I'm not disputing that katahas training benefits, we do burpees as part of our training and that has a benefit for fighting ability, as do push ups and star jumps et al, they are all mobility exercises, fitness exercises, co ordination exercises and pattern recognition exercises, they are no better or worse than kata in that respect. dependent on intensity,
what I'm struggling to comprehend is why failing to returning to exactly the same spot is a failure in kata, as its connection to fighting ability is is minuscule if it exists at all.
the spacial awareness you need to fight is extremely fluid, things are constantly in motion, you have to judge time and distant in a fraction of second, and then be able to correct mid move. none of that is a product of returning to the same sport 60 moves down the line. you would be better playing tag
I think you're putting too much emphasis on the whole thing about returning to the same spot.
In itself, it really doesn't mean much. If I mess up a bunch of moves half way through I can always stretch or shorten later stances to make sure I end up where I started.
What it really is is a possible marker that the entire thing has been done consistently and correctly - if you've been observed all the way through and nothing has obviously been 'adjusted' then chances are you've done it right.
In that context it's the same as "are you standing up after a burpee?" If you're not, something has gone wrong. Can you use that as an indicator of fighting ability? Kind of...
As for saying it's a 'failure' - in a competition context, if your opponent does finish in the right place, it shows you made mistakes.