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#204214 - 11/13/05 03:12 PM Secret techniques in kata
CVV Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Belgium
Do kata contain secret techniques, not visible in the execution of the kata ?

In Saifa the 2 time double punch right after mae-geri is changed from the original technique, kaiko-ken (crabshell fist). Is this a secret teaching? The angel in wich kaiko-ken is delivered onto the ST18 is significant to obtain optimum effect (burning sensation below nipples and a sharp penetrating pain, opponent tends to 'collaps' inward losing power in schoulder, chest and arms).

I was told that all kata have these secret techniques, however I was only thaught a few in that way.

Any of you have knowledge of these 'secret' techniques ??

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#204215 - 11/13/05 04:32 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
shoshinkan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2662
Loc: UK
cant say,




Its a secret
_________________________
Jim Neeter

www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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#204216 - 11/13/05 10:13 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
BuDoc Offline
The doctor will see you now

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1067
Loc: USA and Abroad
Not secret techniques. A better phrase would be hidden.

They are there to find if you know how/where to look, and are willing to study hard.

Page
_________________________
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#204217 - 11/14/05 12:43 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: BuDoc]
oldman Offline
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Registered: 07/28/04
Posts: 5884
Hidden in plain sight.

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#204218 - 11/14/05 09:43 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: oldman]
phoenixsflame Offline
Member

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
Agreed, hidden in plain sight. These aren't secret techniques as in "This is a blow that will rearrange a persons organs" they are advanced Bunkai...

Would you teach a white belt a neck break? Arm break? if they've studied for less than a month, no control, no real understanding of their own bodies...
But, three years later they are more advanced... You revisit a Kata and say. "You've mastered this Kata, now let me show you what is really inside this Kata."

And you show the person who has been doing this Kata for three years, the movements between the movements. Not only will it make their forms stronger, it will give them a deeper understanding of the martial art.

Note : There are also little tidbit for people to know, almost all Neko Ashi Dachi (Cat Footed Stances) are implied kicks. Thus, the Bunkai sometimes will reflect that, sometimes not. The implied kick can be a knee press, a mae geri... It can be many different foot forms. Some are even locks (Especially downward blocks, the upward rising hand being the pulling hands, the downward falling hand being the pressing hand and the leg/heel being a fulcrum.)
_________________________
While everything changes, nothing is truly lost.

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#204219 - 11/14/05 05:52 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
CVV Offline
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Loc: Belgium
In view of history (pre-20th century). Trademark, effective techniques would be hidden, even to students in order not to give them away to easy, in view of possible confrontation. As such they are secret. Even in recent history there are examples of masters that left out certain things from kata and not all can be explained as evolution in kata learning (the 3 year example from phoenixflame).
Eg Norisato of Ruei Ryu only made his family style 'public' around 1970. In the 2 video of Shinpo Matayoshi for Tsunami productions, he leaves out pieces in the kata he demonstrates. His family karate style, Kingai Ryu, is only known to a few people.
I see 2 evolutions wich led to these secrets :
- as said before, to reveal certain techniques only to most trusted students (pre20th century secracy)
- in view of the evolution after 20th century, teaching in public schools, the national intrest (Japan) in the 1930 with standardization of execution and de-barbaricification (???? = transition to sport), the international intrest from 1960's onward, certain 'dangerous' applications are no longer focused and referred to as 'old way' (koryu).

Specifically towards Goju Ryu, Miyagi sensei standardized the execution of the kata sometimes leaving out or altering techniques in the execution of the kata, having applications in a different way than shown in the kata.
These are referred to sometimes as secret techniques in kata
In Goju-ryu Sesan kata there is a mae-geri towards the end, before delivering a gyaku-zuki with tora guchi sliding into neko ashi dachi. This kick was explained to me as an upward heel kick into the inner side of the hip joint (LIV 11, trying to damage the hip joint).

Are there simular teachings in other styles, or is this unique to Goju Ryu to explain it this way.Or am I talking total nonsense ??

As for neko ashi dachi, I was told it was also used as starting position for throwing sand to the attacker, first digging the food in the sand.

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#204220 - 11/15/05 08:54 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
phoenixsflame Offline
Member

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
Quote:

As for neko ashi dachi, I was told it was also used as starting position for throwing sand to the attacker, first digging the food in the sand.





Interesting Bunkai Good to know!

There are definately more techniques in the Kata like the one you spoke of. I think one of the reasons that the Kata were encoded in such a way, is that once a student reaches a certain level, they can begin to see the advanced Bunkai/applications that are latent in the forms that aren't taught. I think there may be Bunkai that was placed in Kata adjacent to each other that has yet to be really discovered (A continuation of Bunkai from one Kata to another, like the Heian's.)
_________________________
While everything changes, nothing is truly lost.

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#204221 - 11/25/05 11:31 PM Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello CVV:

I'm afraid ENGLISH is a language I speak fairly well. If you're able to better translate I'll be sure to understand to what you refer... (ie Be careful utilizing too many Japanese terms.... some might not truly know them).

Jeff

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#204222 - 11/25/05 11:50 PM Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
Ronin1966 Offline
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Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello CVV:

If you or I spent serious time using a particular tool, we would hopefully become very good with it through our persistance, correct? The first time, the second time, not so good. By the 15th year you understand all kinds of things about it, which you did not (in a body sense) initally. In that sense "secret" things are never secret.... you can uncover anything if you examine and explore it long enough.

As for real secrets, others have described previously above. Do you want the children to understand all kinds of deadly and dangerous explainations for their movements? They are not demonstrating the body mechanics even close to correctly, you want to give them even more dangerous material for which they are not ready emotionally/psychologically?!

Adults are no different in that regard. Emotionally they are not as likely to ignore the dangers. Yet they have not done the fundamental stuff and absorbed that level of body information yet. They are doing middle school work, you want to hand them the college level information immediately?

Secret stuff, might well be secret for another good reason. Consider what happens if the secret stuff is subtle... and requires microscopic details to be understood. It takes a blessed long time to have a good subtle level of well understood material. You get the basic idea quickly, but the nuances, the small and tiny things takes far more time and exploration. If that is the definition of "secret" do you just share that on the first day....? Not likely.

You start with very simple, very basic and over a long time, you point out smaller and smaller details they are ready and able to explore. Before then you'd drive a normal person mad with the minute level of things they might be required to "get". Its all good but you start with something that's easy to understand and progress from that point...

And btw, no your explaination of Seisan is not "alien"...
not remotely.

Jeff

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#204223 - 11/26/05 01:19 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
Mark Hill Offline
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Registered: 08/12/04
Posts: 1068
Loc: Australia
CVV: While Matayoshi may not share the secrets of his family, Kingai Ryu came from China, as did Pan Gai Noon Ryu.

Do you mean what the family teaches is secret, or all Kingai Ryu is secret?
_________________________
It takes a village to stone somebody to death.

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#204224 - 11/26/05 01:22 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
I don't look at it as 'secret'...perhaps 'unexplored' is a better (although less romantic) term.

think of it this way:
There are many standalone Te Waza in Goju practice. Replacing any techniques within the 'standard' kata would not be discovering a secret...it would be exploring a possibility.

any closed fist in kata can be opened(Nukite) or formed into the 2nd knuckle strike w/4 fingers(Hiraken) or one(Keikoken/Chukoken). etc, the variations are endless.

instead of bogging your brain down memorizing 'secret strike A goes with known technique B' - instead work on Waza drills and learn the principals of the standalone strikes...then you can apply/adapt during kata depending on what reflex at the time feels comfortable/comes quickest. or, if your imagery is good, do whatever adaptation depending on what your 'opponent' is doing. Double punch in Saifa? for fun, try with seiryuto to the collarbones.

theres the real secret....there is no spoon.
(you guys should spend some more time in the Zen forum.)

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#204225 - 11/26/05 05:33 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
CVV Offline
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Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Belgium
T. Kisaki sensei said that Miyagi sensei never thaught bunkai. He said you will figure it out yourselve. One of his favourite quote's was 'Think !'.
In his book about Goju ryu history, M.Higaonna sensei talks about secrecy and the approval he needed to publish certain knowledge on history. He claims the same on his latest DVD sessions about Goju ryu.
Before WWII Miyagi sensei would teach like his teacher, teaching sanchin and 1 - 3 other kata. He changed the teaching method after WWII in the order of kata we know now. I guess when concentrating on a smaller curriculum, the exploration in it's application will be intenser. This leads me to the conclusion that nowadays principle is thaught before essence. I think this was not the case in the past (pre 20th century). However back then, martial art was part of a broader education.
Thanks to research of people like McCarthy and others, some of this ancient 'essence' was opened up to a wider public through their publications.
Upon exploring this, I had to think about certain explanations/thaughts/lessons I received from instructors. T. Uchiage sensei once said that every Goju kata has 2 secret techniques and showed some of them. I remember S. Akira sensei explaining on how self defense technique would rather use open hand or on-knuckle fist then seiken (closed fist). The reflection upon kata is through self exploration but also through instruction. In that regard, knowledge from the past was not always transmitted, at least not openly and that is how I 'feel' about secrecy in kata.
In S. Nagamine sensei's book 'Tales of Okinawa's great Masters' there is a passage about Kyan sensei in a confrontation with a judoka where he would stick his thumb on the innerside of the man's cheeck and trying to pull off the skin/flesh of the cheeck from the bone with his hand to render him imobile and in a lot of pain. He comments upon the use of this technique as 'his knowledge of such things clearly demonstrated his understanding of technique no longer practiced in modern karate'.
In the last 10 - 15 years (since I stopped focussing on competition) I try to research deeper into these subjects. I managed to find some applications on my own (tested in free continous fighting) but am also intriged by knowledge of others and 'older generations'.
In researching upon 'secret techniques' or 'secret teachings' I am more interested in the perception of 'secret' than the actual technique. That is why I opened up this thread.

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#204226 - 11/26/05 07:40 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
NEAS Offline
Banned Member

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 168
I think I would rather see the application of kata than work out the hidden moves. I like to automate techniques to a usable standard not do academic study although a long time ago i worked out that some blocks are also attacks.Some stances have a specific use.So if any body hqas some workable bunkei please let me know

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#204227 - 11/26/05 10:36 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
ahh...sorry I misread your intended direction of the thread...I like it even better.

There are a few ways I've seen 'secret' techniques reveiled.
1. They were made up by the person teaching. Mostly in good faith, the instructor teaches a variation that they find effective....but throws in the word 'secret' to imply 'privaledged knowledge', and in fact, it is...but not necessaraly handed down from anyone. The variation may have taken years for the sensei to discover and test...in that regard, they may be teaching many secrets in each class.

2. Plain and simply: marketing and student retention. If the student gets the impression of being the lucky winner of 'ancient secrets', they might be pursuaded to re-up their contract for another year.

3. Humor. I've found some Japanese in particular to at times have a sadistical twist while keeping a deadpan poker face. In Japanese, if someone reveils a 'secret' and then proceeds to tell you that it was a secret, then in most cases, they are screwing with you. It's as if the directness in telling you 'it's a secret' negates the secret they are reveiling. In a word, it's dry sarcasm. Perhaps this is lost in translation sometimes and the 'secret' is propegated overseas.

4. Actual privilaged information. I've never had direct access to it. I'm not rich, well connected, a family member of bushi class nor a famous karateka. I have no hope of gaining such status, nor do I think I'd want to invest in seeking it. Karate is not a status symbol for me and I'm not trying to sell books...it's just Karate and if I have to learn something the hard way or not learn any 'secrets' at all, fine. I'll still enjoy my path.

