What Good are Forms?

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by dvcochran, Sep 8, 2019.

  1. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    Yeah, I have literally never done a sequence like that in Bjj. Typically what happens is that you do the shrimping drill up and down the mat, and you then apply the shrimp when you're rolling. I have never seen shrimping paired with a leg sweep in a drill. I don't even know if that's possible because there's no way to predict what your opponent is going to do after the shrimp so adding a sweep to the shrimp would be a waste of time. I'll grant you the possibility of a technical stand up, because all that requires is for you to be clear of your opponent, but I've never seen that drilled in sequence either.

    Yeah, a pre-arranged form or pattern. The second video is the guy doing a series of drills that is not pre-arranged. He's just doing them one after another. He could completely flip the order around and do different drills and it wouldn't matter. You can't do that in a Karate kata. Basai-dai for example has a set beginning, middle and end.

    That's exactly what it is in the context I was responding to. You're simply moving the goalpost now to include any physical drill that someone does, and we both know that's nonsense.
     
  2. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    I have zero interest in playing this silly game where we stretch the meaning of kata to infinite levels because we ALL know exactly what kata is and isn't. The point I was responding to was the notion that a martial art throwing out their kata is tantamount to throwing out a computer or a mainframe and starting over with pens and pencils.
     
  3. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    its interesting that a Korean judo champion who devised the formalized traditional k-mma called Gongkwon Yusul has forms. a matched pair of them to be exact.
     
  4. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    good.
    I was.never.playing.with.you.
    *waves byebye to ya*

    frankly after 3 or 4 years of reading all your views on forms, I really get how you feel. you think their worthless.
    I suspect that your in this thread to troll those who value them, rather then give thoughtful input into the group discussion, as you have, many times before when it comes to this subject.

    by all means, please don't play silly games.

    I was being ernest and serious. I meant what I posted. its not important to me to win debates or play semantic games. I am here for thoughtful dialogue, and fun camaraderie.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2019
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  5. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    So then please explain how Bjj lost it's "mainframe" when it removed Judo kata from its system. Then please explain how Judo lost its "mainframe" when it removed hundreds of kata from the dozens of classical JJJ styles it absorbed.
     
  6. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Because there are other ways to get the same result.
     
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  7. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I'd again argue that this is arguing against specific kata and specific use of kata. Once a form is learned (so folks have worked out the parts well enough), I encourage them to experiment by rearranging, replacing one technique with another that can be used in that sequence, etc. This can be done with any form - the form simply becomes the starting point to launch from. Whether an instructor encourages that kind of exploration or not is not dependent upon the form.
     
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  8. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    Um no. I'm in this thread because you made a crazy statement that you're now refusing to back up.
     
  9. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    If you're saying that because you think I was dismissing kata, you misread my post. I said removing them seems to have no effect on Judo. It doesn't improve it or weaken it, so far as I can tell. There are other ways to get to the same result, so kata can be used or can be replaced.
     
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  10. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    While I don't agree with his statement, I will acknowledge that he said that specifically about Karate, not about Judo/JJ.
     
  11. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    Kata in JJJ had/has the exact same purpose as Karate kata. Also I believe that there's some Kyokushin descendant styles that have also removed the kata from their system as well.
     
  12. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    Well look at the example that TSD gave; Sequencing a shrimp to a leg sweep. The reason that is bonkers is because there's too many variables at play to sequence the movement in that fashion. All that you're going to end up doing is trying to go for that sweep after you shrimp over and over again, and its going to get you caught and actually retard your development. It's actually far better to drill the shrimp motion in isolation, use the motion in sparring, and then come up with follow-ups in a live environment that actually fit your needs in a given situation.

    That by the way is why I vehemently oppose kata bunkai.
     
  13. Yokozuna514

    Yokozuna514 Purple Belt

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    Actually the axe kick does appear in Kyokushin katas. It is in Sokugi Taikyoko San.
     
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  14. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    its easier to believe that when the art is technique driven like jkd, draj, or bjj or judo.

    But if you go back before Itosu mainstreamed karate, to when his master learned a kata named Channan on a beach in single afternoon.

    The form was quick enough to learn (Bushi learned it in a single afternoon) if you were physically fit enough, and had enough wits about you.

    But the form had so much to teach, that Itosu didn't just break it up into five separate forms.
    a + b + c + d + e = channan

    No, he created a family of forms (pinnans 1-5)that were approachable, but building in difficulty and they became the cliff notes for ShuriTe.
    This was taught to elementary school kids, but opened them up to be able understand and perform even higher level karate.

