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Posted On:10/20/2002 7:09am
Style: World 10-3 Ryu Karate
I would like to hear everyone's opinion on how kata/forms improves their fighting. I have formed an opinion of my own and have heard what the masters of my style had to say about it. I would like to hear a different slant on the practicality of drilling kata to improve one's fighting from other stylists.
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Posted On:10/20/2002 2:42pm
I consider forms just a training tool. Do they teach you how to fight. Not really, not directly. They do teach you how to move and eventually you will evolve above them...like shadow boxing.
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Posted On:10/20/2002 2:51pm
Style: BJJ, Karate,
Forms are utterly useless. There is NOTHING you get by practicing Kata that you can't get by doing more realisitic drills. Kata is a static practice of outdatred technique where as pad training, bagtraining, sparring, rappling ALL teach you REALISTIC technique AND work your body AND develop timing, speed, acuracy and focus.
There is no reason to practice Kata if your goal in training is to be able to defend yourself.
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Posted On:10/20/2002 4:19pm
I basically feel that our katas are just a way of teaching us the fighting principles of our system. Does that mean the only way to get better is by doing the kata - or should the kata be used as a tool.
You can essentially pull the principles from the katas and then drill them working many of the ways PeedeeShaolin mentioned above.
I will also say that there are bjj systems that in a sense do use katas - www.royharris.com - he essentially has the students do little mini katas (maybe 5 or 6 techniques strung together - or is it Michael Jen??). They drill these pre-arranged moves over and over - but then they learn to go live with the principles they worked on. It's just an easy way for the student to remember the techniques (which contain the principles). I know wresterly who essentially do the same thing.
When you just blast through your katas with your mind and emotions shut off you are basically getting a good physical workout.
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Posted On:10/20/2002 7:15pm
Style: Electricity, Speed
Kata gets a pretty bad rap, but if you keep in mind that its number one purpose is to show you techniques and not increase your chi flow or somesuch, I think they can be a pretty effective training drill. I mean, I wouldn't rely on 12 prearranged patterns to teach me everything there is to know about fighting, and I sure as hell wouldn't be giving them priority over the punching bag, but they're useful for neatly organizing techniques.
Peedee, when you were in karate, did they stress kata as some spiritual exercise, or were they placing the focus on technique? Because when I was reading your article on kata, you gave pretty much a passing mention to the idea of kata teaching you techniques, which is its primary purpose. One reason people practice these moves in kata more often than individually is because kata has the benefit of a built-in way of judging your distancing (starting and ending in the same place).
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Posted On:10/21/2002 4:18am
Kata are like the table of contents in a book. Y
Posted On:10/21/2002 5:45am
First of all, you all talk of a very narrow definition of Kata : a long series of moves practiced by a single person.
Kata in Japanese actually means any prearranged exercise. If your attacker is supposed to apply technique A and you are supposed to resist him using technique B, it is also Kata. I doubt any of you doesn't practice using such drills.
If we consider your narrow interpretation of Kata, at which I have minor experience through my TKD training (my current secondary art). Well the Kata is one tool supposed to assist a practitioner in learning several things, at least:
An introduction to several techniques
A way to improve specific coordination
A starter to sequencing multiple techniques
A conveyer of ideaís
Self practice importance, no equipment necessary.
Iíll elaborate on the third item and give an example, as it is the most vague point.
In the TKD first Pumsa (Kata) one uses a block and then a strike to the four basic directions- front, right, left & back. The first concepts one could learn from this Pumsa is to look before you act, then the concept of protecting yourself from harm before attacking the opponent (in this case using a block rather then positioning\timing approach).
So sure, you could find other ways to learn all of these. But they do have some worth.
Sparring is a good concept, but one may prefer learning with less stress at least occasionally, such learning does have itís own virtue.
Posted On:10/21/2002 5:40pm
Style: Be Happy
Most teachers wont show you the true applications of kata anyways. All karate styles and the like has been modified. Some teachers deliberatly teach you kata to take up your time just to see how loyal you are before he teaches the real secrets of the system. Some just do it so they can make more money out of you. I kid you not.
Ghost of Charles Dickens
Posted On:10/21/2002 9:17pm
Style: Wing Chun
To take WT's stance forms are just a toolbox. We don't act like we're fighting anyone.
So, we run through that once (no repitition of it, really), and then we go through a lot of drills and such... Hands on stuff, so to speak. Very fun.
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Forms for self-defense isn't useless. Forms without any sense of applications is useless.
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