Kata

Kata (jap. Form) is the highest art of Karate Do. In Kata, all the in Kihon learned stances, as well as defence, strike, blow, kick, movement and jump techniques, are practiced, like in Ippon Kumite, in an exactly defined sequel, but against an imaginary opponent. Many Kata came in its original form from China to Okinawa, but were also developed there from masters, especially at the time when the practice of martial arts was generally forbidden, in order to allow the practice of these techniques hidden in a kind of dance.

So some Kata really remind a dance, Kata whose focus lie on agility, dynamics and speed. Other Kata were developed for the practice of the use of strength, as well as the interaction of tension and relaxation, the pronounced employment of the hips, breathing techniques and else more.

Every Kata follows an exactly defined, choreographic motion sequence or way, a ground line or step diagram, the so-called Embusen. It always begins with both a bow (salutation – Rei) and a defence technique in order to emphasize the principally defensive attitude of Karate Do – according to the proper sense of Karate ni sente nashi (there is no first attack in Karate) – and always ends again with a bow (salutation – Rei).

 

Performing a Kata, twelve factors are to be taken into consideration. From these factors depends the beauty and the charisma of the Kata, as well as the applicability of the shown techniques.

  1. Yoi no Kishin – to create a readiness of mind, build-up energy of mind – the mental and physical preparation to an attack and also the concentration of will and spirit on an opponent;

  2. Hara – the internal assurance, calmness, quietness, the physical and spiritual stable attitude in the centre;

  3. Mushin – to create an emptiness of mind – which allows to react within a split-second to an attack;

  4. Zanshin – the mental attitude, tension, attention and vigilance, the initiative, the fighting spirit and the combat readiness – commanding and controlling permanently his own technique without being aggressive, though;

  5. In Yo – active and passive – the balanced harmony between defence and attack techniques;

  6. Chikarano Kyojaku – the right use of strength – the amount of strength which is needed for the optimal execution of every movement and stance;

  7. Waza no Kankyu – the right speed of the single movements (slow, fast);

  8. Tai no Shinshuku – the tension and relaxation of the muscles on every movement and stance – the Kime, the focus on the right moment;

  9. Kokyu – the right, sure and conscious breathing for every technique and stance;

  10. Tyakugan – the attack points – understanding, signification and effect of the applied techniques;

  11. Kiai – the combat shout at exactly the pre-defined places and on decisive techniques;

  12. Keitai no Hoji – correct execution of the Kata with regard to the step diagram (Embusen).

 

All the above-mentioned points are not to be regarded individually, but are inextricably linked together.

For the internalisation and the better understanding of the Kata and the therein-applied techniques, it is recommended to practice regularly as follows:

 

Execution of the Kata mirror-inverted (Ura), backwards (Ushiro) or with sidestep (Okuri Ashi) backwards (Go), especially because certain techniques are being executed only single-sided.

Bunkai – analysis, interpretation and application of the techniques in the practical example with partners.

Kakushi – discovery of within the Kata hidden techniques; so is, e.g., the first technique of the Kata Taikyoku Shodan (Gedan Barai) composed of four possible single arm/fist techniques: to strike out for Gedan Barai contains two techniques: 1. left fist Jodan Nagashi Uke; 2. right fist Chudan Tsuki; the third technique is the proper Gedan Barai with the left arm and the fourth Ushiro Empi Uchi with the right arm.

 

Please note:

Kata is the highest step in the art of Karate Do. A Kata should be practised so long, until the techniques are not being executed wittingly but unwittingly – without thinking. However, this is only possible, when a high degree of comprehension for the applied techniques exists as well as a distinctive knowledge about its significance and effect. That’s why a Karateka, which masters Kata at a high level, is also (almost) always a good fighter, but not vice-versa, though. Therefore the resolution: Without Kihon no Kata, without Kata no Kumite.

 

In Shisui Ryu Karate Do the following Kata are practised:

 

  1. Taikyoku Shodan

Meaning: Basic ultimate or also Kata of the universe, first level

Origin: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 21

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  2. Taikyoku Nidan

Meaning: Basic ultimate or also Kata of the universe, second level

Origin: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 21

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  3. Taikyoku Sandan

Meaning: Basic ultimate or also Kata of the universe, third level

Origin: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 21

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  4. Taikyoku Yondan

Meaning: Basic ultimate or also Kata of the universe, forth level

Origin: Pavao Piacun

Movements: 21

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  5. Taikyoku Godan

Meaning: Basic ultimate or also Kata of the universe, fifth level

Origin: Pavao Piacun

Movements: 21

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  6. Heian Shodan

Meaning: Heian is the short form for Heiwa-Antei and means as much as freedom, calmness, peaceful mind, first level

