Kata and Forms...?

Discussion in 'Japanese Martial Arts - General' started by Milt G., Jul 26, 2009.

  1. Black Belt Jedi

    Black Belt Jedi Blue Belt

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    I find kata to be very important as learning self-defense because kata gives you a good work out when performing it full out and gives you good benefits. Kata training also gives you body memory and muscle memory along with timing, coordination, balance and pace. Kata training is used to record moves from the Acts of Physical Violence. Being able to learn various analysis of the moves can make sense of way you doing this move and that move. IMO, it is more convenient for a student to learn various analysis/applications from random templates as much as possible before learning the first kata. That's what I do when I teach a new student Karate.
     
  2. Cyriacus

    Cyriacus Senior Master

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    I Agree.
    Just to Lightly Expand, Kata, like anything of the sort, are Compartmentalised Functionality. As such, Aspects of all Kata should work in Step Sparring; Perhaps better showing their Capability (Or, more Obviously, rather)
     
  3. lma

    lma Yellow Belt

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    There is kumite without kata. There is no kata without kihon . From what I have seen of martial arts that learn "patterns" and not kata it is not essential. They use at as a quick way to practice in the house and yes there are so many other ways to do this , shadow box and so on. Kata though and especially how we get taught helps you do more than learn muscle memory, fitness , movement and other physical things. The mental side is strong for two reasons particular automatic reactions. So I have "imagined" some one kicking me from the side a million times from the side in kion kata. This has override my flight or fight (ur first naturual reaction) reactions to a down block and punch. Yes I could have maybe learned it in sparring but its impractical and slow going if you practicing against multiple attackers. Also with there being many bunkai for each it gets you thinking outside the box .
     
  4. kungfu penguin

    kungfu penguin Green Belt

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    i think mma practitioners dont understand kata. when they do those various bag drills over and over thousands of times arent they doing kata striking, evading, footwork, blocking, breathing, balance sounds like kata to me. also groundfighters wether practicing armbar triangle kimura or any other of the 100s of things they do hundreds of hours to be able to perform it in a smoker or tournament. wrestlers too, thye do double legs single legs clinch firemans toss cross faces, etc... 1000s of time to perfect it again sounds like kata to me:)
     
  5. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    A lot of MMA do understand kata, many come from a traditional background like myself, some of us do MMA and TMA so please don't bring that 'oh MMA people don't understand stuff' here, there's just as many TMA people who don't understand kata as they don't do the Bunkai for it.
    Why does MMA get held up when someone wants to point out ignorance, MMA people are martial artists too.
    What on earth is a 'smoker'?
     
  6. Kong Soo Do

    Kong Soo Do Master of Arts

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    Here is my input;

    If one looks at forms from a block/punch/kick perspective then forms are only slightly useful and are often relegated to the 'do a form, get the next colored belt'. It becomes a class filler.

    If however, one looks at forms from the perspective of each form holding information beyond b/p/k such as throws, chokes, balance displacement etc, then each form now opens up an entirely new world of information. Many 'founding father' of Karate only studied or taught a very few kata. Uechi Sensei once stated that to truly know Karate, one had only to study Seisan kata.

    Less is often more from the right perspective.
     
  7. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    I've often heard that said about Naihanchi as well, 'the perfect kata', that it contains everything you need to defend yourself.
     
  8. seasoned

    seasoned Grandmaster Staff Member

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    Many systems have many kata. From a personal preference, once you fine the right kata for you, and your body type, that kata, becomes your "favorite kata". From a Sensei perspective, their mission is to learn all kata within their system, pass them all down to their students along with full knowledge of bunkai within each kata. As the student becomes advanced it is the job of the Sensei to direct this student toward a kata that best fits that individuals needs and body type, while in turn introducing that student to their "favorite kata". This is the way I was taught, and it is the way I teach.............
     
  9. WC_lun

    WC_lun Senior Master

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    Form is like any other tool used to train martial arts. If the training tool is used properly then it is an important part of training, though not the most important part. If used improperly, then it is worse than useless and can be thrown out.

    If you want to know if form is being used correctly to train, are the principles being taught in your form apparent in your heavy sparring? If not, then the form training is not being applied and therefore a waste of time and you should concentrate elsewhere.
     
  10. chinto

    chinto Senior Master

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    I was trained that in the Okinawan systems of karate at least, and in the 'classical kata's', as opposed to the so called tournament kata that some have come up with for flash and such, there are at least 5 hidden techniques for every single move in the kata.

    whether you are talking about tamari type systems like Shobayashi or Shuri systems like Matsumura Seito, you could spend a year of every night for 2 hours working on say Chinto kata finding everything hidden in there and still have more to learn from just that one kata.
     
  11. Kinghercules

    Kinghercules Blue Belt

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    Well I train in Tang Soo Do Tae Kwon Do and I think forms are important for ones training.
     
  12. Kinghercules

    Kinghercules Blue Belt

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    For me forms help you with your trainin and show your lineage.
    I was always told that fighting and forms go hand in hand. How you do your forms is how you fight.
    Some forms are for long rang fightin, close in fightin, balance, power, conditioning & speed.
     
  13. 72ronin

    72ronin Purple Belt

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    #1.

    An absolute must in my opinion, they provide a solid foundation to work from.
     
  14. Jason Striker II

    Jason Striker II Blue Belt

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    As several members have remarked, it very much depends 1) on the particular MA, and 2) what you want to get out of that art.

    If you are practicing any form of Okinawan or Japanese Karate, my answer would be that Kata is *vital*.

    Another point no one has mentioned: Kata you can do your whole life; I have been in classical Karate for 42 years, so I have some experience here. In many other arts people simply drop out of them because beyond competition and drills of various types (partner or with equipment) there is nothing else. Kata is always doable.
     
  15. tshadowchaser

    tshadowchaser Sr. Grandmaster

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    Kata is the foundation that you build from. Without kata you areimply a fighter ( and there is nothing wrong with just being a fighter) but you have missed some important training if you want to be a complet martial person.
    Kata not only helps one learn proper movement but there is a mental side to kata also.
    There is also much in some kata that one learns from experence that is not shown when one first learns these forms. Yes, you may learn the same lessons without kata but then again you may not.
     
  16. FabianosKarate

    FabianosKarate White Belt

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    I say #2. We take a LOT of examples from our katas and have extremely practical uses for them.
     
  17. enthusiast

    enthusiast Yellow Belt

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    When I was in taekwondo, I have always thought that forms are very boring and never gave any time studying it, except when in the dojo(I was young back then). But when you are in an MMA gym, all you do is condition, do mitts, punch bags, roll, etc. I found this routine very unsatisfying and being the person that I am, I wanted to know about history, forms, proper execution etc. At this point, this was the point where I wanted to find a school where they still practice the forms, bowing, and other rituals, I said to myself that any martial art will do. Now that I am in Karate, I find that forms are a huge part of the discipline. I realized that martial arts isn't only about fighting but it is also about conditioning the mind and forming habits. And as many people have said before, it is where we can practice technique, balance, fundamentals, etc.

    So I say 1) Necessary
     

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