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Do you want to jump higher in your
karate kata? If you practice a style that has a kata with jumps; for example in
Unsu or Chatan Yara Kushanku or Superimpei, Empt or Kanku Sho, the
list goes on. There are so many different kata where you are required to jump and the
higher and more powerful that jump is, the more your kata will pop. So the
question is; how can we increase the height of our jumps in kata? Today I want
to teach you the three secret steps of jumping higher in kata no matter what
style you practice. Because it’s all about biomechanics. If you have two arms
and two legs the secret to jumping higher will always be the same. But first, we
need to start with understanding how to land – and that’s what all of the Olympic
athletes do. You can’t be expected to perform and jump and fly around, without
understanding how to safely land or fall first.
So the first exercises is this, just follow me over here. I want you to stand in one end
of your dojo with your knees slightly bent. And from here, you swing your arms
and you jump. And then try to land like I just did – with your feet and knees
pointed in the same direction. And it should be silent, so not a loud “BOOM” like
that. Instead try to be like a cat, like that. And then use your arms to find
stability and balance as you land. It should be a pretty soft landing so try
to land on the front part of your foot and not the heel. One more time.
So I jump, and quiet landing. Then all you do is jump from one end of the dojo
to the other. Once you understand how to land, then we can start talking about the
actual jump. Let’s go back. Step number 1 for a high jump is the knee raise. Meaning, you need to lift one knee as high as humanly possible. Because this
will help you with the liftoff so you can get a really powerful and high jump.
So, the first exercise is this: lift your knee and then walk, and lift the other
knee, and walk and lift, and lift, and lift and just go from one end of the dojo to
the other. Try to do that knee raise and high as powerful as possible. Then we
move on to step 2. Once you’ve mastered the knee raise, the second part of the
jump is this leg; your supporting leg which needs to push off immediately after
you lift your knee. So practice that. Easy. Right? And that’s all you do. You combine step
number one with step number two. Now we move on to the third step, which is
lifting your supporting leg after you push off. So, step one, step two, then I
can’t really show you guys this in slow motion, I have to go a bit faster now. You
lift the leg. The supporting leg which you just used to push off from the
ground with. And then remember how to land correctly, safely. One more. One more. Got it? Those are the three steps of
jumping high in kata, including how to land. And then of course,
the last part is putting all of this into any type of kata – which means that
you might need to add a kick in the air or you might need to land in some type
of certain way depending on your style. Let me just show you an example. So… in this direction here. (JUMPS). If I play that
for you in slow motion, you can see how I apply these three exact steps to the
jump. And that’s it! These three steps will help you jump higher in kata, no
matter what style our kata you do. But – if you practice traditional karate, then
don’t be sad if your jump is not super high. Because you should know that the
original purpose of jumping was not to jump high, but to drop quickly. Because
the “bunkai”, the practical application of these different types of crazy jumps,
is actually to trip or do a takedown or throw your opponent down; what we call a “sutemi waza” in Japanese – a sacrificing technique. And that’s it for today. Train
hard, good luck and fly high!


  1. Thanks for your awesome comments! 😁 Visit my website to learn more about my training, books, articles, videos etc: 👍

  2. Can you make a video on training methods you learned from Inoue Yoshimi sensei? Specifically on how to get that crisp relaxed speed vs. speed created through tension?

  3. Your videos are awesome! I'm from Brazil, my english is not too good, but i can understand what you talk (cause you talk too much clear), i learn too much with your videos! Thank you so much! Oss!!!

  4. I use to always do this practice when I had karate practice for shotokan where I would do jumping knee lifts across the dojo. Was one of my favorite thing to do when I used to practice, just instead of practicing for jumping, it was to try and move your feet in sync with your hands since most times my punch would reach the target before my feet does. While jumping and lifting our knees to our chest, we would also do a straight punch with it.

  5. srry sir I am a low rank than u but sir I am a yellow belt . But according to systema
    jumping reduces our speed actually we have to move fast on the ground that seems like we are jumping .

  6. There are no jumps in wing chun, as far as I know. But I think that not knowing how to move the body in all the possible ways, is like to put a limit on myself. Jumping can be useful even outside a combat situation, I think.
    Better to start training this, thanks for the explanation!

  7. Been selected for a competition and i’m doing team, pairs and individual kata and i’m doing the blue belt kata so this was really helpful, thanks for this video!

    update: i got 1st place in individual kata

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