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John Burke

Devon, United Kingdom

John Burke is a British Karate-ka whose investigations into the art have seen him travel across the world seeking information and training. His interest has evolved over more than 30 years of Karate and other arts. His practical applications are taught in a straightforward manner in his DVDs, Books, and articles. He teaches seminars across the UK and internationally, and his free video clips can be found each week on

Also known as Taikyoku Shodan, this fundamental kata features few techniques, and yet the possibilities are endless as to the self defence applications possible. This volume lays out the uses for embusen, turns, low-blocks, the hikite hand, and the mid-level lunge punch.

Also known as Pinan Godan. No "jumping over a bo staff" here. Just how to use the moves close in against an opponent using realistic kinds of attack. Locks, throws, strikes.

Naihanchi. Not stepping along the narrow paths between paddy fields. Not fighting with your back to a wall (though it could be used that way). Instead, see why side-ways stepping is vital for self-defence, and why you WOULD want to sit in a low stance in a real fight

Passai. Supporting hands and blocking-but-facing-the-wrong-way explained. Here we can see why stepping into a cross-legged stance would be useful, and why a series of turning blocks leaves attackers incapacitated.

The "Strange hands" kata, and why those fingertip strikes are not destined for the eyes, or up the nose. See instead how this clever system marks out approriate targets on an aggressive attacker, and then accesses them in a way that makes them
nearly invisible to observers.

Tekki Nidan: The middle chapter in the Naihanchi story as told through the Shotokan system.  The close-in grappling kata that teaches how a Karate-man does a bear-hug and why keeping an enemy at the side of you is so wise.  How can such a sort kata contain so much information? 
Gankaku: Chinto.  Crane on a Rock, shown with throws, neck-wrenches, and what to do with a grappler!  This kata is normally reserved for 3rd Dan black belts.  If you want to see what "crane stance" can really be used for then this is just for you.
Jion:  Temple.  No "preparatory" positions.  No "resting postures".  Only taking each technique and showing how it can be used in realistic situations.  Providing the basis for many of the moves in the Heian family of kata, we find them here in the "right order", and the analysis reveals the fundamental rule of application.
Gekisaidai Ichi: The first kata of GojuRyu, created by Miyagi sensei.  Often seen as a beginner's exercise, here it is shown to be a powerful tool for defeating an opponent.  You don't call a Kata "Attack and Smash" for nothing, you know...?
Pressure Points in Bunkai: 1 hour of demonstration of the enhancement of knowing which pressure points a technique uses in practical kata bunkai.  Instead of looking at any one particular kata, we go through a number of moves from different kata and show how to add in that extra 10% which doesn't rely on strength. 
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