to left shoulder – step forward into front stance, as front foot lands pull left hand across body to block with outside of arm- hand approximately level with left shoulder – pull right hand across body back to side parallel with the floor


Fig 8
Fig 9
Fig 10


Chungdan Makki (Midsection Block)

From ready stance – Lift both arms across the body to the left hand side, hands level with the shoulder Fig 11, elbows tight against body, step forward with left leg, as you land twist body forward bringing left arm into centre of body, right back to side parallel with floor, blocking with the inside of the arm.


Fig 11
Fig 12
Fig 13



Chukyo Makki (Rising Block)

From ready stance – fold left arm inside right arm, both fists, palms facing body, Fig 14, step into forward stance, as you land left arm drives up and twist so that fist rotates 180 degrees and blocks above the head, slightly in front, right hand returns to right side, parallel with the floor. Fig 15


Fig 14
Fig 15
Fig 16






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