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Thread: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

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    Default Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    The debate will always rage on as to the usefulness of kata. I am a big believer in the use of kata to demonstrate the many aspects of form and strategic movement.
    "How", you ask "does kata teach strategic movement?"

    Well, there is really no simple answer to the casual observer, or to the people that practice kata as a requirement for belt advancement. They simply don't spend the time to really look beyond the obvious techniques.

    I relate a lot of things to the octagon as taught in Kosho Ryu becaue it presents a simple way to break down movement between 2 or more people.

    Kata is filled with evasive maneuvers that put you in a superior tactical position, one that would create a situation in which an opponent would have to strike outside or across their centre.

    A good example might be the opening movement in Naihanchi Shodan, or Pinan Shodan.
    The first impression on the opening movement of pinan shodan is that you are turning to face your opponent head on.
    What if your opponent was striking from angle 5, or from angle 7?

    One of the tricks to understanding kata for an escaping application is to take a movement and work it every way you can, punch, kick, grab, throw; and apply the movements that contain turns or changes in directions and see what happens.

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackcatbonz
    One of the tricks to understanding kata for an escaping application is to take a movement and work it every way you can, punch, kick, grab, throw; and apply the movements that contain turns or changes in directions and see what happens.
    I've lost count how many times I have said this.

    Kata is kumite.

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    I don't believe Kata teach us anything. However, Kata, I believe, is very useful.

    Since the movements of any particular kata can be interpretted in any number of ways, the movements of kata really have no meaning other than what we give them. So kata is a way to see what a student has learned and understands about movement.

    Having to memorize 30 kata for black belt is just plain ridiculus. The more memorization one has to do the less time they can spend really learning and understanding movement. Ooops. A bit off topic.

    Kata can only show a movement and the student places a meaning onto that movement. If you are exploring Escaping Arts then you can view the movements that way. And if you are exploring striking arts then you can view the movements that way.

    Kata is whatever you choose it to be. Kumite, nage, etc.


    With respect,
    John Evans

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    Kata is also a very valuable way of retaining the self-defense techniques as well as the basics.

    When I run through katas, I am doing a variety of things:

    I'm practicing my visualization skills -- visualizing where my opponent is at any given time.

    I'm practicing my flow -- doing essentially one long movement helps to learn to move from one attack/defense to another.

    I'm practicing my memory skills -- much of the art can be passed down through kata.

    And depending on the kata, I'm practicing my techniques themselves. I have katas that I practice that run through most of the self-defense techniques. I start from yellow 1 and go through 2nd brown two and I've practiced more than half of all the techniques I know. And I can do it in maybe 20 minutes or so because I don't have to stop and look at the paper to see what's next.

    Then, if i haven't had the chance to practice on a body, at least my body knows the movements.

    So in addition, I'm adding and creating muscle memory.

    --Amy
    The New Kenpo Continuum Book is now accepting submissions for volume 2. Our fabulous, ever-changing website is Sacramento Kenpo Karate.
    I'm a member of the Universal Life Church and the ULC Seminary. I'm also a Sacramento Wedding Minister and Disc Jockey
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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    Hmmm? Didn't George and I have a nice conversation on Kata here? Has it been moved or deleted? Or maybe I'm dreaming?


    -John

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    John i think big brother is censuring us,

    I guess it wasn't stimulating enough LOL

    All the best

    George

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    Mod Note:
    Posts moved to Okinawan Kempo - The Truth About Kata: Training Tool or Waste of Time
    The Truth About Kata: Training Tool or Waste of Time

    BlackCatBonz
    shawn bailey

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    In the context of Kata and movement geared toward escaping the [encounter, tactical position, etc], I think kata is a perfect for keeping all the training tools one needs in one place. You can take the same situation that all the people in the "office" know about (certain peices of the form) and then apply the different angles of the octagon to them.

    Good stuff...
    Regards,
    Walt

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    Quote Originally Posted by gakusei
    I've lost count how many times I have said this.

    Kata is kumite.
    Actually Kata is Kata and Kumite is Kumite. Both are important training tools, however, unfortunatly not the same

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    Quote Originally Posted by The Kai
    Actually Kata is Kata and Kumite is Kumite. Both are important training tools, however, unfortunatly not the same
    Given your definition above, and since this is the "Japanese" Kempo forum, I would like to offer a question...

    What do you consider:

    Sanbon Kumite, Ippon Kumite, Yakusoku Kumite and Jiyu Kumite?

    And how do you think they are implemented during training?

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    I think that there are always some misconceptions when using japanese words. They tend to get linked to a certain translation without taking into consideration alternate or implied definitions.

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    Default Re: Escaping Arts - Part 2: Inside Kata

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackcatbonz
    I think that there are always some misconceptions when using japanese words. They tend to get linked to a certain translation without taking into consideration alternate or implied definitions.
    Ususally those misconceptions come from folks who have no real connection to a Japanese martial arts lineage and don't understand the concept or words Kata or Kumite. Otherwise those terms are VERY basic. I don't think there have ever been alternate or implied definitions to the words kata or kumite. Unless as I stated, it was by someone who does not do a japanese style martial art.

    In every Japanese style dojo I have ever been in, they all knew what these terms meant by the time they were 5th kyu. So when someone says Kata is Kata and Kumite is Kumite, that is a pretty stong and emphatic statement don't you think? I have only seen confusion and misconception from folks that were A. Not really japanese stylists or B. Brand new to the japanese martial arts or C. perhaps someone whose style is so far removed from Japanese budo at this point that thier training no longer resembles the Japanese model of martial arts training. In which case it is no longer Japanese Budo and the use of the japanese language is moot.

    Now if he had said that playing tag with foam pads is playing tag with foams pad and doing forms without meaning is just doing forms, I would have to agree. One is a martial art and the other is.... well...playing tag with foam pads on and playing at forms. But that is not what he meant I am sure. I think that 'Kai' is a pretty advanced practitioner of his style and had a good reason to say what he said. Unless he has never done traditional Kumite.

    Anyone else have any other thoughts?

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