People can claim all they want of their secret techniques and direct lineage...the people I seek to train and learn with/from are the people not making these claims even if they are true.

overall, I think the whole notion of 'secret techniques' has only served to misdirect people.

Great idea for a topic, CVV.
(btw, what does CVV stand for? ...or is it a secret? lol)

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#204228 - 11/27/05 03:59 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
CVV Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Belgium
Quote:

(btw, what does CVV stand for? ...or is it a secret? lol)



They are initials of my name (Chris Vanvelthoven).

I was able to train with Osamu Hirano sensei on several occasions, in the last 15 years. He has his own organization (Kuyukai). He would never talk about 'secret' but about 'koryu' (=old way). I have never had to pay him for instruction nor did he ever ask me to be part of his organization. I always felt he was very open in his instruction but training would never focus on 'deceisive technique' (I mean to end physical confict). He would however touch the subject and explain briefly exactly how and where to attack for certain applications.
Regulary (every 2 years), I am able to receive instruction from Takeshi Uchiage sensei (his father, Kenzo Uchiage sensei, received instruction from Miyagi sensei at Ristumeikan University), and he talked about the secret techniques in kata and that every Goju kata had 2. These 'secrets' are not specific techniques, but possibilities you have from certain poses in kata, not shown in the kata. I will probably train at a seminar with him next easter, I'll ask more in detail. We are part of his organization but we never had to pay him for instruction nor for his organization. His focus on training is correct basics in kata (stance, breathing, distribution of power/energy) and history/evolution of kata.
From the Okinawan training method's (we were affiliated to IOGKF in the 80thies) I retain focus on strengthning and hardening and partner drills (yakusoku kumite, sanbon kumite, kakie, kata with partner in straight line, ...).
Never was there a focus on 'conflict ending' training.
That's why I conclude that todays training (at least here in Europe) is focused on principles and not on essence.
It is my believe that pre 20th century training had more focus on essence, how to end physical conflict, and that these techniques were not shared openly. That is how I perceive 'secret techniques'. The research into the past and the open communication tools now available as well as the possibilities to travel, open up a lot of possibilities for research in these matters and 'secrets' become more open knowledge.
Opening up these secrets, has to do with level of understanding as well as willingness to share. From the priciples, the essence can be researched.

NEAS, I have an application I was never able to test for it's useability and value in fighting. If you want to rip off an ear you have to pull from the lower end upwards. Never from the top down.

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#204229 - 11/27/05 04:24 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Mark Hill]
CVV Offline
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Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Belgium
Quote:

CVV: While Matayoshi may not share the secrets of his family, Kingai Ryu came from China, as did Pan Gai Noon Ryu.

Do you mean what the family teaches is secret, or all Kingai Ryu is secret?




I am not to well known with the te-art the Matayoshi family practised. I was told that his father brought most of the family art from China from several sources(nomadic tribes from the north, boxing in Shangai (from there he referred to the style as Kingai ryu) and southern (Fuzhou) styles. There was also knowledge from within the family from before his fathers travels to China. He was also a students of Gokenki and learned some hakutsuru (white crane) kata from him.
He also studied under Kyan.
To my knowledge , he did not instruct his te art openly. I believe that one of his Kobudo students was also instructed in the te art of his family (Gakiya Yoshiaki) but I am not sure of that.

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#204230 - 11/28/05 04:58 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
phoenixsflame Offline
Member

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
All blocks are attacks. All attacks are also blocks. Secret Bunkai! Do not pass go, do not collect one hundred dollars.
_________________________
While everything changes, nothing is truly lost.

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#204231 - 11/28/05 05:00 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Quote:

All blocks are attacks. All attacks are also blocks. Secret Bunkai! Do not pass go, do not collect one hundred dollars.




I don't like that explanation.It makes it sound like a person should just block with force and that's the true meaning. Blocks are much more in my opinion,otherwise why the chamber?
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#204232 - 11/28/05 08:53 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: BrianS]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5822
Loc: USA
Brian

I think what Phoenix means (and please correct me if I misunderstood) is not to get hung up on the word "block"--which implies a static, mechanical kinda thing.

My first karate teacher focused on "block" being many things---almost all "active."

Blocks as strikes, blocks as "set-ups" for throws, blocks as "shock absorber," blocks as a means of unbalanceing, blocks as means of penetration of a center-line, etc.


Edited by cxt (11/28/05 08:57 AM)
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#204233 - 11/28/05 11:30 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: cxt]
dmsdc Offline
Member

Registered: 07/27/05
Posts: 37
The receiving motions in kata (that is anything that doesn't look like a straight line punch) can be viewed at several levels. Since most people don't get past level 1 for any number of reasons then the other levels seem to be thought of as secret.

level 1 - impacting the attack without footwork (you hit their strike with your blocking posture from a static standing position)
level 2 - impacting the the attack with footwork. (you create a moving line of force against their attack with your posture and using footwork) This usually results in either you impacting them in a vital area or stealing their balance by disruption
level 3 - blending with the motion of their attack so that your receiving posture becomes the fulcrum by which they help you steal their balance and impale themselves on another part of your body, the floor, or a nearby object - or they are placed in such a position of compromise that you have your pick of the menu on how you continue to do them damage.

Within each of these levels are the opportunities to lock or destroy joints, seize flesh or vital points, and activate the flinch response by doing things like grabbing the genitals, spitting, flicking the eyes, etc.

The secret is being able to blend these levels of skills into continuous motion that leaves the attacker without balance, without consciousness, and with pain if they ever wake up.

Martial arts is a full body experience. You fight the man, not their arm or their leg.
_________________________
happy training, Dana

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#204234 - 11/28/05 12:15 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
NEAS Offline
Banned Member

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 168
Quote:
All blocks are attacks. All attacks are also blocks. Secret Bunkai! Do not pass go, do not collect one hundred dollars.


Neas;s statement.
You make as much sense as you always do what are you talking about?
Ok.
Perhaps you might like to give another use for soto -uke apart from being taught as a block?
And the money in this country is pound notes pal .


Quote:
All attacks are also blocks


Neas's statement/question

Would you consider a head butt to be part of trad karate?
If so how is that a block?
If not what style of karate have you studied?

Please make your answers legible

Neas

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#204235 - 11/28/05 12:20 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
JoelM Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 6355
Loc: Georgia, USA
Quote:

Please make your answers legible




The pot quoting the kettle black.
_________________________
We should all take ourselves seriously...and then crumple that image up and toss it out the window.

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#204236 - 11/28/05 12:38 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: JoelM]
NEAS Offline
Banned Member

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 168
Hi. What is wrong with what I have just written?
Perhaps from your extensive training you might like to also answer the given questions?

Or are you perhaps a keyboard warrior?

Karate is a fighting art although apart from some people what I see and read it has turned into a mockery by so called key board warriors. Then a person might ponder on the Karate bashers as they are called. So my friend how about you answer the questions?

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#204237 - 11/28/05 12:54 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
JoelM Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 6355
Loc: Georgia, USA
The fact of the matter is that you ask others to provide legible answers when half of your posts on this site are so jumbled it is nearly impossible to understand you.

Maybe if you took the same responsibility you ask of others upon yourself you would be more warmly recieved.

No, I have not studied karate, so I cannot answer your questions as pertaining to that particular set of styles.

Be more respectful and you shall recieve the same in return.

PS-The monetary unit in the country phoenixsflame is posting from is dollars, pal.
_________________________
We should all take ourselves seriously...and then crumple that image up and toss it out the window.

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#204238 - 11/28/05 01:57 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: BrianS]
NEAS Offline
Banned Member

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 168
Quote
I don't like that explanation.It makes it sound like a person should just block with force and that's the true meaning. Blocks are much more in my opinion,otherwise why the chamber?



Neas’s comment’s.
Brian can you explain in a bit more detail?

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#204239 - 11/28/05 02:11 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: JoelM]
NEAS Offline
Banned Member

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 168
Quote
The fact of the matter is that you ask others to provide legible answers when half of your posts on this site are so jumbled it is nearly impossible to understand you.

Maybe if you took the same responsibility you ask of others upon yourself you would be more warmly recieved.

No, I have not studied karate, so I cannot answer your questions as pertaining to that particular set of styles.

Be more respectful and you shall recieve the same in return.



Neas’s answer.


Most of my education(90%) was in Germany. In German. I read and write better German than English.
Although as you can see my English writing skills are improving? What has that got to do with respect.?
Alles Klar.?

Hopefully now we can get back to the question I posted?

Danke.

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#204240 - 11/28/05 02:13 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: JoelM]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5822
Loc: USA

JoelM

"the pot quoting the kettle"

Classic!!!!!
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#204241 - 11/28/05 02:15 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
JoelM Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 6355
Loc: Georgia, USA
I have PM'd you, NEAS, we will not discuss this on the forum anymore.

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#204242 - 11/28/05 02:21 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: cxt]
NEAS Offline
Banned Member

Registered: 10/30/05
Posts: 168
Quote
"the pot quoting the kettle"



Neas’s Answer.
“The pot quoting the kettle”
Considering I am meant to be getting a hard time over my written English you could at least get your written English correct.

So do you have anything to say about Karate?

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#204243 - 11/28/05 02:22 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Ok, but you asked for it.

Quote:

You make as much sense as you always do what are you talking about?




I was purposefully being short in my response, however I will lengthen this response in hopes that you can understand.

Quote:


Ok.
Perhaps you might like to give another use for soto -uke apart from being taught as a block?




Give me something harder. Soto-uke is a powerful arm break, its also an attack to the muscle of the bicep, or the neck, or any other side striking body part. You cross yourself with the Soto-Uke, the first hand crossing is the grab to control the initial attack. The "block" is the strike.

All blocks are Strikes.


Quote:

And the money in this country is pound notes pal .




.... ? Do you want an award for being from the UK?




Quote:

Neas's statement/question

Would you consider a head butt to be part of trad karate?
If so how is that a block?
If not what style of karate have you studied?




Head butts are apart of any martial art, its a last means effort. The best example of a "block" with a headbutt is a smother. If someone has you wrapped in their arms, you bress your head into their shoulder to arch your back and provide a small space for movement. If we're talking about blocking an attack with your forehead. A prime example would be if your arms were being held behind you. You can avoid and trap an attack with your jaw, although its not adviseable, its something that can be done.

All attacks are also blocks.



Quote:

Please make your answers legible




So long as you make yours legible as well.

Please try to act with more respect, it doesn't befit martial artists to be unkind to each other. I think of those people here as my equals and betters, they are my peer's of the arts in which I love.

The Dojo-Kun spring to mind here... Something about respecting others? ;P
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#204244 - 11/28/05 02:26 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Sorry to double post, but this strikes me as something I should not just edit in. Two different focii.

Quote:

Quote
I don't like that explanation.It makes it sound like a person should just block with force and that's the true meaning. Blocks are much more in my opinion,otherwise why the chamber?



Neas’s comment’s.
Brian can you explain in a bit more detail?




He brought much detail into it. The concept of Chambering is in and of itself an entire block/strike. If you delve into the depth of your training, you will see that there is no motion without reason. These movments, these twists and turns and "seemingly" unneeded motions such as the Chamber in a block, the twist of a wrist in a strike, etc, etc...

These are the "Secret" techniques. These are the Attacks that are blocks... If you ask about a straight punch as a block, I'd have you research "Cut Punching" the concept of punching along another persons arm line and pushing it away with the twist of your elbow to strike them.

