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Kata is a sequence of basic techniques (Kihon). The techniques, when performed alone or combined with other techniques, give the practitioner the movement needed to defeat an attacker.



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Taikyoku Shodan
Pinan Shodan
Pinan Godan
Naihanchi Shodan

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Tai Kyo Ku
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Naihanchi Shodan
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The grand ultimate void from which all things originate and all things return. This kata is often foolishly abdondoned by martial artists and even more often misspelled.

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This kata is often written to mean 'in the middle of the battlefield'. However, Funakoshi changed the name to Tekki, which roughly mean 'iron horse' or 'steel knight'.

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Pinan Shodan
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Naihanchi Nidan
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This is the first, of five, 'peaceful mind' katas. The Pinan's were derived by Anko Itosu from Kusanku for instruction in school. Now, they are practiced by Martial artists around the world!

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The second level of the Naihanchi series. Like its predecessor, this kata mantains a horse stance throughout its form, but its moves are more demanding.

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Pinan Nidan
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Naihanchi Sandan
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This is the second level of the 'peaceful mind' series. Those practicing Shotokan should recognize the Pinan katas as their Heian katas. Although, the order of the first two are swapped.

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This is the third level of the iron horse. This time the emphasis is clearly on generating the most power from the least amount of space.

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Pinan Sandan
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Passai
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The third pinan kata is marked by the hip wrenching throws in the back half and the notorious 'pulling your pants up' move that may be used to break an attackers arm.

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This kata combines large explosive motions with lighting quick arm attacks. No wonder this kata is called "Penetrate the Fortress".

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Pinan Yodan
Tanbo No Di
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Level three starts somewhat like the first and the similarities don't end there - Two side thrust kicks, reverse hip rotation, and several knife hands add to its complimentary style.

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This is Tai Kyo Ku with sticks. No other kata is responsible for as many dropped sticks or lost belt levels...

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Pinan Godan
Sichi No Jo
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The fifth pinan kata is the last and the shortest. Many of the moves in this kata are unique to this kata and like the last Naihanchi kata, they demand great power from minimal motion.

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Like the name implies, this kata is completed in only seven moves. However, it will take an entire lifetime to master.

Shushi No Kon
Ni Cho Sai
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This is an excellent bo kata that is completely adaptable to the shorter length stick, the jo. Look closely at the picture, I am not doing Passai. I am striking straight forward with the end of a bo.

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This is an nice sai kata that is mostly repetitive. Although I found this kata easy to learn, I find the sai a difficult weapon to use effectively.

Kobu Nunchaku No Kata
Plum Flower Spear
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The nunchakus were first popularized by Bruce Lee, and then, bastardized by the American public as the fictitious weapon, Numchucks. The nunchakus are plagued by misuse and misunderstanding.

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This kata was a gift from my Sensei. It is not a traditional Okinawan form. Instead, it is an adaptation of the plum flower spear form of Hung-Gar Kung-Fu.

Copyright © 2005, Robert Walsh, All Rights reserved.