Tips for Karate Sparring

It’s been a long long time since I regularly came to my karate sparring class, so I was a little worried that I would be totally beaten up today. But phew! I definitely felt my rustiness, but it turned out good.

I noticed that I had much hesitation when carrying out my moves during sparring. Here are some tips from my dojo friends to help me improve:

1. When spar with someone that I’ve never sparred before, observe how they strike and block to find patterns, and act accordingly.

2. Look at the opponent’s eyes or the triangle of shoulders and belly button, to feel where they’re going next. Do not put the attention on their actual strikes, because that will make me a reactive fighter rather than proactive.

3. No need to look for the exact opening first, then throw in strikes. Use my own strikes to open them up and then strike.

4. When I get a chance to strike, try to strike in more. Not just try to get one or two in, but four, five, six and more. Think combos.

5. When fight with bigger guys, pay attention to guarding my head, because that’s one of the places very easy for them to get to.

There are more areas I’m aware that I should improve, but I’d like to solidify these first. Sparring is fun!

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