Kata


Kata is the form side of Karate training. Each kata is a pre-arranged combination of attacking and defensive techniques.


These set patterns were used as a method of recording the techniques of the day. It is widely believed that they originally were their own individual fighting systems. Over the years as Karate has developed, Kata has come to mean different things to different people. Most commonly today they are used for Grading students and winning medals in competition.
However you can quite confidently say that this was not the original intention of the Masters that created them.




Grade


Kata


10th Kyu White Belt


n/a


9th Kyu White Belt


Yellow Tag


n/a


8th Kyu Yellow Belt


Kihon


7th Kyu Orange Belt


Gekisai dai ichi


6th Kyu Red Belt


Heian Shodan


5th Kyu Blue Belt


Gekisai dai ni


4th Kyu Purple Belt


Heian yondan


3rd Kyu Brown Belt


Bassai Dai
Gekisai dai san


2nd Kyu Brown Belt

White Stripe


Bassai Dai
Saifa


1st Kyu Brown Belt

Black Stripe


Empi
Seiyunchin


1st Dan Black Belt


Shisochin
Hangetsu


2nd Dan Black Belt


Kanku Sho
Sanseiru



When learning Kata it is important that we learn how to perform it. This helps us retain the techniques, but more importantly we learn to apply it to self defence situations relevant to today, this is called Bunkai / oyo.

Performance

Performance is how we learn the moves of a kata. It is by constant repetition that this helps us remember the order in which the moves are in. Learning and training in performance, without doubt, helps with fitness and coordination. In performance we are more concerned with the aesthetic look of the kata.

Bunkai / Oyo

Bunkai / Oyo is the practical application of the techniques of the kata. The original bunkai has been lost over the years with nobody being actually able to say ‘this 100% means this’. But there are certain clues that can be researched to form an opinion of what a technique was likely to be used for, mainly by what the technique looks like. The rule is: the more simplistic, the easier it is to be applied in the heat of a confrontation. In the Atarashii Yoake system of Karate we have incorporated 12 kata into our grading syllabus taken from the Shotokhan and GoJu systems of Karate. This gives students a varied range of Karate concepts and principles. Kata performance varies from style to style, it can even vary within a style ,depending on who taught who. The difference's are often very small.

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