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#106696 - 12/07/04 06:43 PM Wankan
Anonymous
Unregistered


I have just learned the Shotokan version of this form. Does anyone know the old version (Wankuan), and any knowledge of bunkai?

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#106697 - 12/07/04 07:03 PM Re: Wankan
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
The only Wankan I've seen was of Kanazawa Sensei performing it in a French Karate Magazine.

The article says "In Exclusiveness for official karate Kanazawa Sensei executes Wankan.

Also known under the names of SHIOFU and HITO, it is a very representative of Tomari-Te kata. The speed of projection after having dodged an attack without giving time has the adversary to react by giving to him the impression of a secret technique in Karate-Do, is one of the very important points has to observe.

Wankan belongs to the group of MATSUMURA. It has been adopted by the styles SHOTOKAN and SHITO-RYU, but the two are very different versions.

In the style SHOTOKAN, it is characterized by many attacks to the joints, HASAMI-UKE with the two hands while raising simultaneously the knee, JODAN SOTO-UKE, TETTSUIUCHI and KOKO-UKE with the knee blocking KERI, etc.

It is the shortest KATA of the SHOTOKAN. Of a very difficult execution, it finishes with YAMA-ZUKI in FUDODACHI, the very low hips."

I just did a very quick translation for you, and didn't round off the rough edges, but I think this is what you're looking for.

Except for this article I've not seen it anyplace else, thought I'd have to watch through my Shito-ryu tapes for their version.

I haven't seen Shotokan or Shito-ryu on the East Coast of the USA using this form.

Hope you find this helpful, and I appologzie for the roughness of the translation. When I do them for myself I don't try and change the 'french' nature of the language as long as I grasp the meaning.

Pleasantly,

Victor Smith
bushi no te isshinryu

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#106698 - 12/07/04 08:05 PM Re: Wankan
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
Victor, you are very right about it being a Tomari kata, however, the Matsubayashi Ryu version is the oldest version that exists today. Wankan is known for its striking combinations which are difficult to discribe on the net, but involve a lot of body shifting, in-fighting, vital point striking, immobilization techniques, generating power in small areas, etc. This was a favorite kata of Nagamine, and is very representative of the tomari style of karate. It shares similar elements with the Passai, Rohai, and Wanshu of Tomari all of which are in the Matsubayashi Ryu style. In my opinion the Matsubayashi Ryu Wankan represents it the best, it is a free flowing kata using relaxed power, something I have seen Japanese kata lacking.

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#106699 - 12/07/04 08:27 PM Re: Wankan
Anonymous
Unregistered


The article seems a little flawed - e.g, Matsumura was not a Tomari Te man. Perhaps they mean Matsumora.

"In my opinion the Matsubayashi Ryu Wankan represents it the best, it is a free flowing kata using relaxed power, something I have seen Japanese kata lacking."

This is why I would like to learn an older version. After the low spearhand in cat stance, it seems like it has no flow.

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#106700 - 12/07/04 08:48 PM Re: Wankan
Anonymous
Unregistered


The shotokan kata is as follows:

Yoi.
(1) Cross right foot over left, then step out at a 45 degree angle to the left into left back stance with wedge block. (NW)
(2) Cross left foot over right, then step out 90 degrees to the right (45 degrees compared to opening stance) into right back stance with wedge block. (NE)
(3) Bring right foot back to left (hook right foot behind left knee) and perform slow double outside forearm blocks until arms are touching in front of your body. (N)
(4) Take three steps forward, right foot, then left, followed by right again into right forward stance with slow left sweep block. (N)
(5) Right mid-level punch. (N)
(6) Left mid-level punch. (N)
(7) Draw left foot up towards right and then pivoting on right foot turn 90 degrees to the left into left cat stance with low left palm pressing block and a low right palm heel strike across left arm. (W)
(8) Step forward into right forward stance with slow left sweep block. (W)
(9) Right mid-level punch. (W)
(10) Left mid-level punch. (W)
(11) Draw left foot up towards right and then pivoting on right foot turn 180 degrees behind into left cat stance with low left palm pressing block and a low right palm heel strike across left arm. (E)
(12) Step forward into right forward stance with slow left sweep block. (E)
(13) Right mid-level punch. (E)
(14) Left mid-level punch. (E)
(15) Look over right shoulder. Pivoting on left foot, move right foot into right horse stance 90 degrees to the right with right front punch. (S)
(16) Left front kick. (S)
(17) Land in left forward stance (after kick) with left mid-level punch. (S)
(18) Right front kick. (S)
(19) Land in right forward stance (after kick) with right mid-level punch. (S)
(20) Left front kick. (S)
(21) Land in left forward stance (after kick) with left mid-level punch. (S)
(22) Load up fists on left hip. Pivoting on left foot, turn 180 degrees behind into right forward stance with U-punch. Kiai!!! (N)
Yame.

How do/es the older version/s vary? 15-21 look and feel very awkward. 1- 20, 22 feel very relaxed and flowing (IMO).

Allright, time to spoonfeed me some applications......

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#106701 - 12/07/04 09:37 PM Re: Wankan
Victor Smith Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
Hi Mark,

I didn't vet the article for historical accuracy <GRIN>, just translated it, and it does read Matsumura. At least we know what they're saying about it in France. The magazine had been picked up by a friend about 17 years ago during his business travels.

I had forgotten about the Nagamine version, but I don't do the form, just remembered I had that article (and had never translated it before).

Just comparing the Kanazawa version to the Nagamine version, they're somewhat similar, the first differences the deeper Shotokan style stances, but seem to follow similar embusen.

Mark as for application potential of the technique, not running the form.

But I can offer a 'quickie' starting at no. 8.

(8) Step forward into right forward stance with slow left sweep block. (W)
(9) Right mid-level punch. (W)
(10) Left mid-level punch. (W)

This type of sweep block can be a pressing check into the shoulder. If somebody is trying to roundhouse punch you, a strike or press to the shoulder effectively stops their attack from reaching you, then the doubls strike to complete the counter makes sense.

Working the shoulder is often sound strategy, if you hit it you damage their striking ability, you press it back destroying the alignment behind their strike, greatly weakening it.

So that's a starter.

Victor Smith
bushi no te isshinryu

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#106702 - 12/07/04 09:38 PM Re: Wankan
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
I am not a fan of describing kata in text. Short of me actually showing you I would say go by "The Essense of Okinawan Karate-do" by Shoshin Nagamine. It has pictoral depictions of all Matsubayashi Ryu kata. It is not as much the sequence(however, sequence is important, and the one you described has the basic outline of our kata although there is A LOT missing and changed) but the flavor. The way okinawan karate such as Matsubayashi and japanese kata such as Shotokan generate power is very different. The reason you feel a lack of flow is because from a perspective of Okinawan karate the Shotokan Wankan is all wrong. However, I will attempt to give you an idea of our Wankan. I will refer to direction in times on a clock with 12 o'clock directly in front from yoi.

Yoi
1. Shuto uke nekoashi dachi to 3:00 and here you must attack stepping with the right foot!
2. Shuto uke nekoashi dachi to 9:00 and again you must attack stepping with the left foot.
3. Step with right foot to 3:00 into naname zenkutsu dachi with hands chambered and double punch to 12:00 as you shift into jigotai dachi.
4. Step to 12:00 into zenkutsu dachi with a double head block. Then extend both arms parallel to the ground striking with "horizontal hammer fists".
5. Three consecutive shuto ukes in nekoashi dachi to 9:00.
Although it is all important the next part is indicative of the kata, is the most advanced techniques in the kata, and is the key sequence.
6. Step at a 45 degrees with the left foot and perform a chudan soto uke with your right arm, but the hand is in a shuto. Extend your right knee up as you perform the "block" and straighten(not completely) the leg you are standing on. You left hand is not chambered but your hand is lightly grasping your right forearm.
7. As you lower your right leg into a jigotai dachi the hand that is blocking turns over so the palm is facing out and "picks up" the attack coming in and draws it into the chamber. As this happens your left hand punches without chambering. It is a very short punch used in in-fighting, but very powerful and effective. As soon as this punch lands pull the hand under the armpit of your right arm and punch with the right hand. This is a locking/trapping technique that is very useful and very "Tomari".
8. Shift into nanami zenkutsu dachi and perform a chudan soto uke with the left arm, again with a shuto. As soon as the "block" lands shift back into jigotai dachi and bring the shuto to your right arm and place it where the deltoid and bicep meet. As you do this punch with the right hand. Again another very "Tomari" lock/trap.