If you ask about a kick, well. Its an obvious answer...

Elbow strikes? Come on...

Shuto? Kakitae? Open hand techniques? Strikes as blocks? Its pretty evident if you take the entire technique into consideration instead of simply the very last end bit of it.
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#204245 - 11/28/05 02:27 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Well Chris, looks like the thread just got a page longer since we last wrote...luckily it's pretty much at where you left it.
Intersting about the 2 secrets per goju kata...I never heard that. I'd think there were alot more since most kata are at least 150 years old and passed thru at least half a dozen Sensei, each one teaching their own application ideas. each one with a different set of 'secrets'.

If this DID happen (I'm not saying it did): Nobody could really blame Miyagi for using the notion of learning 'secrets' to college students in order to boost popularity of Karate practice and acceptance in Japan.

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#204246 - 11/28/05 02:42 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
cxt Offline
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NEAS


It was not some kind of attack or slam at you.

Sorry that you misunderstood.

My comment was not directed at you or toward you at all--it was directed at Joel M for a really good turn of phrase.

It was funny turn of phrase on Joel M part.

See the difference???

No insult or put down was meant or implied.

In regard to your second question--I already DID comment on the topic at hand.


Edited by cxt (11/28/05 02:43 PM)
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#204247 - 11/28/05 02:44 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
NEAS Offline
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Thank you for your answer. Nice techniques.I think that Soto-uke also can be used for the start of a wrist lock if the wrist is grabbed by an opponent.
As regards head butts again nice techniques although I think there are more ways of using them.

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#204248 - 11/28/05 02:51 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Quote:

Thank you for your answer. Nice techniques.I think that Soto-uke also can be used for the start of a wrist lock if the wrist is grabbed by an opponent.
As regards head butts again nice techniques although I think there are more ways of using them.





I agree, I think that every technique that we practice has hundreds if not thousands of applications. Its just a matter of training your eyes to see them and your body to practice.
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#204249 - 11/28/05 02:57 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
NEAS Offline
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Quote
These are the "Secret" techniques. These are the Attacks that are blocks... If you ask about a straight punch as a block, I'd have you research "Cut Punching" the concept of punching along another persons arm line and pushing it away with the twist of your elbow to strike them.



Neas’s answer.
This is good stuff. Please feel free to go into more detail

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#204250 - 11/28/05 03:02 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Quote:

Quote
These are the "Secret" techniques. These are the Attacks that are blocks... If you ask about a straight punch as a block, I'd have you research "Cut Punching" the concept of punching along another persons arm line and pushing it away with the twist of your elbow to strike them.



Neas’s answer.
This is good stuff. Please feel free to go into more detail




No problem, Cut punching is an incredibly versitile technique... When someone throws a straight thrust punch, or even a hook punch... Well, ok. When someone throws an attack using their arms, you can cut punch it if you're skilled enough. Follow the arm line and muscle down to the armpit... You want to punch either above (if its a low technique) and down into the chest, or under and up into the throat (for a high technique)

The trick is reading body motions. Its one of the techniques behind the twist of the arm at the end of the attack. If you twist, you can throw their attack away from you and control them with that little nudge.

You can also do cut kicking, but it is insanely hard. I'd say three to five times harder (Depending on the technique) than the cut punching. The reason for this is the timing is harder to get, and the precision is harder. To cut kick, you actually use your knee to deflect the kick or do a thrust kick and use your calf to circumvent the attack.

Its hard to explain with words, I'd gladly do a video if I could. *laughs* But, I've tried to explain it as best as I can, if anyone has any questions just ask. I'll try to answer them as best as I can.
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#204251 - 11/28/05 03:19 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
NEAS Offline
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Quote..
NEAS, I have an application I was never able to test for it's usability and value in fighting. If you want to rip off an ear you have to pull from the lower end upwards. Never from the top down.



Neas's answer
At one time where I came from the habit( not from myself) was to bite noses off. Many were caught and were sent to prison where they could boast about their performance. Many Attacks were with weapons or by large groups.


Thank you for that advice but most of my(legal) fights have ended with the opponent being knocked out. The kind of guys I fought would never have given me the chance to do as you suggest. They were to busy pounding me. However I would like to hear of some other fighting applications. This time related to kata perhaps? Not that I would ever use it.

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#204252 - 11/28/05 03:32 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
cxt Offline
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NEAS

Giving you the benfit of the doubt here.

But I took the time to respond to your post--and I did so in a polite manner overlooking your 2 direct insults to me.

The proper thing to do here is to let me know that you read my post and that you understand that I was NOT attacking you.

Also would be nice if you would extend the same courtesy to me that I extended to you and say your sorry for being insulting.

Up to you of course---but given that english is new to you, I thought it best to make sure that you understood what is considered proper.
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#204253 - 11/28/05 03:53 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
Ed_Morris Offline
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while people are getting their personal things sorted out, I actually do have 2 questions for everyone.

Did anyone read CVV's post where he explained that the thread is not so much about actual techniques so much as the notion of 'secret' itself? CVV is the author of the thread...his name is Chris. ...just wanted to make sure that I didn't misunderstand the nature of the thread again.

My other question is do you think its a growing trend for people to only read the end of threads or has it got to do with attention span? thanks again.

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#204254 - 11/28/05 04:26 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
cxt Offline
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Ed

Yes, its a growing trend--which is why I took the time to read the whole thing prior to posting.


Edited by cxt (11/28/05 04:26 PM)
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#204255 - 11/28/05 04:59 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
CVV Offline
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Quote:

Intersting about the 2 secrets per goju kata...I never heard that. I'd think there were alot more since most kata are at least 150 years old and passed thru at least half a dozen Sensei, each one teaching their own application ideas. each one with a different set of 'secrets'.

If this DID happen (I'm not saying it did): Nobody could really blame Miyagi for using the notion of learning 'secrets' to college students in order to boost popularity of Karate practice and acceptance in Japan.





I think the essence of the 2 secrets is 'THINK !'.
The 2 secrets talk about the possibilities, not obvious in the executed technique. As said, I will ask next time I meet Uchiage sensei.
I'll give another example. In Kururunfa kata, their is an elbow strike with a nukite held half chamber (before chest).
Focus is on elbow strike but you best fight with 2 hands. The nukite hand is able to deliver strike on groing/chest/throath/eyes. This seems obvious when I point the focus on that however, the nukite half chamber is not found in other Goju-ryu kata.
These are a kind of secrets that is pointed as hidden technique, but lets you think about the application not obvious as primary technique deliverd in the kata. (what does the other hand/why/examine offensive and defensive possibilities).
Another type of secrets is the vital points (as mentioned in the Bubishi) and how to attack them. When learning application, I was learned how to attack certain points but it was never explained to me as attacking 'the 36 vital points' as mentioned in the Bubishi. In the west, before 1990, there was only some vague reference of books with 'secret' information that existed. Thanks to English translations (McCarthy being the most popular), I was able to reference what I learned with that. This opened new possibilities in researching techniques and cross referencing several sources.
To give an example, there is a picture of Miyagi sensei and Kyoda sensei from a pose of saifa. The kick demonstrated is in current version of the kata is a mae-geri. In the picture however, it seems like a toe kick into CV1.
Was the information, as presented in the Bubishi, structured to be learned methodically and to be applied (I do think so but only in a small circle) or was it just a reference manual and less important in regard to training ?
Was it part of the secret teachings or not ?

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#204256 - 11/28/05 05:12 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Quote:

while people are getting their personal things sorted out, I actually do have 2 questions for everyone.

Did anyone read CVV's post where he explained that the thread is not so much about actual techniques so much as the notion of 'secret' itself? CVV is the author of the thread...his name is Chris. ...just wanted to make sure that I didn't misunderstand the nature of the thread again.

My other question is do you think its a growing trend for people to only read the end of threads or has it got to do with attention span? thanks again.





Well, really I've followed the whole thing and posted my thoughts on the "secretness" of it all. I was just responding to questions about actual technique.
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#204257 - 11/28/05 09:03 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
Ed_Morris Offline
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I can't really contribute to your questions...I don't believe there are any secrets OR 'secrets' (with or without quotes). or, if they really are truely secrets...if they come my way, great - but I'm not about to set out on a quest for a holy grail.

[edit] I should mention that I do believe there is privileged information that sensei's do or do not share with students. it's a subtle distinction, I know...but I'd just like to remove the mysticism and the possible misrepresentation surrounding the word 'secret'.

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#204258 - 11/28/05 09:55 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
ButterflyPalm Offline
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Sometimes 'secrets' are just 'delayed transmissions'

I can see the reluctance of some masters (past and present) being reluctant to just freely (not in the monetary sense) give away knowledge which they themselves had a hard time getting.

Rightly or wrongly was and always will be more of an individual moral issue and the issue of 'what if the knowledge goes to the grave with you?' didn't figure too largely.
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#204259 - 11/29/05 11:17 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: ButterflyPalm]
cxt Offline
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Butterfly

"Delayed transmission"

Excellent way to put it!

Had not thought of that way before---but it makes really good sense.
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#204260 - 11/29/05 12:50 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
MikeC Offline
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The answer is yes. There are applications and knowledge that cannot be simply gained by studying the kata. The Okinawa instructors hold back knowledge, our CI at the International level when teaching at a seminar had come back from seeing his instructor and he was surprised that his teacher had provided him new knowledge he had not seen before. Our CI is 60+years and had been studying with his teacher for 50+ years.

In the Okinawa Arts, the teacher/student paradigm is important. The feed back from this relationship is important as much as it is a test of character for the student; it provides an avenue for the teacher to be selective in imparting knowledge.

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#204261 - 11/29/05 02:58 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: MikeC]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Quote:

The answer is yes. There are applications and knowledge that cannot be simply gained by studying the kata. The Okinawa instructors hold back knowledge, our CI at the International level when teaching at a seminar had come back from seeing his instructor and he was surprised that his teacher had provided him new knowledge he had not seen before. Our CI is 60+years and had been studying with his teacher for 50+ years.

In the Okinawa Arts, the teacher/student paradigm is important. The feed back from this relationship is important as much as it is a test of character for the student; it provides an avenue for the teacher to be selective in imparting knowledge.





You know, I've been thinking about this a bit lately. And something my Sensei's instructor said kind of rang true.

He said :

"We teach these forms to everyone, no matter their responsibility, their control or their ethics. We train them in good faith that they shall use them with control, but we do not teach them everything. Would you teach a White Belt a neck break? Arm break? We guage through time and effort who is responsibile for their actions and only then can we show them the Bunkai in which there is true danger."

Its a summary, I don't remember his exact words but they ran across those lines.
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#204262 - 11/29/05 03:01 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
harlan Offline
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So, in your estimation, when do you show the 'neck breaking'?

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#204263 - 11/29/05 03:04 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: harlan]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Quote:

So, in your estimation, when do you show the 'neck breaking'?





My estimation?

I have no idea. I think there is no set time. We can't say from student to student when one will act with responsibility.

I've known some very, VERY irresponsible 3rd Dan+...

Yet I've known some very responsible and respectable white belts. I'd say after Kihon is truly grasped it would be fine to teach a person with whom there is no ego these "techniques" the harsher, harder Bunkai.

But, that system is flawed because it is a very personal thing. Its flawed in todays world because I can't if I were a teacher, get to know each and every student's very heart. In the Dojo I'm sure some people are good people, and outside they may not be so much.

Its very compelx... As much as who you can trust your life with... There, thats what it is.

