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Makiwara Monday – Best of 2019

The picture shows the opener picture for the Makiwara Monday - Best of 2019. On the picture is Hirokazu Kanazawa doing a Gyaku-Zuki on the Makiwara.

The Makiwara Monday has become a fixed institution in our weekly Shotokan calendar. Many fans have sent us fantastic videos last year. Beside that we also found some very nice and entertaining makiwara videos on the internet. We do not want to withhold these from you and present you in this Makiwara Monday – Best of 2019 the best videos from the last year.


The hip rotation is key! With Aidos Underbayev

Our friend, Aidos Underbayev from Kazakhstan, has sent us an excellent Makiwara Monday video. It displays the importance of hip rotation. As you can see, Aidos places a lot of emphasis on an initiating hip rotation. The hip gives the impulse to move the upper body and then the arm. More technically speaking: Big mass, the upper body, moves the small mass, the arm and the fist. The rhythm of hip, upper body, and arm (or leg) is the foundation of Shotokan. Good job, Aidos!

How to Begin with Makiwara Training? By Kousaku Yokota

Every journey has to begin at some point. This counts also for Makiwara training. In order to make your start easier we present you a introduction for beginners video by Shihan Yotoka today. He gives you a simple tutorial how to find your way into Makiwara training.

The Samurai: Masahiko Tanaka

Masahiko Tanaka has become famous for his strength and fighting spirit. Both brought him the nickname “The Samurai”. The following Makiwara video gives you a glimpse how he became the fighter he was: stoic and unprecedented tough training. True spirit!

Let the Body Do the Work! With Dr. Jeff Christian

Sometimes, a different perspective on a very well known issue reveals completely new insights. Jeff Christian from the United States sent us a good example of this principle. His excellent Makiwara Monday video was shot from below. This angle gives you a very good perspective to understand that the body and not the arm does the work during a Shotokan tsuki.

As you can see: Jeff is not using the muscle power of his arm to hit the wooden board. Instead, he is using his upper body to initiate and accelerate his arm. Thus, his arm becomes like a whip. This whiplash-effect creates force without consuming much energy. The board behind the Makiwara reveals how much strengths Jeff can generate with his tsuki technique. Very good job, Jeff!

Keep it simple: Just Gyaku-Zuki!

Like for any other routine, also for Makiwara counts the saying: keep it lean, keep it clean, and repeat as many times as possible. The following video gives you a good impression how to execute this rule.

Okinawa Masters

The Makiwara is a very classical training tool that has already been utilized by the early Okinawa masters. Its development is an exciting part of Karate history. In order to make the study of the history of the Makiwara a little bit more tempting for you, we have found the following footage from Okinawa for you. Enjoy, Osu!

Tetsuhiko Asai

One of the most famous grand masters of Shotokan was late Tesuhiko Asai. He was not just one of the most creative and agile Karakteka who ever lived. He had also an incredible punching power due to rigorous Makiwara training. As you can see in the following video he not just trained straight gyaku-tsukis but also mawashi tsukis and shuto uchi. Let inspire yourself by this true legend.

The Powerful Katsu Tiru!

Katsu Tiru is a powerhouse. He shows his very fast and powerful punches in this striking Makiwara Video.

Beyond Gyaku-Zuki! By Michael Ehrenreich

Most of the time, the Makiwara is used to train Gyaku-Zuki. In this video Michael Ehrenreich shows how versatile Makiwara training can be. Especially short distances strikes can be trained very efficient on the Makiwara.

Endurance with Keigo Shimizu

Like water, that washes a hollow into a stone, Makiwara training has to be conducted constantly and with endurance. It is not a matter of power but rather of replication. Just have a look how our advisory board member Keigo Shimizu does it.

Kizami-Zuki with Jonas Correia

In the Makiwara Monday section we always try to present you astonishing and surprising footage. Today, we have a very unique video: It shows a Kizami-Tsuki routine at a Makiwara. Usually, the punch of choice at the Makiwara is a Gyaku-Zuki. But Jonas Correia from Newark, New Jersey, who sent us this exceptional video, chose to go with a Kizami-Tsuki. Due to the fact that Kizami-Tsuki are often utilized in Kumite we highly recommend to train it on the Makiwara also.

Shuto Uchi with Katsu Tiru

This Monday, we present you again an excellent video by Katsu Tiru from Shuhari Shotokan Karate Association Katsu. We have said it before: Gyaku-Zukis are the most common drill at the Makiwara. However, there are many more that can be done. For instance, Shoto Uchi. Katsu shows some simple ways to train them.

A Variety of Punches. By Michael Ehrenreich

Today, he shows his skills in another fantastic video. Still deep in the woods, he applies a huge variety of punches on the Makiwara. Please, bear in mind that Michael Ehrenreich is an expert in self-defense and has been doing such drills for years. You should, therefore, do not be too tough on your fingers, palms, and knuckles.

Which Kata is this? With Noah Legel

In opposite to many other Karateka, Noah applies a combination on the Makiwara. We highly encourage you to do that. This is especially important for training Katas. By the way, which Kata does Noah execute on the Makiwara? Do you recognize it? Write your answers in the comment section.

Female Power with Filiz Kemir

Today, we present you the first female video in the Makiwara Monday section. We are very glad that Filiz provided us with the video. Because she has a excellent technique and a powerful zuki. Her secret lies in a well executed hip rotation.

