Karate is a combat fighting style, that originated in Okinawa Japan around the 19 century. Karate is a Martial Art That uses punching, kicking, elbows, throws and even some grappling submissions , just like other martial arts there are sport forms or variations of the art, like Muay Boran /and Muay Thai Kickboxing. In this case Karate Kumites are the sport side of Karate.
People Use the Martial Arts for multiple reasons, rather it be, because one wants to sharpen his mind body and spirit, compete in tournaments, or also for self defense proposes. The Martial arts is about condition and practicing traditions, and a way of life.