    Itosu's student Gichin Funakoshi... wound up having a son named Gigo Funakoshi. He took the pinnan kata series and distilled them down even further.

    They became called the Taikyoku kata. they were three in total.

    So how can 1 form that could be learned in 1 afternoon... have enough material to spawn 2 more generations of forms or 8 forms total?

    Because there is a lot more going on than just a technique library of punch, block, step, kick, turn.

    kata without understanding or realizing its meaning becomes dancing.
    it is very interesting that in Mainland Japan the primary focus is on performance and perfecting it.
    (Once again Gigo Funakoshi's impact.)
    but in Okinawa the primary.focus is on "Imi" or the why of each movement. Te was/is a principle driven art. the techniques should be derived a coherent system of principles.

    or as Jesse-san pointed out:

    10 Differences Between Okinawan Karate & Japanese Karate
    By Jesse Enkamp
    Question:
    Do you know the difference between Okinawan Karate & Japanese Karate?

    I didn’t.

    Until I revisted Okinawa – the birthplace of Karate.

    Since then, I’ve revisited the amazing island over a dozen times. I even lived there in 2009, studying Japanese at Okinawa University.

    So I can assure you…

    There are MANY differences between Okinawan and Japanese Karate.



    #2. “Why” Over “How”

    If you practice Karate in Okinawa, you will often hear the word “imi”.

    “Imi” translates to “meaning” in English.

    Hence, in Okinawan Karate, the meaning of a technique is often more stressed than how the technique is actually executed.

    The Why is more important than the How.

    Japanese Karate, on the other hand, is often more focused on the How rather than the Why.

    How come?

    There are three main reasons for this:

    1. The meaning of many techniques was lost during the historical transmission of Karate from Okinawa to Japan. If you don’t know the Why, it’s more sensible to teach the How.
    2. The purpose of Japanese Karate is not aligned with the purpose of Okinawan Karate anymore. Historically speaking, Japanese Karate was molded to suit the spiritual Way (“Karate-Do”) of contemporary martial arts like Judo, Kendo, Aikido etc., with the main purpose of developing the character of its participants (through the How). The purpose of Okinawan Karate has always been mainly self-defense oriented (the Why).
    3. The level of martial knowledge , i.e. biomechanics of Budo, is much deeper in Japan. Many techniques of Japanese Karate are influenced by other, more established, Japanese martial arts where the optimal movement patterns are well-researched.
    For example, a Japanese sensei will go very deep in details of a kata.

    (How to twist your hips, how to adjust your feet, how to shift your weight etc.)

    But an Okinawan sensei will often remind you of the purpose of a kata instead.

    The “bunkai”.

    Get it?
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2019
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  15. TSDTexan

    TSDTexan Master of Arts

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    you have an interesting point.
    which helps clarify this:
    Judo kata has a far different role in judo, than karate kata has in karate.
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2019
  16. pdg

    pdg Senior Master

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    From what I'm seeing, your view of what "we ALL" know to be kata is different to what the rest of "ALL" appear to view it as.

    Oh, and the Oxford English dictionary has this to say:

    Screenshot_20190919-144028.png
     
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  17. Hanzou

    Hanzou Grandmaster

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    And that definition wouldn't include the drills found in Bjj or sports in general. Detailed, choreographed, pattern, and individual are all key words.
     
  18. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    That variability is true of most combo drills. Even a jab-straight combo, their reaction can make that not a good choice to continue. Yet we (everyone in every art I've seen training for) trains combos. Done well, it acknowledges the variables exist. Ideally, the combos you work the most in drills are ones that have a high payoff (definitive chance at a win, or are often available).
     
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  19. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I haven't digested the whole post yet - trying to read between work tasks - but the first comment is one that always confuses me. What is "technique focused", and what is the opposite?

    If you mean technique-focused vs principle-focused, every style I've studied for even a brief period has techniques as its teaching mechanism and principles as its core.

    If you mean technique-focused vs kata-focused, I'm still not sure I buy that as a distinction. Kata is used (in part) to teach techniques (or at least movements used in them). In other styles, drills are used in that same purpose. Traditionally, JJJ "techniques" are actually forms (at least in the traditional methods I've seen) - they're just short forms, rather than long ones (though I have been led to understand that some JJJ actually had longer forms, as well). And there are layers within those short forms, as there are within Karatedo's kata.
     
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  20. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I'll take your word for it. I never experienced them, so don't know how they were used. And I have no idea what the original intention was in either art.
     

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