Kata bunkai for self defense

Discussion in 'Karate' started by Kong Soo Do, Mar 11, 2015.

  1. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

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    You do realise you can remove it?
     
  2. TimoS

    TimoS Master of Arts

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    Have people grown extra limbs? If not, what has changed so dramatically that the self defense principles in kata are in danger of becoming irrelevant?
     
  3. K-man

    K-man Grandmaster

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    I can only talk of Goju kata. Other styles may have kata with particular bunkai to fit the kata. In some of those maybe you are correct but they are outside my knowledge. Within Goju, I don't believe there is any need to change.

    Perhaps I can put it another way. There are many ways of using your knowledge of your style to fight. We used to practise one step sparring and two step sparring. I think there might even have been three step sparring. We didn't have bunkai for fighting. We had some bunkai that was unrealistic and it was more of a basic explanation of kata than anything of any use. If I was still training that way I would be 100% in agreement with you. Almost all karate guys would agree that you don't need knowledge of kata to fight and most karate guys wouldn't know how to use kata bunkai to fight.

    So what has changed over the years that would change the way of fighting? The only thing I can think of is the proliferation of ground fighting. Despite some people trying to apply bunkai to ground fighting, I don't believe it was ever intended that way and I have not seen any evidence of people utilising it that way and still retain the concepts of kata. So, if you are arguing that karate needs to take measures to ensure the training remains relevant particularly in the area of ground fighting, then I would agree. How that comes about we will have to wait and see. Of course, that has nothing to do with kata. As I've said many times, bunkai works because of predictive response and I cannot see how that can work on the ground and keep the rules of kata. Without that there is no point in designing a new kata and there is absolutely no reason to change an existing one.

    Now let's look at the context of self defence. What is the context? I have done all I can to avoid the conflict but now it's all turning pear shaped. Am I going to launch a pre-emotive strike or am I going to wait? If I elected to take the first option then I could move straight into bukai. If I wait for an attack I cannot use bunkai, at least not initially. The value of bunkai is that I know ahead of time what I can do if my attack fails, but I need to have controlling contact. If I lose contact and don't control my opponent, again, I can't use bunkai. If the fight goes to the ground, I can't use bunkai
     
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  4. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Yes.
     
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  5. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Well I put an even simpler math to the idea. That you change the drills to update for a reason. It can be ground fighting or whatever.

    So you are changing and updating. Just not the kata.
     
  6. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    I have grown extra knowledge. I have defences that null some older attacks.

    I have new strikes. New strategies, different combinations, and just more techniques.
     
  7. TimoS

    TimoS Master of Arts

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    So your limbs move in a different way than people from let's say ten or hundred years ago? If not, I really doubt your strikes are anything new
     
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  8. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    How many people were involved in discovering these strikes. And set ups to striking. Before it went into kata and got sealed in stone?
     
  9. TimoS

    TimoS Master of Arts

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    Huh?

    You know, it is already well established that you don't understand kata, so why are you still talking about it, because it sure isn't because you want to understand it
     
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  10. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    I understand that techniques need updating. I don't understand why kata doesn't.

    As far as I can tell. You are suggesting kata has already incorporated the best possible combinations of movements.

    I think understanding kata might be different to worshiping it.
     
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  11. TimoS

    TimoS Master of Arts

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    You could've said that with just four words: "I don't understand kata"
     
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  12. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    Agree!

    If a technique can be used in many different ways, it will require many different "set ups". Unfortunately, the form/kata can only "record" 1 set up.

    For example, When you throw a "right back reverse punch", if your intention is to

    - punch on your opponent's face, your left hand may not have to do much.
    - take your opponent down, your left hand may need to pull on his arm, or leg. That will require some modification.

    The form/kata is "dead". It's you that have to bring it back "alive".

    The day my teacher told me that form/kata is for teaching and learning only. It's not for "training". That was the most valuable MA lesson that I have learned in my life. Every time I did my form/kata, I put different "soul" into my "dead" form and gave my form/kata different "spirit".
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2015
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  13. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Well no I really couldn't. I don't understand the worship of kata. Which is a different thing.
     
  14. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Mabye generations of martial artists who really had no way to transfer information except dogmatically have become stuck with a mindset now.
     
  15. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    Even the same technique, when you apply it on your opponent while he has

    - right side forward, or
    - left side forward,

    your "set up" may be different. How many form/kata creator had recorded both "set ups" in the form/kata that he created?

    I have learned 2 different forms/katas.

    - In one form, when I did a left side kick, my opponent downward blocks it and spins my body to my "left". I then have to follow a right palm strike on his neck.
    - In another form, when I did a left side kick, my opponent downward blocks it and spins my body to my "right". I then have to follow a right spin back fist on his head.

    What if I just learned one form, or what if 1 of these 2 forms was lost and never passed down through the generations? Since the move after that left side kick is different in the form/kata, will I just learn 1/2 of the application for the rest of my life if I never have the intention to "modify" that form?
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2015
  16. TimoS

    TimoS Master of Arts

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    You do realize that you can't design a form/kata/whatever that has all the possible combinations in it? The kata shows you the principles, it is up to you and your instructor/training partner to learn to apply them.
     
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  17. drop bear

    drop bear Sr. Grandmaster

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    Or if you are eating some sort of counter that could be readily fixed with a tweaked technique. I mean I am always in a state of doing that.

    The other day was slightly flared elbows on my jab that let a really fast boxer punch my ribs in.
     
  18. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    Now you are talking about "partner training" that map the content of form/kata into application. I agree that will be the best and only way to "develop" your skill.
     
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  19. TimoS

    TimoS Master of Arts

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    Well, partner training is and always has been a major part of kata, at least in those systems that haven't lost their knowledge.
     
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  20. Kung Fu Wang

    Kung Fu Wang Grandmaster

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    Another good example will be when you use downward parry on your opponent's leading arm, if he

    - resists (contact is made), you then grab and pull his leading arm.
    - rotates his arm to avoid contact, you then rotate your arm into the opposite direction to meet his arm 1/2 way.

    Will both follow on moves (after downward parry) be recorded in the form/kata? The chance is very small.123
     

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