What is the literal interpretation of the word Karate?
This word originates from Japanese "kara"=empty + "te"=hand; so it means empty hand (no weapon). In a nutshell, karate is a martial art of Japanese origin that deals with attacks through evasive body movements and/or blocking, and counter attacks using kicks, punches and strikes. Joint locks, restraints and takedowns are also used, but to a lesser extent. People variously practice it as a form of self-defense, a way of keeping healthy and a sport.
The practice of karate is divided into three elements: kihon (basics), kata (forms) and kumite (sparring). However these three elements should not be considered separate, as they constantly overlap and rely on each other.