"Technique rather than strength. Spirit rather than technique" - Kaicho Tadashi Nakamura
Seido Karate is a traditional Japanese style of karate founded by Kaicho Tadashi Nakamura geared towards all students regardless of age, size, gender, and physical limitations.
Seido focuses on developing each student mentally, physically and spiritually. Physical training in Seido emphasizes progressive development of strength, flexability and aerobic capacity. One of the goals of Seido karate training is to develop strong bodies, which contributes to health and a general sense of self-confidence and well-being. In addition to developing students with the highest level of physical skills, Seido aims to develop individuals of the highest moral character, individuals who can then make significant contributions to a better life in the family, the work place, and in society at large.
This goal is achieved by the integration of Zen meditation into the practice of each and every student. Seido is unique because it stresses the unity and inseparability of karate and Zen. Zen is not taught as a religion in Seido. It is a practice, i.e., seated meditation, which has no religious overtones or content. The samurai, whose lives and values gave so much to karate, strived to develop 'bushido' spirit. Today, our lives are much different from the samurai's, but the bushido spirit can still be translated into our milieu. This is not a new idea. Rather, it is a return to the origins of the martial arts. By returning to the roots of karate, it can be made extremely valuable for students regardless of their limitations.
The World Seido Karate Organization officially opened its headquarters in New York City on October 1976. It is a worldwide organization with over 150 branches in such places as Australia, France, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa, South America, and United Kingdom. Seido Karate is a traditional Japanese martial art founded by world-renowned grandmaster, Kaicho Tadashi Nakamura. “Seido” is a Japanese word that means “sincere way.” Kaicho created this style to develop complete individuals, students committed not just to improving their body, but their mind and spirit as well. In addition to developing students with the highest level of physical skills, Seido Karate aims to develop individuals of the highest character.
THE SINCERE WAY
"Sei" in Japanese means "sincere" and "do" means "way". In Seido, the belief is that karate is not just about kicking and punching, but about building the individual from within. Competition is not with others, but within yourself. Seido seeks to develop in each student a 'nonquitting' spirit. No matter what the obstacle or difficulty -- emotional, physical, financial -- though the student may be set back, they will never be overcome by any of these problems. The sincere practice of karate can impress this idea into the spirit. This is the modern interpretation of the bushido spirit.
In today's day and age, Karate has evolved into a competition-centered sport. While martial arts does train individuals to engage in kumite, or sparring, it is not everything that martials arts has to offer. Kaicho Nakamura and his over 50 years of commitment to the study and practice of martial arts, founded Seido Karate to move away from the competitive aspect and to focus on the most important part of martial arts: the training of body, mind and spirit together in order to realize the fullness of human potential. According to Kaicho, this is the universal
truth to karate-do.
Physical training consists of kihon (basic kicking, punching, blocking), kata (forms), self-defense strategies, and when the student has obtained an intermediate belt level, kumite (sparring). Seido Karate is beneficial for people looking for:
A safe and supportive environment to be challenged and grow spiritually, mentally, and physically
A way to take part in group organized events such as annual karate retreats, beach training, tournaments.
A way to train focus and mental clarity.
Meditation or zazen is performed at the beginning and end of every class to clear the mind and achieve a calm, focused state. Just as practicing karate will strengthen and discipline your body, practicing meditation will strengthen and discipline your mind. And just as a strong body without an equally strong mind is limited, karate is incomplete without meditation. When an individual has a well-developed body and a clear mind working as one, their actions flow honestly, powerfully, and appropriately.
LOVE, RESPECT AND OBEDIENCE
The official icon of Seido Karate, the plum blossom emblem, consists of the five-petaled blossom, which is Kaicho Nakamura's family crest, with three circles within each other representing Seido's three founding principles: love, respect, and obedience.