Mae Geri! By Kristian Sundvor

Kristian Sundvor from the JKA Norway allowed us to share his very nice Makiwara video, where he executes a Mae Geri drill. We think, Keris are too seldomly trained at the Makiwara. Therefore, we want to encourage you to send us Keri-Makiwara videos. Until then become inspired by Kristians routine.

Warm up with Michelle Enfield

A Makiwara can also be a devise for warm up. How? Sensei Michelle Enfield is going to show you. Caution: The background music is very special!

Having fun with Koichiro Okuma

No comment. Just watch!😁

The Toughest of them all! But also smart?

Some people like it tough. The Wado-Ryu Karateka in this video refuses to use a Makiwara covered with rope or leather. Instead, he punches the plain board and creates the impression as if his knuckles were made of steel. On the other hand, the power behind his Zukis appears to be devastating. However, the question arises: Is it smart to train this way? For how many years can somebody can train like that before the fingers are ruined? Or is it necessary to train like that? What do you think? Write us a comment.

Makiwara Training with Ippei Kamae

Today, we are going to present you an excellent Makiwara video. Ippei Kamae shows us how to use the hip rotation in order to gain more speed and power. The video was recorded after a training session with Sensei Taniyama in the JKA Honbu Dojo. Enjoy!

Kristian Sundvor in Action

Kristian Sundvor shows us his Makiwara routine today. His strong legs and hip-rotation generate a lot of power. He depicts a great example for the importance of lower-body conditioning.

Women Power with Angelica Puertas

Angelica Puertas from Venezuela kindly allowed us to share her Makiwara workout video.

To find women, who train at the Makiwara, is a difficult task. We can only speculate about the reasons and would like to encourage more women to use this devise.

However, Angelica enjoys the training and has an incredible punch. She moves her arm in a strait forward direction initiated by a strong but relaxed hip-rotation. Her arm is fully stretched when it reaches the target. Thus, the punch becomes very powerful with low effort. And it looks just elegant. Oss!

Legendary Morio Higaonna

Morio Higaonna is the grandmaster of Goyu-Ryu Karate and a real powerhouse. He owes this incredible power his rigorous Makiwara workout. His stoic punching on devises like the Makiwara created his robust physic. Become inspired and watch the following video!

Classic with Hiroshi Shirai

Just watch!

How to Train Speed With a Makiwara?!

We found this very interesting video on youtube. Unfortunately, it is in Portuguese. However, what do you think about it and his approach?

Full Power with Jonas Correia

Jonas correia is a power house. His makiwara workout shows were his power comes from. How many times a week do you train on the makiwara per week?

Pure Elegance with Aidos Underbayev

We already had an incredible video of Aidos Underbayev in our Makiwara Monday section. Aidos has an excellent style. His hip ritation an technique is splendid. Efficient, smooth, straight forward – to put it simple: pure elegant. Oss!

Post Training Workout with Martin Hesse

Some do stretching, some do makiwara training to cool down. Martin Hesse does the second.

Punching Power with Mirjam Widmer

To become a serious karateka, one needs to toughen and strengthen the knuckles, wrists, and forearms. This goes for men as well as women. Mirjam Widmer, who took part in our series Women of Shotokan a few weeks ago, shows you how to do it right.

Irimi with Prof. Dr. Wolf Herbert

Okinawa Style

In comparison to Shotokan Karate, Okinawa Karate is different in many respects. Besides the higher stances especially the execution of punches differ from Shotokan.

While Shotokan prefers strikes from a long distance Okinawa Karate focuses on shorter distances and punches. To make them as devastating as long punches the shorter Okinawa strikes must executed in a different way. The whiplash-effect, that also becomes more and more popular in Shotokan, is the essential ingredient for Okinawa strikes. To train this effect, the Makiwara is the right device as you can see in the following video.

Okinawa Style II with Tatsuya Naka

Last week, we presented you the first makiwara Okinawa style video. We want to proceed with our small journey to Okinawa this Monday.

This time, we present you a video about Minoru Higa who was been visited by Tatsuya Naka during his great journey of karate. Master Higa teaches Naka Sensei his devastating punch at the makiwara. He also goes into the differences between Okinawa tsukis and Shotokan. For all makiwara enthusiasts, this kuro-obi world video is a must watch.

Efficient Technique with Rachel Cardoso

Rachel Cardoso shows us today that smoothness and power belong together. Her soft but very dynamic hip-rotation generates a very strong momentum and thus a very strong gyaku-zuki. Try it yourself and relax your pelvis.

Snap Plus Kime with Dr. Jeff Christian

Most karateka would agree that extending the arm is the most important part of a punch. At the end of the motion there must be kime, complete focus. Without kime, the punch will not be effective.

But when a punch combines speed and kime, and then finishes by pulling back the punching hand, the punch becomes a focused strike, not simply a push at a target.

As you can see in the following video by Jeff Christian his pull-back motion creates a powerful whiplash-effect on the Makiwara. Although he hits the board in a relaxed way, he transmits the energy like a shock wave.

What about you? Do you snap back your fist during Makiwara training? Do you extend the punch and stick the target? Or do you practice both?

Uraken with Ippei Kamae

Ippei Kamae loves makiwara training. According to himself he does everyday 1,000 punches on the wooden board when he trains at the JKA Honbu Dojo. Witnesses from abroad have confirmed that.

In this video he shows us his uraken routine. Mostly karateka only train zukis at the makiwara. However, uraken can be a great technique in kumite and self-defense. Therefore, let yourself become inspired by Ippei’s makiwara monday uraken workout.