Kata

KATA, in Japanese means “form”. It is a system of training, practising a detailed series of movements choreographed into sets of patterns for an individual/group defending and counter-attacking imaginary opponent/s in different directions and distances. One of the advantages of kata training is that it does not allow the practitioner to attack or defend on their favourite stances or techniques.

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Kata should be practiced based on the following points. 

 

  • Kata should start and end with REI [Bow]

 

  • Correct basic techniques

    • Getting into the mindset; projecting confidence and maintaining the speed and power from start to end

 

  • Breathing

    • Breathe efficiently by adjusting the rate and timing to the situations’ demands

    • DO NOT hold your breath

 

  • Dachi [Stances]

    • Focus on how the different muscles of the body interrelate with one another during the performance of the kata, bringing about stability and strong stances

 

  • Posture

    • Must be stable, well-balanced and similar in every direction throughout the performance

 

  • Chakugen [Focus]

    • Focus on your movements.

    • Keep your focus on an imaginary opponent

    • Remove all forms of distraction and internalise your kata

 

  • Bunkai [Analysis and Application]

    • Analysing and breaking down the movements of kata into defense against your opponent/s. It is important that a practitioner be able to apply a single technique in different situations and attacks

    • Training in Bunkai should include distances, timing, rhythm, and fluidity [Maai, Ritsudo and Nagare]

    • Without Bunkai, kata becomes merely a dance  

 

  • Zanshin [Awareness]

    • When practising kata, the practitioner’s body posture should be in a state of awareness after executing a technique [relaxed awareness]

 

  • Repetition – to perfect the kata

    • As the saying goes… “Practice makes Perfect”. The same goes for kata. To perfect a kata, repetition is essential.

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