Keeping with tradition (JKA)
 
An increasing number of karate organizations have established weight classes and a point system for tournaments, giving karate a sport-like status. In fact, more and more, the art of karate is being made into a popular competitive sport.Some people hope to make it part of the Olympics, just like judo.

At the JKA, we are not opposed to this trend, but we are concerned by what it presages for the future of karate. We believe that "sportifying" karate is incompatible with its true spirit it keeps the form to an extent, but discards the essence. True karate is a way of life, not a sport or competition.

The purpose of a competition (kyogi) is to win. So there are weight classifications to make it more "fair," and a rule-based point system for keeping score. The problem is that those rules are often arbitrarily changed. But not at the JKA. Our tournaments are all shiai ("matches"). The goal is not to win, but to pit ones skills against anothers, thereby testing ones progress and techniques. JKA karate ultimately attempts to defeat the opponent with one blow. Either you down the opponent or the opponent downs you there are no points to be gained along the way. Each match has a clear "winner," but winning itself is not the final objective.

The only goal is to apply ones finest skills to the best of ones ability.
This is our way.

So what is the future of JKA karate? The same tradition we have maintained for over half a century. The JKA has never changed its fundamentals or rules. The inseparable trinity; kihon, kata and kumite, leading to kime - remain essentially unchanged, although constantly refined. JKA karate is completely natural, not arbitrarily crafted for use in a point-based match.

As the Keeper of Karates Highest Tradition, we will continue to pass on the full power and the full depth of the spiritual dimensions that underlie our art. Our tournaments shall remain as shiai, opportunities for each individual karate-ka to test his or her progress. And we will continue with our mission to ensure that the true essence of karate-do is understood and practised throughout the world.