If I trust my life in another persons hands, then I think if I knew those kind of techniques and I was teaching. I'd guide them on it.
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#204264 - 11/29/05 03:20 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
Ed_Morris Offline
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so...whats the secret to breaking a neck? actually, I don't think I'd be able to break someones neck. even if I got them into position, I just wouldn't have the heart. I'd settle for them losing conscienceness and then run to the nearest police station.
So all of those hours, days, weeks, months and years chasing down the secrets of breaking necks and then practicing and perfecting them would have been just wasted knowledge for me

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#204265 - 11/29/05 03:24 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Quote:

so...whats the secret to breaking a neck? actually, I don't think I'd be able to break someones neck. even if I got them into position, I just wouldn't have the heart. I'd settle for them losing conscienceness and then run to the nearest police station.



The secret to breaking a neck is a secret It depends on the technique, there are multiple ways obviously. It was an example although there are techniques in the Heian's that I was shown were breaks of some sort.


I don't think I could either, unless the situation deemed it was the only thing I could do to keep my son from being killed. If I seriously thought, that no matter what I were to do, no matter what actions I were to take my son were to still be in danger. I think I would do it... I can't say for sure because I've never been in the situation.. I don't ever want to be in that situation.
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#204266 - 11/29/05 05:31 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: ButterflyPalm]
CVV Offline
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Quote:


Sometimes 'secrets' are just 'delayed transmissions'

I can see the reluctance of some masters (past and present) being reluctant to just freely (not in the monetary sense) give away knowledge which they themselves had a hard time getting.

Rightly or wrongly was and always will be more of an individual moral issue and the issue of 'what if the knowledge goes to the grave with you?' didn't figure too largely.




I like this. It gives a reason to why not all is transmitted. There is also another reason. A lot of research was destroyed and many master killed during the battle of Okinawa in WWII. So what was left was mostly oral tradition and less in depth knowledge.
The same also happened earlier at the turn of the 19ht century as Okinawa no longer was connected politically to China and with the political turmoil at that time when many Chinese masters left Fuzhou area. There were lesser sources of information to cross reference.
Knowledge got lost and vague reference made it secret.

Also the accomplishement of masters of the past always surpasses the accomplishment of the current practitioners. (at least so its seeems).

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#204267 - 11/29/05 10:53 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: NEAS]
steelwater Offline
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Registered: 05/20/05
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Neas;s statement.
You make as much sense as you always do what are you talking about?
Ok.
Perhaps you might like to give another use for soto -uke apart from being taught as a block?
And the money in this country is pound notes pal .





phoenixflame knows exactly what he's talking about. You don't. Besides, he already told you what the "other use" is. A strike. See first three techniques in Heian Nidan.

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#204268 - 11/30/05 12:20 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: steelwater]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Quote:

phoenixflame knows exactly what he's talking about. You don't. Besides, he already told you what the "other use" is. A strike. See first three techniques in Heian Nidan.




I almost feel like framing this...

The Heians are CHALK full of AMAZING Bunkai. Some basic, some intermediate and some ridiculously advanced. They are by far some of my favorites to teach ... One of the Kata I'm learning in Shotokan is Gojyo-shi-ho Sho. I think its ingraining itself into my brain as one of my favorites.

I hope there are some Delayed Transmission that I am lucky enough to gain from a Shotokan/Funakoshi viewpoint on the Kata... Mmm... Bunkai...

*grins*
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#204269 - 11/30/05 02:23 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
Mark Hill Offline
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Quote:

Quote:

phoenixflame knows exactly what he's talking about. You don't. Besides, he already told you what the "other use" is. A strike. See first three techniques in Heian Nidan.




I almost feel like framing this...

The Heians are CHALK full of AMAZING Bunkai. Some basic, some intermediate and some ridiculously advanced. They are by far some of my favorites to teach ... One of the Kata I'm learning in Shotokan is Gojyo-shi-ho Sho. I think its ingraining itself into my brain as one of my favorites.

I hope there are some Delayed Transmission that I am lucky enough to gain from a Shotokan/Funakoshi viewpoint on the Kata... Mmm... Bunkai...

*grins*




Con-freaking-cur!
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#204270 - 12/01/05 08:40 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Mark Hill]
Victor Smith Offline
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Shhhhh,

There are no secrets. Repeat please, "There are no Secrets!"

And if there were why would any of us share them, if we did then they wouldn't be secrets.....
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#204271 - 12/01/05 09:04 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Victor Smith]
Ed_Morris Offline
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{blank stare and nodding while tapping heels together} "There are no secrets....theres no place like hombu....there are no secrets....theres no place like hombu..."

[edit- that humor may have been a bit obscure - If someone believes something hard enough, in their mind, it will be true. If someone believes there are no secrets, they won't be looking for them nor will they call them secrets even if they do come across some.
If someone believes there are secrets, they will surely find some.
Perception is reality in this case. - can't argue it - nobody and everybody is wrong...but we can joke about it ]

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#204272 - 12/01/05 10:06 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
Neko456 Offline
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That Victor he such a slight dog, element of surprise lower there guards and Zapp. I like the way you think. Yeah there are no secrets in kata, even though they catelouge most Masters favorite techniques. Its just a pretty dance that we do to occupy time and space.

Just like theres no secret to em2 = mxv!!!
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#204273 - 12/01/05 02:10 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Neko456]
Ed_Morris Offline
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you forgot the distinction I made before about the difference between 'secrets' and 'privaledged knowledge'. I'm only trying to remove the mysticism and the mis-understanding that follows associated with the notion of 'secrets'.
get it?

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#204274 - 12/01/05 02:49 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
Neko456 Offline
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I got it, you R taking it to a higher plane, you can't understand Physic until you know how to multiple/divide/ subtract& add after the basic and algerbra/Trig... then you can understand the secrets of Physic/Kata.

I got it Ed but you an Enstine maybe too upper level for some to follow, I guess that falls under the privelege info act too, doesn't it. Blood, Sweat and Tears no way around it, to get it or see it. Is that close to what you're saying (I'm reaching for my oxygen mask).
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#204275 - 12/01/05 08:43 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Neko456]
Sensei Paul Hart Offline
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No one believes in Okuden or even kamiwaza? Just curious who trains people in this manner?
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#204276 - 12/01/05 09:18 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Neko456]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Neko: nice. I always get a kick out of people trying to insult people's intelligence while giving a dazzeling display of horrible grammer and 6th grade spelling errors.

I'm not claiming any privaledged knowledge. Try and paint me as an elitest, and you'll just make yourself look like you have an inferiority complex... sorry I'm not biting.

back to topic:
Lets agree on something that is truely a secret as it relates to kata (something no one could possible know with 100% certainty).
How about knowing what the masters of 100 years ago DIDN'T know? thats a bona-fide secret isn't it? I have never read anywhere of any master explaining what he didn't know about kata....except maybe mentioning that they weren't 100% sure of a particular kata's origin.

Have you ever read of a past sensei saying: "I'm not sure about the application of that particular technique." Probably not, because if they truely didnt know, they figured something out on their own and made it work...problem solved...and a 'secret' gained.

thats all we are really talking about here...they are referred to as 'secret applications' but they are the hard work of a previous master that was either passed on by teaching it or figured out/changed/modified/improved by his student...

Thats the best case...now what if the person creating the secret got it wrong but still passed it along as a secret? How willing would you be to still call it a secret?

In that sense, the secret is in knowing what is worth keeping and passing to the next generation. When you pick and choose who to teach this to it ceases to be a secret and becomes 'privaledged information'.

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#204277 - 12/01/05 09:34 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Sensei Paul Hart]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
Quote:

No one believes in Okuden or even kamiwaza? Just curious who trains people in this manner?



Yes! perfect. those are the differences I'm talking about.
Okuden is the privaledged teachings.
Kamiwaza is the fruitless holy grail search that leads to obsession. lit: 'divine technique'

When people think of secrets, it sometimes sounds like they are talking about both Okuden and Kamiwaza...I was trying to separate the two out.

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#204278 - 12/02/05 10:09 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
Neko456 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 3260
Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA
Mr. Morris its always nice to know when you are being insulted, I was not insulting you nor was I under the impression that this was a grammar competition. I thought it was casual communication on the subject of secrets in Kata.

Now how I got you wrong is that you don't think there are any and I took it that we were in agreement that in Kata/Bunkias every variation or interpetation can open a new way of thinking or moving. No matter how small or slight a new way of moving or delievery can be a secret technique if its new to you. Now you thought I was being snide with the comparison of basic math progress to the realitivy formula and basic concept of kata to advance, I wasn't.

We got off on the wrong track thinking in an effort to pat you on the back, you thought I had aimed lower. I didn't I misunderstood your intention until I read your comment on the Old Masters not knowing the full meaning of somethings.

You obviously are pretty deep but you don't seem to understand there should be no apology for not knowing everything. A Master is a title given alot of times they don't want this title because of the great expectation that they should know everything. I learn something new while training in almost every training session I attend, wheather its my foundation art or a new art no matter how small. In this way I am a perpetual student, I admitt I never will know everything about everything. Once I've done that, then like you I can judge or say what other people see and learn is not true to them.

We only disagree in our findings, but in my opinon thats ok because its our right to do that. We can disagree and not be in conflict. There still no insult invovled, we just see the subject matter differently.

For future reference I personally think its useless to fight with words or insults over difference of opinions over the internet or in person. I won't waste my time with it, its an innate right.

Paul Hart thats a deep concept I'd bet few train with that in mind here and now. Divine techniques or the other Special privaledged teachings. In the US and back then too, more money/status makes you a privalege student.

I am at work amusing myself with these responce I don't have time to grammar or spell check.


Edited by Neko456 (12/02/05 10:30 AM)
_________________________
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#204279 - 12/02/05 10:37 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Neko456]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
I think you are just covering your butt. (I also added a little ' ' wink in there so I could always just say I was only kidding.) and I was, like you, only kidding too

"...there should be no apology for not knowing everything."
I didn't know that...but I don't need to appologize for it, do I?

lets get back on topic...before we start to sound married.
.
.
Spare change anyone? Help out a brother with a secret lost thread?

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#204280 - 12/02/05 10:52 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
Sensei Paul Hart Offline
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Registered: 12/05/03
Posts: 279
Loc: Lehigh Acres, Florida
There is an explanation behind Kamiwaza. I fully believe, no, I know Okuden exists. There are things which are not taught and others that are. Can you figure some of them out yourself? sure, it's possible. But the Okuden in a martial art is there to give you a short cut to developing the skills the Masters had. Sometimes they may not be the skills themselves but in what Kokoro you do them with. The Kamiwaza on the other hand are not any one technique, it is all techniques. Morihei Ueshiba found his way to this level of practice. To understand the concept we must understand the term. Kami, which means spiritual, is a way of saying that the person has went beyond the physical while he does his techniques. All techniques can be performed this way. Most of us may reach a level where we can perform one or two. The guy who has the incredible punch, or Hee Il Cho's spinning back kick. Some can train so hard and reach that were all techniques are at a level above physical. I am never going to get there by typeing so I will go train now.
_________________________
Paul Hart http://allshorin.org

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#204281 - 12/02/05 11:11 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
Neko456 Offline
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Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 3260
Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA
Ed its your innate right to think as you like. Notice I didn't put a wink in the last responce I was serious. I don't need to cover anything like you I have innate rights also.