Origin: Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gichin Funakoshi / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 23

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  7. Heian Nidan

Meaning: Heian is the short form for Heiwa-Antei and means as much as freedom, calmness, peaceful mind, second level

Origin: Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gichin Funakoshi / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 32

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  8. Heian Sandan

Meaning: Heian is the short form for Heiwa-Antei and means as much as freedom, calmness, peaceful mind, third level

Origin: Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gichin Funakoshi / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 27

Duration: ca. 30 seconds

 

  9. Heian Yondan

Meaning: Heian is the short form for Heiwa-Antei and means as much as freedom, calmness, peaceful mind, forth level

Origin: Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gichin Funakoshi / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 30

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

10. Heian Godan

Meaning: Heian is the short form for Heiwa-Antei and means as much as freedom, calmness, peaceful mind, fifth level

Origin: Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gichin Funakoshi / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 30

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

11. Heian Oyo

Meaning: Heian is the short form for Heiwa-Antei and means as much as freedom, calmness, peaceful spirit, Oyo stands for different, modified form

Origin: Taiji Kase

Further development: Pavao Piacun

Movements: 84

Duration: ca. 100 seconds

 

12. Fukyu Gata Shodan

Meaning: To spread out, first level

Origin: Chojun Miyagi

Further development: Chosin Chibana / Shoshin Nagamine / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 32

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

13. Fukyu Gata Nidan

Meaning: To spread out, second level

Origin: Chojun Miyagi

Further development: Chosin Chibana / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 29

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

14. Tekki Shodan

Meaning: Iron rider, first level

Origin: Ason (Chinese monk)

Further development: Kanryo Higaonna / Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura / Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 34

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

15. Bassai Dai

Meaning: To assault the fortress; with a  strong mind and concentrated power it is possible to achieve a victory out from a hopeless situation, Dai = the large

Origin: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 58

Duration: ca. 70 seconds

 

16. Kanku Dai

Meaning: To behold the sky (the void), Dai = the large

Origin: Kushanku / Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 76

Duration: ca. 90 seconds

 

17. Jion

Meaning: Love and kindness

Origin: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 60

Duration: ca. 70 seconds

 

18. Empi

Meaning: Flight of the swallow

Origin: Wansu (Chinese monk) / Kosaku Matsumora

Further development: Ankichi Aragaki / Kenwa Mabuni / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 50

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

19. Hangetsu

Meaning: Half moon

Origin: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 45

Duration: ca. 70 seconds

 

20. Ananku

Meaning: Light and peace from the south

Origin: From Taiwan, name unknown

Further development: Chotoku Kyan / Shoshin Nagamine / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 28

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

21. Izumaki Sho

Meaning: –

Origin: Pavao Piacun

Further development: –

Movements: 39

Duration: ca. 55 seconds

 

22. Jion no Ichi

Meaning: Love and kindness, the first

Origin: Pavao Piacun

Further development: –

Movements: 48

Duration: ca. 70 seconds

 

23. Shisui no Wankan

Meaning: Wind in the pine tree, from Shisui

Origin: Kosaku Matsumora

Further development: Shoshin Nagamine / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 40

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

24. Wansu

Meaning: Flight of the swallow

Origin: Wansu (Chinese monk)

Further development: Kosaku Matsumora / Chotoku Kyan / Shoshin Nagamine / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 29

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

25. Tekki Nidan

Meaning: Iron rider, second level

Origin: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 33

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

26. Bassai Sho

Meaning: To assault the fortress; in calmness internal force is reflected, Sho = the little

Origin: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 46

Duration: ca. 70 seconds

 

27. Kanku Sho

Meaning: To behold the sky (the void), Sho = the little

Origin: Kushanku / Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 58

Duration: ca. 70 seconds

 

28. Jitte

Meaning: Technique of love

Origin: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 38

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

29. Gankaku

Meaning: Crane on the rock

Origin: Chinto (Chinese monk)

Further development: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura / Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 46

Duration: ca. 80 seconds

 

30. Sochin

Meaning: Power and calmness, to keep the peace, to move in battle

Origin: Seisho Aragaki

Further development: Kanryo Higaonna / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 42

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

31. Shisui no Passai

Meaning: To assault the fortress

Origin: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Kokan Oyadomari / Chotoku Kyan / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 60

Duration: ca. 80 seconds

 

32. Gankaku Sho

Meaning: Crane on the rock, Sho = the little

Origin: Pavao Piacun

Further development: –

Movements: 28

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

33. Sanchin

Meaning: Three fights, three phases: mind, body and technique

Origin: China / Kanryo Higaonna

Further development: Chojun Miyagi / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 56

Duration: ca. 180 seconds

 

