Re: To block or not to block
I think there's been some good answers already, but here's a few addtions,
1) the word for 'block' used in the yoshinkan is yoke...from yokeru, to evade or avoid.
2) basic technique is indeed more of a block. One way of performing 'blocks' on ni techniques is to take uke's balance with the upward movement...
3) as you progress, better to think **parry**, rather than block
4) Since you are talking about a block and not a strike, can I assume you mean shomenuchi, iriminage ni? I believe on the ichi version, shite is often striking first...I'll have to check the book to see what version Shioda Sensei is doing, since I can't remember off hand. Perhaps Steven Miranda can clarify...
One last note, the yoshinkan does have a different methodology for teaching basics, so folks from other schools may have very valid suggestions, though the details might vary quite a bit. Some styles shy away from the word block completely...others think it is something that should be in the basic curriculum. Both are good, as far as I'm concerned...