Secrets in Kata through all my 30 years of training no matter what art I've studied most effective techniques are in the short set of forms/Kata that I've learned in the various systems. The secret is in the bunkia (our school term) or explaination (and how deep is the secret) of these application (what are we actually doing here). Sometimes its explain that its a punch/technique, other time its a punch to certain location, then to what angle, and then at a prescribed time and to what degree of injury. And maybe how to reverse the injury or heal, It becomes subject matter to study. Some systems (like Kali) actual say these are the fighting applications with no modification, I disagree here fighting is not a constant that can be pre determined. I'm not asking for any to agree, again I'm inacting my innate right. If thats ok with you Ed.

It can be just traditional dance or it can be a verison of an application, deep application or basic. This is where the secret are, how deep.


Edited by Neko456 (12/02/05 11:18 AM)
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#204282 - 12/02/05 11:42 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Sensei Paul Hart]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
I know what the problem is...I don't know any secrets so I can't possibly understand the conversation. still, I try...

Okuden I believe is absolutely true, real, happening, transmitted, preserved and sometimes referred to as secrets but I think is more accurate to call privaledged information.

kamiwaza, I don't believe can be taught. it's an experience that may or may not happen in martial art careers.

Let me ask this...what do you think people are selling to the public when they blatently advertise that they teach 'secret techniques of the lost ancient arts'?

see the baggage with all those terms? I was just trying to separating out the baggage. silly me.

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#204283 - 12/02/05 12:32 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
Neko456 Offline
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Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 3260
Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA
Ed - Okuden I believe is absolutely true, real, happening, transmitted, preserved and sometimes referred to as secrets but I think is more accurate to call privaledged information.

I've seen several examples of this some of my Instructors (not that all gave me privalege info) and people from out of state that bring in training thats new, unheard of or not understood and sometimes not wanted, like family systems & Chi/merdian training.

Ed - kamiwaza, I don't believe can be taught. it's an experience that may or may not happen in martial art careers.

I agree it not taught but personally developed. But I think its experience more times then you think. Most people think this of their Instructors, is it true, big ? There are still some amazing technicains out here, maybe not at the level of Hee Lll Cho's tight heavy bag splitting JSBK but close. I personally don't like the term divine/image of supernatutal, mastering of a ... is my perference.

Ed - Let me ask this...what do you think people are selling to the public when they blatently advertise that they teach 'secret techniques of the lost ancient arts'?

Some people actually believe in their cause, and do teach efefctive unfamilar arts Filipino/Silat/Kuntoa/African. Or as they call them combat arts. Is it sell pitch, maybe. But if its new concepts and effective, why not learn it if it can enhance what you are doing. Some people are just hype 30 minute listening or watching their techniques a trained person can deter that.
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DBAckerson

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#204284 - 12/02/05 07:38 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Sensei Paul Hart]
eyrie Offline
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Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
Paul,

I'm not convinced that the okuden are "short-cuts" as such. To me, the okuden is the core, the very heart of the system. Without this "core understanding", one is simply mimicking the external, physical forms.

Ueshiba's okuden is widely available, in the form of "doka" (or songs of the way), thanks largely in part to translations made by many senior level practitioners. So there is nothing secret, nor privileged in that sense. However, it is still up to the individual to figure out what the old man meant.

To do that, one must look below the surface (omote/ura), as it were, for the fundamental principles, to uncover the core understanding, and thus "exit from form".

I think bunkai is one way of studying the (omote) form at a deeper level (ura), but to me, it remains firmly in the trap of physical "form".

When you can let go of the physical "form" and approach the spiritual, kamiwaza happens naturally, of its own accord. The shapes of the external forms may look like something familiar, but it is almost never what you anticipate it to be. Hence it would appear as if techniques were inspired by the "divine".

A simplified way of describing this would be to use the Consciousness Competence Learning Model.

Stage 1 - Unconscious Incompetence
Stage 2 - Conscious Incompetence
Stage 3 - Conscious Competence
Stage 4 - Unconscious Competence

I guess Stage 4 and beyond is where it's at???

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#204285 - 12/02/05 07:55 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
I'll wait for Sensei Paul Hart to respond, before I throw in my two cents because ... Well.. The post above me was directed to him so.. .Yeah. I look forward to a good discussion! Woo!
_________________________
While everything changes, nothing is truly lost.

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#204286 - 12/02/05 09:58 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
eyrie, I'm at stage 2. I'm still becomming aware of what I don't know.

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#204287 - 12/02/05 11:10 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
ButterflyPalm Offline
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Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
Quote:


Stage 1 - Unconscious Incompetence
Stage 2 - Conscious Incompetence
Stage 3 - Conscious Competence
Stage 4 - Unconscious Competence




Without any self-conscious pretence of enforced humility, I am at Stage 1.

I don't know what I don't know.
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#204288 - 12/03/05 12:58 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: ButterflyPalm]
eyrie Offline
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Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
Even though these are listed as stages, it's more like a continuum of development.

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#204289 - 12/03/05 07:26 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
shoshinkan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2662
Loc: UK


Stage 1 - Unconscious Incompetence
Stage 2 - Conscious Incompetence
Stage 3 - Conscious Competence
Stage 4 - Unconscious Competence

sounds not disimilair to the Shu Ha Ri concept?
_________________________
Jim Neeter

www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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#204290 - 12/03/05 11:43 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
Sensei Paul Hart Offline
Banned Member

Registered: 12/05/03
Posts: 279
Loc: Lehigh Acres, Florida
You seem to have a good grasp on the fundamentals and I enjoyed your insite. I think maybe you misunderstood my "short cut" comment.

I lived for a while in Salem, Mo. We use to go to this place called the Johnson Shut-ins. It was made up of limestone holes some very deep, others not so deep. Pictures can be seen HERE. It is a great place to explore, work out and have fun. The best place to swim is off the big rocks where you can jump about 50 or 60 foot into the pool below. Do you know this place? It is right up from the stairs which you must climb. My point is, unless I am there to show you, you may wonder around for hours looking. When you find the "place" I speak of, it may or may not be the place I was refering to. My knowledge of the Shut-ins would give you a short cut to the best water hole.

Another way to put it is a Zen saying, "If you would like to know the way up the mountain, ask the one who travels it every day."

This is the short cut that I was talking of.
_________________________
Paul Hart http://allshorin.org

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#204291 - 12/03/05 06:27 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Sensei Paul Hart]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
I see your point.

However, if I were to ask another guide where the best water hole was, would they prescribe exactly the same route? Would it even be the same water hole?

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#204292 - 12/03/05 07:19 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
Sensei Paul Hart Offline
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Registered: 12/05/03
Posts: 279
Loc: Lehigh Acres, Florida
But thats the great thing, we can all drink whatever we want. I never force a drink to anyone, only light the way so they can drink if they want.

You can lead a horse to water, but you cant teach it to think.
_________________________
Paul Hart http://allshorin.org

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#204293 - 12/03/05 10:47 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
phoenixsflame Offline
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Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
Quote:

I see your point.

However, if I were to ask another guide where the best water hole was, would they prescribe exactly the same route? Would it even be the same water hole?





I think the point isn't the water hole itself, but the water they bring. The metaphoric sense of course, simply the fact that these "Short Cuts" aren't this negative connotation that has been attributed to them.

A man is wandering through the desert, and stumbles upon another mounted rider. He points the man in the direction of the Oasis..

This is the short-cut I think Sensei Paul Hart refers to, at least that it what it strikes in my mind.
_________________________
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#204294 - 12/04/05 06:51 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
eyrie Offline
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Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
I'm not disputing that. I am merely provoking further discussion on the "path" and "short cuts".

The destination of the water hole and water itself is not in question, but the journey. It's whether okuden represents the "quickest" route - i.e. a "short-cut" or something more/else?

If you catch my drift...

Sorry, I know I'm being semantically pedantic, but it's an important distinction.

Now, when Paul says "lighting the way", i.e. okuden is the light that illuminates the path, it becomes clearer. (Pun intended).

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#204295 - 12/09/05 03:48 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
RonShively1022 Offline
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Registered: 12/09/05
Posts: 47
Loc: South Carolina
CVV: I've been reading some of your posts, and yes, the joint locks and throws are not actually "secret", just hidden in plain sight. The actual point(s) where you can convert from striking to grappling exists at the area of physical contact - such as blocking. Blocks are one of the main methods by which you can create a joint lock or throw.

For example, an outside block on the inside of an opponent's arm is a set-up for a specified number of possible grappling movements. Just as a cross-body inside block with your opposite arm/hand to the inside of your opponent's arm is a set-up for other types of joint locks and throws.

Keep in mind that depending on whether you are on the outside or inside of your opponent's striking arm, and which arm/hand you use to make initial contact will determine the type of joint lock or throw that you can apply.

Remember, there are a limited number of possible grappling applications that can exist within a kata/form. Each block can flow into only a limited number of joint locks or throws. The main reason for this is due to human anatomy and physiology. An arm (both yours and his-your attacker)can only twist and/or bend in only certain directions.

Two good references on grappling are "Jiu-Jitsu Complete" by Kiyose Nakae, and "Aikido and the Dynamic Sphere" by Westbrook and Ratti.

Finding the Himitsu Kenpo or secret technique within a kata or movement is more art than science. Your level of application will depend upon your level of understanding.

I Hope This Helps,

Ron Shively

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#204296 - 01/23/06 10:22 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
Ronin1966 Offline
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Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello CVV:

Any chance you could explain those many terms in ENGLISH, some (many?) may not understand your terms/concepts if you stick only to the Japanese words

Merely a thought (and a strange-amusing variation of the ~secret idea~),

J

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#204297 - 01/23/06 03:34 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
CVV Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/06/04
Posts: 605
Loc: Belgium
Quote:

Hello CVV:

Any chance you could explain those many terms in ENGLISH, some (many?) may not understand your terms/concepts if you stick only to the Japanese words

Merely a thought (and a strange-amusing variation of the ~secret idea~),

J




Sorry Ronin1966,
I am not familiar with the terms in English, although I've learned a few since coming to FA. We do not use English where I live (mother tongue Dutch, second language French and German). In training we use Japanese terms.
But I will try to describe more the technique in future.

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#204298 - 01/24/06 09:52 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
Ronin1966 Offline
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Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3113
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Eyrie:

<<When you can let go of the physical "form" and approach the spiritual, kamiwaza happens naturally, of its own accord.

Apologies, my Japanese has its limits. Kamiwaza implying/meaning specifically???

Please articulate the spirituality of kata!? Is the physical expression seperate from this spiritual of which you speak? Are your spiritual technique/s taught in the identical manner of the basic physical techniques, and to the identical depth of them? I could write concisely the physical aspects of any technique, can/is this done with the spiritual of which you seemed to be speaking?

When/if time permits,
J

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#204299 - 01/24/06 06:46 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
eyrie Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 12/28/04
Posts: 3106
Loc: QLD, Australia
kami = divine
waza = techniques

>Is the physical expression seperate from this spiritual of which you speak?

Nope. It's when physical form takes on a spiritual dimension.

>Are your spiritual technique/s taught in the identical manner of the basic physical techniques, and to the identical depth of them?

The spiritual dimension manisfests from within. It cannot be taught - only experienced.

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#204300 - 01/29/06 10:25 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
kakushiite Offline
Member

Registered: 02/06/03
Posts: 266
Loc: Ithaca, NY, USA
It is refreshing to read a thread that touches on the experiential nature of true mastery of kata movements. A couple of contributors discussed how certain things cannot be taught, only experienced. This may well be the case with attempts at developing an understanding of the applications buried deeply within kata.

