Karate Sparring/Practice Fighting (Kumite) – Japanese Terms

Goju-Ryu Karate knows a variety of different sparring situations. The most common and most often practiced are Ippon Kumite (1-step sparring) and Randori (free, soft sparring, allowing both students to practice techniques in a relaxed manner).

There are general Karate partner training guidelines that are important to follow to ensure the safety of all participants.

Ippon kumiteOne point (attack) sparring (defender blocks and counter attacks)
Jiyu ipponOne step sparring from free stance
Jiyi kumiteHard and fast controlled free style fighting
Kihon ipponBasic one step sparring
RandoriSlow and soft free style sparring with emphasis on technique
Sandan giThree movement sparring from Gekisai Kata
Sanbon kumiteThree step sparring (3 jodan, 3 chudan, 3 gedan) from Gekisai Kata
Sandan kumiteThree step three level sparring (1 jodan, 1 chudan, 1 gedan)
Sanbon zuki kumiteThree step sparring (blocking with one hand against a three punch combination)

As Goju-Ryu Karate does not have a sports aspects and thus no competition or tournament fighting, there is usually no special protective gear worn during sparring exercises. However it can be beneficial to use protective gear when particular techniques are practiced that otherwise would be difficult or unsafe to perform in partner training.