Kyokushin Workout at the Oyama dojo, New York

When I lived in Brooklyn, NY, mid 1980's, I would wake up each morning at 5 a.m. and take the train to the Oyama Kyokushin Karate dojo. This was our special morning workout, after our regular karate class. Only the uchi deshi (live in students) and the more serious guys remained for this.The class was often conducted by Saiko Shihan Shigeru Oyama himself.

Six (6) sets of the following:

Leg stretch to the right, 30 count

Leg stretch to the left; 30 count

Split; 30 count

Squats – 30 reps

Knuckle push ups on wooden board – 60 reps

Run around the dojo


This was followed by hitting the bag; boxing combinations - jab, cross, upper cut, knee kicks.

These were amazing workouts that left us exhausted but fit and trim; in mean lean fighting condition. Highly recommended

Another one of my favorite drills was partnering up, one student wore the arm shields for middle round house kicks. As the 'attacker' kicked the 'defender' would take a step back and thus we would go all across the dojo, back and forth, constant kicking. This built leg strength, flexibility, endurance, hip strength, and was a lot of fun.

When I came to Israel I looked for a Kyokushin Karate dojo (school) but could not find one in the Jerusalem area. I eventually found Itay Gil who had trained in kick boxing and Kyokushin and in fact had done the '100 man kumite'. Although the training was not pure Kyokushin, he certainly preserved the spirit of the art: no nonsense full contact training, hard work, strong spirit, giving it everything you've got.