Some of you pointed out the training paradigm practiced 100 years ago: three years to learn a kata. It is my understanding that it was also expected that it took ten years to master one. Let's not forget also that it was a common expectation then for students to train two to three hours every day, (Itosu's Third Lesson of Tote) in an environment where kata practice was the core component.

There is a quote on this thread regarding Miyagi teaching few kata. Recent research shows that was probably also how his teacher Higaonna taught as well. And both Motobu and Funakoshi are recorded as having described the norm of masters studying only a few kata.

When we think of the proficiency gained by the masters of the time, it is helpful to remember that with few kata and many hours of training, their path to introspection was fundamentally different from today, where the model has shifted to fewer training hours, a kumite orientation within many karate systems, and quite often, many more kata. With this change in approach to training, many students may face an insurmountable obstacle in their quest to achieve the intensity of focus that was the norm 100 years ago.

I think many here concur that through the intense study of something, over many years, there is a natural discovery of concepts within the movements.

Following, I have two excerpts that may help us to better understand this concept of intense repetition and focus. The first comes from Iha sensei regarding his teacher, Shinpan Shiroma, who had trained under both Itosu and Higaonna.

Quote:


Shinpan Shiroma went to Japan on his summer school teaching break. While there he wished to train in the naginata. He met a teacher and explained what he wanted to learn. She showed him how to do the nuki (spear thrust) and told him to practice this technique 2 to 3 hours a day. Every day when he came to the teacher’s dojo, she told him to practice the nuki technique, then she left. He practiced like this for his entire vacation. When it was time to return home, he asked his teacher how long it would take for the average student to learn the nuki and be able to go on to the next technique. She replied, “Oh usually three years.”





In his Twenty Guiding Principles of Karate, Funakoshi quotes the legendary sword master Miyamoto Musashi’s in the following excerpt from The Book of Five Rings.

Quote:

I had my first match long ago at the youthful age of thirteen….At twenty I went up to the capital, and though I met the top martial artists in the realm and fought numerous matches, I never failed to win. After that I traveled from place to place, province to province, seeking out martial artists from various schools, and though I fought in as many as sixty duels, not once did I lose, and in that manner passed from the age of thirteen to the age of twenty-nine.
.
After reaching the age of thirty I thought back and saw that I won not because I was a superior martial artist. Perhaps it was because of some natural talent in this pursuit or because I did not deviate from the natural principles. Or it may have been due to inadequacies in the martial arts of other schools.
.
From that time I practiced fervently morning and night, seeking to grasp the principles of the Way more deeply, and around the age of fifty I came to a natural realization of the Way of Martial Arts.





Funakoshi then goes on to describe another swordsman who earned the nickname "Iron Demon".

Quote:

The founder of the Muto-ryu sword style, Yamaoka Tesshe, was forty-five when he said, “I have just now attained a wonderous understanding,” expressing his breakthrough to enlightenment. That was the thirty-seventh year of his training, and his twenty-third year as a disciple of the famous swordsman Asari Matashichiro. Only after continuing his practice for decades with a courageous and intrepid spirit that earned him the nickname of “Iron Demon,” and only after pressing toward his goal with a seriousness of purpose that penetrated his very core, was he able to grasp the true principles of the Way for the first time.





These writings have helped me to understand that only through intense study can we begin to look more deeply within a kata to understand the underlying concepts of the fighting principles embedded within.

I have enjoyed contributors variety of terms used above to describe this notion of "secret" movements. I find the terms "unexplored" and "hidden in plain site" helpful in understanding the enigma (puzzle) of kata application.

I too view the concept of "secret" as incomplete and somewhat misleading. To me a kata's secret is something I don't know and which would be difficult to get to know. But this does not necessarily imply that I expect someone else to know it or teach me, which is often an implication of the term "secret."

Rather, I like to use following terms to describe how a kata's movements hide underlying meaning. I see fighting applications as:

  • obscured.
  • masked.
  • camouflaged.

    Another way I like to think about kata application is that although we would like to believe the kata is translucent (clear), often, at first, the more we look at it, the more opaque (cloudy) it becomes. Only with intense study, and extensive repetition can we hope to see through the movements, to the concepts buried within.

    -Kakushite

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    #204301 - 01/29/06 11:35 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: kakushiite]
    eyrie Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 12/28/04
    Posts: 3106
    Loc: QLD, Australia
    Good post!

    Perhaps it's not so much "mastery", as the idea of having "finese"? Mastering something is one thing. But being to apply it with sophistication and finese is quite another.

    If we look at individual hand/foot/body movements as the ABC's (i.e. alphabet), kata as words and phrases, and our ability to fight as complete sentences, paragraphs, and whole stories, it becomes apparent that using a string of alphabets to make up a word may not necessarily make sense. And a bunch of words don't necessarily make a proper sentence, at least one which you or I might understand. A whole bunch of sentences may form a paragraph, but what would it be comprehensible?

    From re-reading the preceding paragraph, I can see that there are opportunities to rewrite it such that the central idea could be elucidated with much more finese. I could rewrite the sentences so the paragraph becomes more coherent. I could re-phrase it and choose different words to better explain what I mean. I could use more flowery, bombastic words. Or I could keep it really simple, so a 6th grader could understand, without altering the gist of the message.

    Kata is like how we learn to speak and write; stringing together short sentences, and succinct phrases. Some want to skip the alphabet and jump straight to writing prose, believing that the only way to write well is to write more. In many cases, it's cutting back on what is written, keeping it simple, yet with a level of sophistication that belies its simplicity.

    Fighting is like debating with words. The more the merrier? Or the more succinct? I tend to feel, the use of choice words and succinct remarks that are delivered with impact is better at driving the message home. Just listen to how our politicians speak; they (or their speech writers, and image consultants) are masters of communication strategy.

    That, is true mastery of language. It is how we attain true mastery of anything.

    Unfortunately, I am not there yet. As you can see, I waffle too much.

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    #204302 - 01/30/06 06:38 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: eyrie]
    kakushiite Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/06/03
    Posts: 266
    Loc: Ithaca, NY, USA
    Eyrie,

    Good thoughts.

    In engineering disciplines there is the concept of an elegant design. It is typically minimalist. It does much with little. In the realm of computer programming for example, some can write in 10 compact lines of code what it would take a beginner coder hundreds of lines to replicate.

    In any given kata are many movements. Combinations of these movements can be brought together into elegant solutions, where the defender accomplishes much with little.

    I think this and finesse are the same or similar concepts. The techniques are modified/simplified in ways where much can be accomplished with little.

    -Kakushite

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    #204303 - 01/30/06 07:38 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
    Ronin1966 Offline
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 04/26/02
    Posts: 3113
    Loc: East Coast, United States
    Hello CVV:

    Is there a meaningful difference between so called secret & merely hidden IYV?

    J

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    #204304 - 01/30/06 05:27 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
    CVV Offline
    Enthusiast

    Registered: 08/06/04
    Posts: 605
    Loc: Belgium
    Quote:

    Hello CVV:

    Is there a meaningful difference between so called secret & merely hidden IYV?

    J




    Yes, the secrets do not limit themselves to a particular sequence in kata. Hidden techniques can be explored in the kata, the secrets can be applied.
    Although I consider karate primerely a striking art, I distinguish 6 main fighting principles :
    - joint locks
    - dislocations and bone breaking
    - attacks on the respatory system
    - attacks on blood vessels
    - attacking chi-point/nerve points
    - throws

    Kata is a way to train the body and a way to explore the hidden moves by applying the principles of fighting.
    These principles imply good knowledge of the human body, knowledge of the technique used and the consequence of that application and knowledge of the kata.
    You need to be thaught and you need to train this. I think a lot of the knowledge of the fighting principles is not openly thaught.

    The 48 self-defense diagrams of the Bubishi show fighting principles that can be applied in the sequences of multiple kata. They could be considered secrets of fighting.
    Without knowledge of the fighting principles, kata just remains an exercise to condition the body.

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    #204305 - 01/30/06 06:15 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
    kakushiite Offline
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    Registered: 02/06/03
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    A number of contributors here have touched upon some common sense concepts regarding the historical practice of kata. There has been some agreement that these forms were designed to transmit certain core information (body mechanics, e.g.). Yet the same design also ingeniously camouflaged key fighting concepts that were buried deep within the movements. The end result has been that only through focused long-term study could a full understanding of the underlying capabilities be achieved.

    In addition to this “long-term study approach” to learning application, also discussed on this thread is the concept of privileged transmittal. In this practice, before revealing valuable insights, a master waits until his student has demonstrated decade’s worth of diligence. Only then does the master choose to entrust to the student, ideas that he has learned himself, or has been shown by his own master after decades of his own tireless effort.

    CVV said:
    Quote:

    These principles imply good knowledge of the human body, knowledge of the technique used and the consequence of that application and knowledge of the kata.
    You need to be thaught and you need to train this. I think a lot of the knowledge of the fighting principles is not openly thaught.





    I agree completely. What we shouldn’t overlook is that the first practice described above, the inward looking self-discovery model, involves more than just the knowledge of the movements of a kata. It also requires a sound understanding of the essential building blocks of effective self-defense applications: blocking, kicking, striking, trapping, locking, choking, and perhaps most important, body movement (tai sabaki and ashi sabaki).

    As much of modern karate has evolved, we often find an almost exclusive focus on blocking, kicking and striking. In addition, the angular self-defense movements of tai sabaki and ashi sabaki (stepping and twisting off the line of attack), have been replaced with the linear forward and back movements common to jiyu kumite. Today it is not uncommon in many systems for students to train for years completely unaware of either basic grappling concepts or the tai/ashi sabaki principles of body movement. Fortunately, an increasing number of karate traditionalists have come to recognize these two concepts are as fundamental to good fighting applications as are blocks, kicks and strikes.

    In Okinawa 100 years ago, it was probably relatively rare for students to lack an understanding of basic grappling movements, since the practice of ti was part and parcel of Okinawa’s culture. Many sources state that back then common grappling concepts (ti) were a basic component of karate training. But what is often overlooked is that it was also very common for new students to develop a foundation of grappling skill prior to beginning their formal training. This contrasts significantly with our Western culture, where this is far less common. Rather, the norm is that students in many dojos worldwide need extensive training, not only in blocking and striking, but in basic grappling movements as well.

    A review of some historical sources on this topic can be helpful. An interview with Hohan Soken, (on this FightingArts site - http://www.fightingarts.com/reading/article.php?id=427) states the following:

    Quote:



    As a youngster on Okinawa (Soken), grappling was taken very seriously and it was not uncommon for individuals to suffer broken arms and legs as a result of taking part in this light form of entertainment. (Soken-sensei used the terms "te-kumi" or "gyaku-te" as identifying this old Okinawan art form).
    .
    “Grappling is an old Okinawan custom that is commonly practiced in all villages. In America, the children played at "cowboys and indians." In Okinawa we played by grappling with each other. We would have contests for grapplers in every village and one village would pit their best grapplers against all comers. It was very exciting.”
    .
    ”Some people see the grappling and call it Okinawan jujutsu but this is not right. It is the old method called "ti" (often written as ‘te.” When pronounced in the old dialect of Okinawa it sounds like the word "tea"). Ti practice was very common during the Meiji / Taisho era (turn of the century) but with the Japanese influences, these methods have almost disappeared.”





    From these words of Soken, and from other sources (such as the chapter on Tegumi in Nagamine’s text “Tales of Okinawa’s Great Master”), we learn that grappling techniques were commonly practiced by children long before they ever began formal karate training. In contrast, when a typical westerner begins martial arts training, this skill will be rarely found.

