“KAMAE” means sparring stance, sometimes we refer it as “free stance” in karatedo. Normally when we stand, we will stand with four points, which represent the balls and the heels of our feet. However in sparring, with the “four-point stance” the initial stage of our body movement will slow down. Therefore, we will adopt “three-point stance” instead; the three points represent the ball and the heel of our front foot as well as the ball of our rear foot. This standing position will provide a stable stance for sparring and support a faster body movement. However, when we do sparring with footwork, we will adopt “two-point stance”; the two points are the balls of our feet. This standing position will support a swift footwork exercise in sparring and enable a much faster body movement.
We can compare a tricycle and a bicycle to appreciate the characteristics that distinguish the “three-point stance” and the “two-point stance”.