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Five Hard Truths about Martial Arts that you donít want to believe.

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    Originally posted by Ridgway View Post
    Japanese kata use was minimal in the 1800's . It wasn't till the 1950's that it came to be used more often until 2010 . When it hit a peek and now is on the decline again.
    Not sure what you are writing about. You talking karate ? Koryu arts used kata quite a bit, if not almost exclusively, as a training methods. They still do.

    The shin-budo/jutsu are the ones that focused more on randori-type training and competition. Judo for example

    Comment


      Originally posted by ksennin View Post
      Nowadays, the goal of training kata is to do kata well. It has becomes a recursive loop, the means became the end, because as means to other ends: fighting ability, it was no great shakes anyway.

      Karate kata has become its own type of choreographed gymnastics routines that uses martial arts moves adapted into its own insular context. Something as simple as a wrist grab has become an elaborate twisting motion for showmanship and not application.

      Competition can involve demonstration of the bunkai, or practical application of the kata, and that involves stiffly choreographed partnered motions that are even more stylized, formalized and unrealistic. I hate having to learn formalized bunkai when I personally know from my crosstraining much more practical versions of all the "defenses". BUnkai actually forces me to repress my trained defense reactions in order to go for the absurd formal movements instead.

      I am honestly thinking of someday opening my own karate school and call it the NO KATA school.
      The kata for the sake of kata thing has taken over in Judo as well, and it makes me kinda ill...

      It's a training method for dawg's sake, not the end product.

      Comment


        Originally posted by Ridgway View Post
        I think this was due to western influence I may be wrong.
        It is the same with the belt system. It only started in the 1900's
        Oh, you are wrong, for sure. What's your source of info for your statements regarding kata?

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          Originally posted by BKR View Post
          Quoted for truth. I outlined my experience with the bunkai stuff in a previous post. It was an ongoing thing, as I was cross training with the MA club at Tulane. I did the "karate" and TKD and some of the Philippine stuff as well. The TKD instructor was actually a decent fighter standing up, and we did pretty much full contact sparring.

          Anyway, there are still a shit-ton of those "basically just Judo guys around", and they amuse me immensely, although it's a sad sort of amusement. I actually know some of them (many hang out on a FB group I frequent at times).

          However, there are a lot of judo guys who have seen the light and are doing both BJJ and Judo, and see the "holes" in Judo.

          Like I've written before, it's how to get to the point of the pin or sub that matters most, same with throwing...and BJJ excels at that on the ground. Some judoka excel at it standing, but many still don't get that fundamental point.
          Yes, there seems to be more cross training, both ways. I honestly think the rivalry that exists in the minds of many grapplers is completely ridiculous. And I've seen it in every grappling style.

          In every style there are guys who see things clearly and guys who are just knuckle dragging asshats. It's the asshats that tend to stick in your mind, unfortunately.

          Wrestlers, judoka, BJJ practitioners, etc....should just kick each others' asses and become monsters together.

          Comment


            Originally posted by BKR View Post
            The kata for the sake of kata thing has taken over in Judo as well, and it makes me kinda ill...

            It's a training method for dawg's sake, not the end product.
            I can accept it as long as honesty is retained. You acknowledge you are practicing an athletic discipline based upon fighting moves but emphasizing performance aesthetics or athletic sporting achievement and I have no problem. But those who state that training kata and discovering its secrets are the path to being a great fighter have drank the kool-aid way too much.

            I even distrust the old argument that kata is what you do when you can no longer spar or have heavy contact. I have series joint and backbone injuries and doing kata actually hurts more than loose sparring.

            Comment


              This is where Rabbit may have come handy.

              Did the old Chinese forms ever have a separate formal bunkai-like set of applications that was formally taught? Or was it considered redundant? Was it a purely recent addition from those whose students could no longer make head or tails or what they were supposed to be doing?

              Comment


                Originally posted by Dork Angel View Post
                Interesting discussion considering everyone seems to have a different idea of what kata is. Personally I consider any technique practised against an imaginary opponent to be a form of kata, whether that's traditional karate, shadow boxing, rolling around on the ground or doing it to music (*cough* Body Combat *cough*).

                It can be used as a warm-up, an exercise form, a learning tool, a way to practise on your own or a way to record techniques. It can also be pointless. For example, my old Ju-Jitsu club used to have a couple of kata's. You did them as part of your grading to demonstrate different blocks. There was no movement, no counter-striking, just a series of blocks using your arms. Personally I think it was there because they felt Martial Arts had to have a kata in it somewhere. The Aikido club on the other hand had a kata as part off their warm-up which included arm movements along with foot movements and pivots. This was much more practical and useful as every move in their syllabus had a basis in the kata. I've watched a Judo guy warming up before a mma style match practising footwork drills and throw wind ups on his own before his fight and then nailing the guy he was fighting with the throw he was practising. I also think there's a definite blurring of the line between drills and kata so I would consider pad work where you're learning combinations to be a type of kata.