    As a result, if basic locking/trapping/choking concepts are not taught in the dojo, and students do not seek to learn these skills elsewhere, then they will likely never possess the knowledge needed for a robust understanding of a kata’s true fighting potential.

    Let’s take a basic grappling movement, the arm bar. In many karate systems today, an extensive practice of the arm bar is rarely part of the curriculum. In some cases, the teacher may have never learned the technique. In other cases, although the teacher may have knowledge of the movement, he has decided he lacks sufficient time to ensure his students gain skill in this movement. He may be far more focused on developing his students jiyu kumite skills and recognizes that jiyu kumite is not the proper forum to practice this skill, so he decides it doesn’t fit within his curriculum. This is just one of any number of reasons why such grappling techniques are no longer practiced in so many dojos. Soken, above, alludes to the role of Japanese influences regarding the declining practice of ti. As karate evolved throughout much of the 20th century, especially within the Japanese systems, the grappling aspects were de-emphasized and frequently eliminated altogether.

    To summarize the contrast of how karate has been practiced in our respective cultures, we find that in Okinawa, students frequently began their karate training after already achieving skill in ti. Moreover, as Soken states above, once under a master’s tutelage, they would continue training in ti, well on the path of mastery of this aspect of their art.

    Students also trained with an intense focus on kata, spending 3 years on a single form, and frequently practicing only a few throughout their lives.

    It is my opinion that these twin pillars of training, intense kata training coupled with the practice of ti, gave karateka of the time the ability to look deeply with the kata for ways apply their skills.

    How do we in the West compare? Today students rarely begin training with effective grappling skills. In addition, in many karate systems, particularly those with Japanese roots, there is little emphasis on developing mastery of grappling movements. Moreover, although students today often train far fewer hours than was the norm in Okinawa, karate systems have incorporated the bewildering practice of 10, 20, 30 or even 50 kata. Yet even with all that kata, it is not uncommon for students to train extensively in jiyu-kumite, a practice foreign to Okinawans 100 years ago.

    The Hohan Soken article has additional helpful insights regarding the subject of this thread:

    Quote:



    “There are many secrets in karate that people will never know and will never understand. These ideas are really not secret if you train in Okinawa under a good teacher. You will see the teacher use these so-called secret techniques over and over again until they will become common knowledge to you. Others will look at it and marvel that it is an advanced or secret technique to them. That is because they do not have good teachers or their teachers have not researched their respective styles.”






    I believe we should take heed from Soken’s words. In many cases, one man’s secrets are simply another man’s common knowledge. Some systems claim that basic grappling movements are somehow advanced or secret. However, one can begin training in a wide variety of systems (western wrestling, jujutsu, aikido, hapkido, aikijutsu, BJJ, judo, kenpo, traditional Philippine, Thai, or Indonesian arts, and all sorts of Chinese systems) and learn a broad variety of grappling concepts as a beginner. What might be “secret” or “advanced” in a karate school is often basic movement found in common grappling systems.

    Some schools may consider pressure (vital) point strikes to be advanced or secret. In much of karate practiced around the world, there is little if any focus on these techniques. They are just not part of the curriculum.

    However, if you are fortunate enough to train with Oyata or one of his student’s, you will quickly learn and practice a variety of these striking techniques, along with a heavy focus on trapping and locking. Many of these concepts require no advanced rank to be learned. Oyata began learning these ideas as a teenager in Okinawa and as he passes many on to beginner and intermediate students. This is not to say that Oyata doesn’t reserve his more devastating concepts to be passed down as privileged information only to those found deserving.

    Interestingly, I have been told that Oyata, as with many “old school” masters, typically doesn’t spend a great deal of time teaching kata applications. His students practice the fundamentals of Ryu Kyu Kempo and its offshoots. Blocking, kicking, striking and grappling movements. Oyata teaches that it is often up to the students themselves to find a place for these concepts within the kata.

    One student once described a common approach Oyata takes towards kata application. If a student asks “Sensei, what does this kata movement mean?”, he will often respond: “What do you think?” This parallels the “teach a man to fish” model of learning. It is often better to learn by doing than by passively receiving.

    One last quote from the Soken article gives us yet another perspective we sometimes overlook regarding why the masters chose to mask the true fighting nature of the kata. 100 years ago, fighting carried much greater risk. Sometimes we may take for granted today our modern healthcare systems and technology, our insurance companies and government and privately funded programs that help the indigent, sick and wounded. Throughout history however, life was very different, as Soken describes below:

    Quote:

    Erica Estrada “Fighting must have been very different at the beginning of the century.”
    .

    Soken Sensei: Yes, you don't know these old days. In a fight... if you would lose, the loss would be suffered by your family. They could die. You would work hard to support the family working all day. If you were injured or killed while fighting, then your family would starve... maybe even die. Okinawa life was very hard.





    When the risks of injury or death were so much higher, it paid to be very cautious about who you taught your very best fighting concepts to. Across hundreds of years, as fighting systems were designed and modified, there evolved an approach to sharing concepts that has resulted in what today we call kata. Fighting applications were obscured within common movements so that it was a challenging task to discern the underlying principles.

    And to date, these camouflaging mechanisms have remained remarkably effective. It still takes many years of diligent practice to learn to see beyond the ruses, ploys and distractions that the masters melded into kata to mask their true meaning.

    What has changed is that in today’s environment, we often find that traditional karate systems aren’t organized to provide all of the key basics (grappling as well as striking) for us to complete the journey on our own. To be effective in doing so, we often have to reach outside of traditional karate, and train in the grappling arts to gain the foundation required for a full vision of the potential applications found within. And in the process, we probably have to overcome the pressure to learn many kata, and focus on just a few, or better yet, for three years or so, just one.

    -Kakushite

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    #204306 - 01/30/06 09:03 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: kakushiite]
    medulanet Offline
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    Not all kata are "masking" secret techniques. In a classical okinawan karate system if you know what you are looking at it is clear. In okinawan dance there are some masked karate techniques, but not kata. The reason that techniques in kata may not be clearly one technique or another is becasue they are meant to adapt to a situation. When multiple techniques share the same principle or one principle/technique has multiple uses a general representation is used to illustrate its usage. Then that principle is isolated and trained in a realistic manner to expand a practioner's knowledge of its usage. Its about training in a smart realistic manner. It's about an uniquely okinawan perspective on fighting, knowledge transmission, and effective ways to train "real" fighting skills. Compliant partner practice is the reason why too many karateka have zero grappling skills. If in two man drills you go until your opponent is on the ground and you are stomping his guts out then the grappling aspects of your technique become more apparent. Even in jiyu kumite if you train not to win, but to put your opponent down then your karate training will be more usable. Think inside fighting and controlling your area/distance. Instead of thinking I can't take a step after punching because I will not have enough space for my next technique; think after I punch the step represents a leg technique such as a knee to the outside or inside of the thigh which will create space for the next technique. Hidden in plain sight, thats about right I think.

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    #204307 - 01/31/06 05:08 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: medulanet]
    shoshinkan Offline
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    Medulanet,

    I think you have hit the nail on the head there,

    I actually find that the longer I train the fundamentals (kihon) the better able I am to breakdown the kata into small parts and extract the principles that were always there.

    Its funny but the longer I train the smaller things I work out ripple right through my training and have a dramatic effect on it, and I thought the learning curve got easier...............................................

    Kata would seem to have enough depth to keep me busy for the rest of my training days, how wonderful is that - the authentic kata really are something special for many different reasons.
    _________________________
    Jim Neeter

    www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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    #204308 - 01/31/06 07:51 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: medulanet]
    kakushiite Offline
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    Registered: 02/06/03
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    Medulanet said
    Quote:

    Not all kata are "masking" secret techniques. In a classical okinawan karate system if you know what you are looking at it is clear. In okinawan dance there are some masked karate techniques, but not kata. The reason that techniques in kata may not be clearly one technique or another is becasue they are meant to adapt to a situation.




    I agree that within any kata, some ideas are more readily obvious to a beginner, although some are not. You bring up an excellent point. I believe that many, if not most movements are meant to be used in more than one way. They are approximations, or even simplifications, of several different ideas.

    Shoshinkan said:
    Quote:

    I actually find that the longer I train the fundamentals (kihon) the better able I am to breakdown the kata into small parts and extract the principles that were always there.

    Its funny but the longer I train the smaller things I work out ripple right through my training and have a dramatic effect on it, and I thought the learning curve got easier...............................................




    I agree here too. This knowledge of application takes time. As we enhance the nuances of our skills, we better see how to apply them.

    I like to use the shorin ryu shuto movement as an example. It is found in Pinan Shodan (Heian Nidan) in the fourth direction moving towards the front. It is also found in Kusanku early on as well. In just about every system, these techniques are pretty uniform, with the second and third techniques being mirror images of each other. These common simple movements have an obvious appearance as a set of repetitive basic blocks done while stepping forward.

    Yet the wide array of uses of these is not readily apparent if you have not been taught them. You need to spend a great deal of time doing them, thinking about them, trying things out, finding what works, then refining it, finding what doesn't and dropping it. Phoenixsflame noted that all blocks are attacks. And that is the case here. These shuto "movements" can be used for all sorts of less than obvious counterstrikes.

    In three separate Shorin Ryu derivatives (Okinawan as well as Japanese) beginners are taught to step forward blocking while the attacker steps back while striking. The "finish" to this attack is a final lunge strike, using the finger tips to attack the solar plexus. While a good drill, this concept of the opponent stepping back and striking is not a fully realistic attack combination, nor is a nukite to the solar plexus typically an effective finishing technique. One would expect that if this movement is found in both Kusanku and Pinan Shodan, there must be more to it. And that is the case.

    The step forward while blocking concept certainly has its place as a drill, especially for beginners. But in three systems I have spent time in there was no other interpretation, that was it. In other Shorin Ryu systems I have had exposure to, useful applications that use three successive shutos are either not practiced, or at best shared only with senior level belts. I have had the good fortune to train with dan ranks in most every major Shorin Ryu system. Uniformly, these successive shuto movements are not practiced in what I believe are meaningful ways, certainly not opening up the full complement of there capability. This is not a criticism. One point of my last post is that much of karate has moved to other training paradigms, often with a heavy focus on kumite.

    But with the evolution to new training models, old concepts can be left behind. This is one. Here we have a basic set of movements, coming from the first kata designed for secondary school students, and good application is lacking.

    That to me is the model of kata as it may have existing over hundreds of years. The full capabilities of movements are not taught, and not that obvious. These successive shuto movements, if applied freely can be used all sort of interesting ways, against a left strikes, right strikes, combination strikes, kicks, grab, the works. How this is done is not obvious. If it were, then more dan ranks in more systems would have recognized these ideas.

    That is part of the elegance of these shuto movements. Within their simplicity of common movements such as simple steps walking forward doing shutos, lies a great range of application. IMO, by combining so much in so little, the masters have effectively hidden much from view.

    -Kakushite

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    #204309 - 01/31/06 10:28 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: kakushiite]
    shoshinkan Offline
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    and of course it would seem that time, different masters and styalistic 'development' would also add to the disguise in many systems.

    my journey is one of stripping away the non essential 'styalistic' emphasis and getting back to the functional root movement, this has been extremly rewarding but very hard work, tis ongoing!
    _________________________
    Jim Neeter

    www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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    #204310 - 01/31/06 04:34 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: shoshinkan]
    kakushiite Offline
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    Shoshinkan said:

    Quote:


    and of course it would seem that time, different masters and styalistic 'development' would also add to the disguise in many systems





    Would you or anyone else care to comment on techniques you have seen that “add to the disguise”? (A great expression, btw.)

