Southwest Academy of Kyokushinkai Karate

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The Spirit of Osu!

Osu is a contraction of the words: Oshi meaning "Push", and Shinobu meaning "to Endure".

It means patience, determination and perseverance. Every time we say "Osu", we remind ourselves of this.

The purpose of Karate training is to train the body. To make it strong and powerful. This is not to be approached on its own. The Body is trained by training the mind. When the mind and body is strong this in turn produces a strong spirit. Kyokushin training is very demanding. You push yourself until you think you've reached your limit. First your body wants to stop, but your mind keeps pushing you. Then your mind wants to stop, but your spirit keeps you going. You endure the pain. You persevere. That is Osu!

Kyokushin karate is not learned overnight. It takes years to properly learn the fundamentals. The basic techniques are performed thousands of times (ren ma - "alwayspolishing") until they are done by reflex or instinct, without conscious thought (mushin - "no mind"). It's easy to get frustrated by doing the same thing over and over again, especially when progress seems to be slow. To overcome that frustration and continue training takes patience and determination. That is Osu!

When answering an instruction by your Sensei, Osu! also implies an attitude of seriousness and having or showing great self control in adversity, it is said as if; "it is no trouble, I will do it!". This is Osu!


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