34. Seienchin

Meaning: Calmness in the storm

Origin: China / Kanryo Higaonna

Further development: Chojun Miyagi / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 48

Duration: ca. 80 seconds

 

35. Yuchinin

Meaning: Like the universe: infinitely and constantly in all directions extending room and time

Origin: Pavao Piacun

Further development: –

Movements: 53

Duration: ca. 120 seconds

 

36. Tekki Sandan

Meaning: Iron rider, third level

Origin: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Shoshin Nagamine / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 38

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

37. Chinte

Meaning: Calm but defeating hand, begins with calmness, becomes powerful and ends with peace of mind

Origin: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 41

Duration: ca. 70 seconds

 

38. Ji’in

Meaning: Love and shadow

Origin: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 40

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

39. Nijushiho

Meaning: Twenty-four techniques, twenty-four steps

Origin: Kosaku Matsumora

Further development: Ankichi Aragaki / Kenwa Mabuni / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 39

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

40. Meikyo Shodan

Meaning: To clean the mirror, mirror of the soul, first level

Origin: China / Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 38

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

41. Meikyo Nidan

Meaning: To clean the mirror, mirror of the soul, second level

Origin: Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gigo Funakoshi / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 55

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

42. Meikyo Sandan

Meaning: To clean the mirror, mirror of the soul, third level

Origin: Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gigo Funakoshi / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 36

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

43. Wankan

Meaning: Wind in the pine tree

Origin: China / Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Kosaku Matsumora / Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 30

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

44. Unsu

Meaning: Hand in the clouds

Origin: Kosaku Matsumora / Seisho Aragaki

Further development: Kanryo Higaonna / Ankichi Aragaki / Kenwa Mabuni / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 63

Duration: ca. 80 seconds

 

45. Gojushiho Dai

Meaning: Fifty-four steps of the black tiger, Dai = the large

Origin: China / Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 82

Duration: ca. 100 seconds

 

46. Gojushiho Sho

Meaning: Fifty-four steps of the black tiger, Sho = the little

Origin: China / Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura

Further development: Yasutsune Itosu / Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 83

Duration: ca. 100 seconds

 

47. Sepai

Meaning: The 18 hands of Lo Han

Origin: China / Kanryo Higaonna

Further development: Chojun Miyagi / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 52

Duration: ca. 80 seconds

 

48. Wandan

Meaning: Way of the King

Origin: China / Wanduan (Okinawian King)

Further development: Kitoku Sakiyama / Shigeru Nakamura / Pavao Piacun

Movements: 61

Duration: ca. 80 seconds

 

49. Saifa

Meaning: –

Origin: –

Further development: Pavao Piacun

Movements: 38

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

 

50. Ten No Kata (Omote/Ura)

Meaning: Form (Kata) of the heaven

Origin: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 52

Duration: ca. 60 seconds

 

Other Kata practised by myself:

 

51. Shotokan no Tekki Sandan

Meaning: Iron rider, third level, from Shotokan

Origin: Anko Azato / Yasutsune Itosu

Further development: Gigo Funakoshi

Movements: 38

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

52. Kitei

Meaning: –

Origin: Kanryo Higaonna / Chojun Miyagi

Further development: Hidetaka Nishiyama

Movements: 53

Duration: ca. 80 seconds

 

53. Junro Shodan

Meaning: The route, first level

Origin: Tetsuhiko Asai

Further development: –

Movements: 42

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

54. Junro Nidan

Meaning: The route, second level

Origin: Tetsuhiko Asai

Further development: –

Movements: 38

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

55. Junro Sandan

Meaning: The route, third level

Origin: Tetsuhiko Asai

Further development: –

Movements: 49

Duration: ca. 40 seconds

 

56. Junro Yondan

Meaning: The route, forth level

Origin: Tetsuhiko Asai

Further development: –

Movements: 51

Duration: ca. 50 seconds

57. Tekki Oyo

Meaning: Iron rider, Oyo stands for different, modified form

Origin: Taiji Kase

Further development: –

Movements: 90

Duration: ca. 100 seconds

58. Suparimpei

Meaning: 108 Hands

Origin: Ryu Ru Ko

Further development: Kanryo Higaonna / Kenwa Mabuni

Movements: 105

Duration: ca. 180 seconds

 

59. Annan

Meaning: Light from the south

Origin: Chinto (chinese sailor)

Further development: Sokon (Bushi) Matsumura / Norisato Nakaima

Movements: 67

Duration: ca. 90 seconds

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Gerussi Karate Do - Liebewilstrasse 93 - CH-3174 Thoerishaus by Berne - Switzerland

gerussi@gecon.ch - Phone: +41 31 333 80 80 - Mobile: +41 79 333 98 88

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