    -Kakushite

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    #204311 - 01/31/06 05:03 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: kakushiite]
    shoshinkan Offline
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    a simple example would be over use of the flat fist formation in most 'modern' traditional kata.

    another example would be 'fixed' kiai points leading many to think that is the 'finishing' technique when in fact it might not be, this could be at the end of say 4-3 techniques that are in a combination, when in fact they may not be a single combination.

    kata tends to also be 'forced' to look nice within many systems, this makes many movements 'bigger' than perhaps they should be for application.

    just some basic examples
    _________________________
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    www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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    #204312 - 01/31/06 06:40 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: shoshinkan]
    medulanet Offline
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    Quote:

    a simple example would be over use of the flat fist formation in most 'modern' traditional kata.

    another example would be 'fixed' kiai points leading many to think that is the 'finishing' technique when in fact it might not be, this could be at the end of say 4-3 techniques that are in a combination, when in fact they may not be a single combination.

    kata tends to also be 'forced' to look nice within many systems, this makes many movements 'bigger' than perhaps they should be for application.

    just some basic examples




    Is this a disguise or simply misinterpretation for those who just don't understand? Who says a kiai is necessarily a finishing blow? Was that taught by someone who was trying to disguise or did not understand? Larger movements are commonly practiced by beginners. If beginners were never taught how to transition into more advanced technique was real karate being hidden, or were they just never taught properly? Itosu changed karate, yes, but for better and safer instruction for younger karateka to make karate more inclusive. But was that so they could never learn real karate? Or was it so they could eventually be taught real karate systematically in a way that was never done before? Yes, things were held from the Japanese. Yes, some okinawans did not want to teach servicemen everything. But in terms of classical okinawan karate, shorin ryu karate, uchinandi, it is there for all to see, if you know what you are looking at.

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    #204313 - 02/01/06 01:39 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: kakushiite]
    CVV Offline
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    Quote:

    Shoshinkan said:

    Quote:


    and of course it would seem that time, different masters and styalistic 'development' would also add to the disguise in many systems





    Would you or anyone else care to comment on techniques you have seen that “add to the disguise”? (A great expression, btw.)

    -Kakushite




    A shiko-dachi can be a knee press on opponents lower leg.
    In gekisai dai ichi (fukuy-ni) or gekisai dai ni, the shuto movement in the middle of the kata kan be an elbow lock and a choke (like found in the Bubishi, 48 diagrams of self-defense). In the kata however, the movement is expressed as a shuto to the throath (larinx).
    I could go for hours like this.
    Point is that if you are not shown, you would not easily discover this yourselve.

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    #204314 - 02/01/06 02:28 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
    Ed_Morris Offline
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    Gekisai:
    that sequence could also be a strike/sweep/takedown ...remember what the leading leg is doing?
    kindof like this....except imagine the defender turned the other way.
    http://sirgarnet.com/CAUK/Sweep.jpg

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    #204315 - 02/01/06 05:32 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: medulanet]
    shoshinkan Offline
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    Oviously a mixture of disguise and misinterpratation Medulanet, i dont disagree with what your saying.

    However for something to misinterpreted it was proberly presented incorectly, or as taught...............
    _________________________
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    #204316 - 02/03/06 09:36 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
    andy4 Offline
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    Registered: 01/25/06
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    Yes there are hidden/unclear self defence movements in all kata.

    It is a case of working out the movements (all of the movements) and where the kata came from and why it was created.

    Study human anatomy.

    The opening hand sequence to kushanku ?
    Study kung fu forms. (It does have a fighting explanation)

    Why was Naihanchi created?
    What was the bunkia?

    Study the old masters on black and white film. Drilling it.

    (Although parts of Naihanchi are suppose to be missing

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    #204317 - 02/10/06 11:30 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
    Ronin1966 Offline
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    Hello

    <<As for neko ashi dachi, I was told it was also used as starting position for throwing sand to the attacker, first digging the food in the sand.

    Grrrrrr. But that is completely 100% situational, isn't that a tactic rather than a secret??? Why use cat stance, would not ALL kicks work for the purposes of kicking sand???? What happens to those who are in the cities no where near any sand?!? Not, NOT trolling on my part at all merely saying aloud something which is difficult to reconsile to my mind anyway. How can a fundamental secret (cat=sand kicking) be strictly situational?

    J

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    #204318 - 02/10/06 11:53 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
    oldman Offline
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    Quote:

    (cat=sand kicking)




    Litterbox Bunkai

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    #204319 - 02/10/06 12:00 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
    Ed_Morris Offline
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    ah yes, I think I saw that in the oldman's famous boobishi....
    move: 'cat flings kitty litter on razwell'.

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    #204320 - 02/10/06 07:38 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
    shoshinkan Offline
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    'As for neko ashi dachi, I was told it was also used as starting position for throwing sand to the attacker, first digging the food in the sand.'

    and there was me thinking it was for shifting weight slightly back to recieve, allowing use of the front foot!!!!
    _________________________
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    www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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    #204321 - 02/10/06 10:32 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: Ronin1966]
    CVV Offline
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    Quote:

    Hello

    <<As for neko ashi dachi, I was told it was also used as starting position for throwing sand to the attacker, first digging the food in the sand.

    Grrrrrr. But that is completely 100% situational, isn't that a tactic rather than a secret??? Why use cat stance, would not ALL kicks work for the purposes of kicking sand???? What happens to those who are in the cities no where near any sand?!? Not, NOT trolling on my part at all merely saying aloud something which is difficult to reconsile to my mind anyway. How can a fundamental secret (cat=sand kicking) be strictly situational?

    J




    I did not say that the purpose of neko-ashi dachi (cat stance) is to throw sand, just that it is one of the options. This was told to me by my kobudo teacher. He travels twice a year to Okinawa and was a top student of Shinpo Matayoshi. He is now affiliated with Gakiya Yoshiaki Sensei (Okinawa Kobudo Doushi Rensei-Kai).
    In bo-jitsu and eku-jitsu there is a technique called sunakake (throw sand) so this tactic with associated technique was wurth a name.
    I have video material of kata(parts) where Shinpo Matayoshi demonstrates sand throwing (monkey and a eku kata), he would pick up something (sand/rubbish) from the ground and throw it to his opponents.
    This gesture looks a little stupid in a dojo and maybe the historical context is more important. However, in fighting and loving all is permitted.
    To add to the history of neko-ashi dachi, Eiichi Myazato (Jundokan Goju-ryu, one of Miyagi's top students). "The nekoashi dachi stance is said to come from the posture assumed when pulling an oar on the deck of a boat. There were many martial artists among the early revolutionists who avoided the watchfull eye of the law by living and hiding aboard boats." (source "Okinawa den Goju-ryu karate-do" by Eiichi Miyazato).

    Traditionally, Goju-ryu only knows 2 kicks. Front kick (mae-geri, kogan-geri, toe-kick and a heel-foot kick (like kakato-geri but forward) and the side kick (mostley to the knee joint or hip joint, kanzetsu-geri). Only the front kick is suitable to throw sand.

    Have you ever trained the tactic of sand throwing? I have and still do. Apparently the tactic is/was a secret to you.

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    #204322 - 04/16/06 05:36 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
    CVV Offline
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    I discussed the issue why goju-ryu has 1 secret technique in every koryu kata with Takeshi Uchiage.
    Secret means that the technique is shown different or not shown in the execution of the kata.
    This comes from a Chinese/Okinawan tradition not to teach everything to a student untill he is part of the trusted most close circle of students. A student could learn from many teachers and create his own curriculum or school or style. To avoid giving him everything, a teacher would keep certain techniques for himself and hide them from the kata untill he felt that the student could be trusted.
    To uphold this tradition, goju-ryu karate still has 1 secret technique per kata in the sense I explained (not shown or differntly shown in the kata). I was confused about the 2 secrets per kata as this secret is applicable twice, usually into 2 opposing directions and opposing sides.
    The mystics about the secret techniques have formost an historical background. Nowadays information is globaly available through different means (internet, travel, ...) In older days, most people would not travel beyond the boundaries of there village and had far less communication means, usually only by talking to each other or an occasional letter. In that sense, 'secret technique' has a different perception than nowadays.

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    #204323 - 04/16/06 11:05 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: CVV]
    wristtwister Offline
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    Posts: 2210
    Loc: South Carolina
    The arguments about whether there are secret techniques can go on ad nauseum... clearly, there was information witheld from the general populus of a school until they were "trusted" by the teacher because of the methods employed in teaching martial arts in the Orient at the time of their development. Word of mouth and "in person" teaching (usually without the benefit of books, tapes, and scrolls) made "secrets" inevitable. It also had something to do with the student's ability to understand the secrets.

    I've taught my senior student much of what I know, and when it was being done, I told him that he wouldn't understand some of the information for at least 10 years if he continued to practice. He's now in a completely different art, and he still comes to me and says "hey, I remember when you taught me such and such, and it just "came to me" when we were practicing how that applied to what I'm doing."

    The ability to understand some information is just as important as the transmission of it in some cases, and it's not because the student is a dunce, but because their technique isn't at a level to integrate it into their practice. Since kata was the preferred method of teaching karate, it makes sense that the old masters would integrate movements that could be changed slightly later to "reveal" their secrets to trusted students while everyone else just got the "vanilla" version.

    I recently watched a DVD with a current "master" showing bunkai of a particular kata that I was familiar with, and it was clear to me at what point he started "making it up as he went along". His statements started turning to "you can do this, and you can do that" rather than being specific on the nuances and changes that should have been in the kata.

    That doesn't make what he was teaching "a secret", but rather a failure to understand the information himself. Over the years, I've seen a lot of this, and it is prolific in the MA community now. Many of the "secrets" aren't secrets at all, just failures of information transmission.

    This isn't a direct quote, but close enough to make the point as to why there were secrets...
    "The art of war is found in the ability for deception"
    Sun Tsu

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    What man is a man that does not make the world a better place?... from "Kingdom of Heaven"

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    #204324 - 04/16/06 11:19 AM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: oldman]
    CraneMaster Offline
    Newbie

    Registered: 04/15/06
    Posts: 19
    Loc: Mobile, AL
    Quote:

    (cat=sand kicking)




    I think this whole idea of kicking sand is kitty poo. Have you ever tried this at a beach? It's actually rather hard to kick sand and get it to go where you want it to go. Also when I was stationed at Camp Butler on Okinawa I don't really remember seeing much sand except at the beach. Personally I think the Nekoashi Dachi is just used as a prep for easier kicking. IMHO sometimes people look to deep into kata looking for application, then all of a sudden you get people flinging sand and ripping skin with their fingers. LOL

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    #204325 - 05/15/07 01:15 PM Re: Secret techniques in kata [Re: phoenixsflame]
    Stormdragon Offline
    Who Dares Wins
    Professional Poster

    Registered: 08/05/04
    Posts: 3409
    Loc: Salem, OR
    How about blocking being used as checking or jamming when they make a move or get ready to move on you? Then short strikes, elbows, grappling, pressure points, etc.
    _________________________
    Member of DaJoGen MMA school under Dave Hagen and Team Chaos fight team under Denver Mangiyatan and Chris Toquero, ran out of Zanshin Martial Arts in Salem Oregon: http://www.zanshinarts.org/Home.aspx,

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