                So in my opinion it can be a good training tool, but if it's all you do it loses most of it's benefits. I think the problem is that some arts have elevated Kata to mystical status and removed the follow-up work that made it useful. Unless you progress from imaginary to real opponents and made up to actual moving targets you're like someone who practices drawing beautiful letters. You might even be able to copy some words, but you'll never learn how to write a story.
                If you want to call shadow boxing and bag work kata, fine.

                But let's for a minute talk about kata as it is typically understood. We're talking about predefined sets of movements that exist within most of the traditional striking arts.

                They are not used as warm ups. They are at the core of those martial arts. They are interpreted as a vital part of your training as you're learning to fight. There are many of them to learn as you progress. They represent a huge portion of your training time.

                It's also not as simple as saying, "well, kata is okay as long as you're also sparring." No. That's not true. Kata are detrimental. Kata training is a drain on your training time. It's better than not training at all. But if you've already made your way to the gym, it's a fucking shame to spend time working kata that could be better spent elsewhere.

                Comment


                  That is what happens when the system itself becomes more important than its implementation.

                  I think the Tai Chi forms are prettier anyway.

                  Comment


                    Originally posted by Devil View Post
                    Kata are detrimental. Kata training is a drain on your training time. It's better than not training at all. But if you've already made your way to the gym, it's a fucking shame to spend time working kata that could be better spent elsewhere.
                    We cannot even make an analogy to "that" other physical activity which can be practiced in pairs or by your lonesome. In either of those you can still end up with a relatively successful ending. But as solo practice kata is much less productive for its original ultimate purpose than onanism is for its own.
                    Last edited by ksennin; 10/21/2016 12:26pm, .

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                      Originally posted by Holy Moment View Post
                      Also, kata is some serious pussy shit.
                      You do not need to sugar-coat things with us here.

                      Comment


                        Originally posted by BKR View Post
                        Not sure what you are writing about. You talking karate ? Koryu arts used kata quite a bit, if not almost exclusively, as a training methods. They still do.

                        The shin-budo/jutsu are the ones that focused more on randori-type training and competition. Judo for example
                        I'm not sure which one it was something I had seen when doing some research on kata work. Just remember it saying Japanese kata use. And a chart indicating use

                        Comment


                          Originally posted by Devil View Post
                          Yes, there seems to be more cross training, both ways. I honestly think the rivalry that exists in the minds of many grapplers is completely ridiculous. And I've seen it in every grappling style.

                          In every style there are guys who see things clearly and guys who are just knuckle dragging asshats. It's the asshats that tend to stick in your mind, unfortunately.

                          Wrestlers, judoka, BJJ practitioners, etc....should just kick each others' asses and become monsters together.
                          People get identified with whatever they have put a lot of time, effort, money, and body-parts into. Martial arts are the same. It's comfortable to think you are billy-badass because of your training in XYZ MA. Getting comfortable is the problem, though, not the solution.

                          It gets back to something we have discussed before, not getting your ass kicked enough while coming up in a MA/combat sport. I've had my ass kicked, and not just mildly, either. So when I went to BJJ as pretty much out of shape 53 year old 3rd degree black belt in Judo, recovering from a stupid back injury, I was not surprised to get my ass kicked, over and over again. Because I'd been there and done that when I was a 25 year old kick ass and take names kinda guy.

                          Does it bother me having my ass kicked, and finding out that there is stuff I (heaven forbid) don't know about grappling, or could do better? Yes, to some degree, but that's part of the training too...being uncomfortable. And in effect, I expect to be uncomfortable, to be shown I have a lot to learn and a lot to get better at executing, and to realize I'm almost 54 years old and regardless, I'm not going to be able to keep up that well with guys 25-30 years younger than me as well as I might want to.

                          Comment


                            Originally posted by ksennin View Post
                            I sometimes think many elements are worse than worthless, being instead damaging by teaching completely wrong techniques or deluded strategies. So they have negative worth.

                            For example, in all my decades of karate, training under well-regarded teachers and being part of the national competition team, I have yet to ever see any fighter use successfully a yoko-uke block against a punch. Even in basic drills or bunkai, when you know what punch is coming and you have all the forewarning needed, the damn thing is uncomfortable to implement and being an a$$h*le I make a point of landing the punches on people despite their trying to use it. I tend to think the whole move is not really a block at all but a misremembered/misapplied arm twist to release a wrist grab or other basic initial arm hold. So all the damn people learning that in drills and kata are memorizing something that not only does not work, but actually moves the arm away from covering yourself, so it is worse than huddling in fear.
                            Yes. Exactly. Negative worth.

                            Comment


                              Originally posted by Ridgway View Post
                              I'm not sure which one it was something I had seen when doing some research on kata work. Just remember it saying Japanese kata use. And a chart indicating use
                              Kata were the primary training method for Japanese martial arts, during the 1800s for sure (after the unification of Japan under the Tokugawa Shogunate). I'm not sure what your source was talking about, but it wasn't talking accurately about Japanese martial arts/ways.

                              Comment


                                Originally posted by Devil View Post
                                Yes. Exactly. Negative worth.
                                There are a lot of other training practices that have negative worth, as well. Kata doesn't even begin to scratch the surface...

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