Hojo Undois the term used for techniques and exercises that are not required for the Grading Syllabus, but are necessary to practice for the benefit of your karate.
Please note that the conditioning is only practised by adult students and not by the juniors (children), as their young bodies are still developing and such exercises could damage their developing joints, bones and tissue. Hojo Undo includes such things as special weight training using equipment such as the Chi Ichi (Shown in photo), bag/pad work, conditioning and weapons.
Other exercises are press ups on the knuckles, finger tips and the back of the wrists for conditioning the hands as well as developing the muscles. Wrist rubbing (sticky hands) and arm pounding are also practiced.
Makiwara – Bag/pad work is an exercise for the person holding the bag as well as the person hitting it. After some time conditioning the body in this way, the more advanced student will progress onto more intense conditioning of the arms, legs and torso and also using a striking board.
Weapons training (kobujutsu) is practiced for its benefits in strengthening fingers, grip, wrist, arms and developing supple joints in these limbs. The weapons practiced in the Sanchin-ryu Okinawan Karate Organisation are the Bo(long staff), Tonfa (T batton), Sai (short swords/daggers), Kama (sickles) and Nunchaku (flails).
Because of strict bans on carrying weapons imposed at various times in the history of Okinawa (please see section on “History”), the people developed fighting systems utilizing ordinary everyday tools of their jobs in farming and fishing. The Eiku (oar/paddle) and the Tinbe (turtle shell shield) with the Rochin (short fishing spear) are examples of the fishing trade input. There are many other such weapons including the weighted chain and the trident.