This is only a portion of the kata. This sequence is repeated, there are a few zenkutsu dachi gedan ukes which follow immediately with a punch as you slide up to a shizentai dachi. There is also a sequence of punches followed by mae geris. In okinawan karate the kicks are whipped and the target is struck before extension. This series can be interpretted as stepping on an opponent's foot(possibly digging a toe into the instep) punching with gyaku zuki and then whipping a kick into the knee/ inner thigh/groin/lower abdomen. I have already written too much and I fear that what I wrote does not give the kata justice. But this is a small taste of Wankan.

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#106703 - 12/07/04 11:32 PM Re: Wankan
Anonymous
Unregistered


Actually, you nearly have convinced me to by the book. It's on the list of fifty or so "must have" MA books I desperately want. It's been bumped up to the top now.....

All advice is appreciated.

Is it normal for self defense from kata to involve wrapping the opponent up until they can't fight back, then throwing finishing strikes?

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#106704 - 12/08/04 01:30 PM Re: Wankan
Anonymous
Unregistered


i know/practise wankan, train shotokan and am on the east coast. in my current club nobody knows or trains it, altho some have heard of it. i learned it from my previous instructor (shotokan as well), who liked to learn/train the more esoteric kata.

wankan is interesting. its probably the shortest kata, and in the shotokan version only has one kiai. is this just an anomoly? is the second half of the kata missing?

its also missing from nakayama's best karate series, which is where many shotokan stylists turn for their kata instruction.

i like it b/c it has some interesting body movement/techniques that remind me of other kata, but with a different flavor.

examples:

the opening wedge blocks are like gojushiho. the knee up arms together posture is unique to this kata, as is advancing three steps forward without any other technique issued. strange. the next steps reminisce of sochin. turns into cat stance with scooping grab and strike similiar to nijushiho. the return down the embusen is simple, yet a practical technique. variations found in many shotokan kata; jion, jiin, gojushiho, heain yondan. the end movement harkens back to bassai dai, but you turn behind, low and almost ducking. strike high + low. very self defence minded.

mark, i think it is normal for good kata application to progress to a point where an oppenent is "finished." kick/punch evolves into a strike, into grab, break, throw, sumbmit/finish so they are no longer a threat. it certainly enrichens the kata experience.

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#106705 - 12/08/04 03:46 PM Re: Wankan
Anonymous
Unregistered


The whole point of me learening Wankan is that it is rarely practiced, and is looked down on.

I want to do a couple of things: I know a very short sequence of kata can come up with a muiltitude of applications. Being a short kata i.e, a small series of short sequences, it should have tons.

It has some unique movements - so in theory anyway, some unique SD techs.

I want small kata to have a bit mroe prestiege - Tekki/Naihanchin, Wnasu/Enpi, Hangetsu/Seisan, (and Passai, but it verges on being long) have had some of the best SD I have seen.

Hey, I'm a big fan of Tomari Te. Some people think Shorin Ryu is entriely Shuri Te!

And I want to do all these for my 3rd Dan Grading which comes up, at earliest in March 2007. I'll go for that when I feel comfortable having the title of "Sensei", rather than Senpai.

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