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Winning - Counterattacks
by Yukiyoshi Marutani & Hideharu Igaki

Those of you who have experienced Tsunami videos are probably addicted to them by now, as we are. I say "experienced" because that's exactly what the blend of images, music and commentary can best be described as: an experience.

The "Winning" series of videos featuring national coaches Marutani & Igaki are not actually what Tsunami is best known for. Most of us would consider "Shito Ryu: The Island of Budo" or "Wado Ryu: The Way of Peace and Harmony" as examples of what Tsunami excels at: producing a blend of history and technique packaged in a very professional way. The "Winning" series is certainly professionally produced and a pleasure to watch, but its objectives, to reveal the techniques and training methods of the highest level of competition fighter, are a change for Tsunami.

However, Volume 1 was an instant success, outselling all previous Tsunami releases in a few weeks. Part II, entitled "Counterattacks," is doing even better, and having seen it I can understand why. The techniques are exactly what you would expect from a former seven-time Japanese team member. Crisp, powerful, fast and undoubtedly effective-even in slow motion-they seem to come from nowhere and are gone again just as soon as they appear.

"Winning - Counterattacks" is full of useful information like its predecessor, but what will be of special interest to competitors at the national and international levels are the competition concepts and theories that are covered. Although well known to senior students of other, older martial arts, they are rarely (if ever) mentioned in the karate dojo, but are justifiably considered by most experts the keys to success or failure.

These concepts, known as Go no Sen and Sen no Sen in Japanese, are dealt with simply but thoroughly in "Winning - Counterattacks." Simply put, they give you the ability to sense exactly when your opponent is going to attack so you can attack him when he is vulnerable, as well as the ability to make him attack when you want him to. The overall message is: learn these techniques and you will control your opponent, and therefore easily beat him.

National Coaches Marutani and Igaki shine once more in this excellent production which is packed with techniques, and presented at a pace that never slackens. The image quality is excellent and the production value the best we have seen. The producers have succeeded in presenting a subject that, being purely instructional in nature, could easily have become boring, and in a way that is both exciting and informative.

The most frequently asked question in our office is how long Tsunami can maintain the quality of their first batch of shows! I have news for you: based on "Winning II," it's actually improving.

"Winning: Counterattacks"by Yukiyoshi Marutani and Hideharu Igaki. 55 minutes. Includes: Competition psychology, taking control, coordinating body movements, kicking techniques for competition, the secrets of counter-attacking, evasion, Taisabaki, Irimi, etc., throwing techniques, sparring, competition applications.

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