According to the Ashihara school ...........

Positioning is the technique of using footwork to move yourself into a suitable position to attack an opponent's weak points : his back or side. Only positioning makes possible the Ashihara karate adage of "hitting without being hit and felling without being felled."

Positioning means placing oneself at any point on an imaginary 360 degree circle drawn around the opponent at any of three distances - close, middle or long.

Ashihara Karate makes use of four basic positions:

1. left foot forward step

2. right foot forward step

3. left foot back step

4. right foot back step

Imagine your opponent attacks with a right front kick down the centre line. The safest and best position to launch your attack is to your rear right side position. If your opponent attacks with a left front kick, move to his left.

In order to get into this position, deflect his right front kick and, while stepping forward in a straight line with the left foot, pull the right foot around in a wide circle. This will bring you into a position behind the opponent.

By using the various steps, angles and changes in step length, you can move easily in response to your opponent's movements. Attack whilst positioning yourself. You have to position yourself as your opponent's attack misses you and before his recovery. For instance, in the case of a punch, position before he has the time to pull back his fist for a second strike; in the case of a kick, within the time between the impact of his kick and his foot reaching the ground. Make speed and economy of movement instinctive.

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