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#282888 - 09/02/06 04:07 PM Kata, cat stance, and power generation
medulanet Offline
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Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
One important aspect of power generation in matsubayashi is to shift weight off of one foot and then back to it to add weight to waza. This is initially trained in Pinan kata with the transition from a cat stance to a flat cat stance. It is then developed further in Naihanchi. And then finally developed even more in the classical kata. This practice brings together several principles of power generation and can be very useful in creating amazing power. At the higher levels the weight shifts become less noticeable and movement is very subtle. Any thoughts?

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#282889 - 09/02/06 04:12 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
Chatan1979 Offline
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Registered: 03/21/05
Posts: 338
Loc: Mahomet , Illinois
WHile I do not practice Matsubayashi Ryu, I do try to incorporate this principle into my shotokan. There is just an amazing diference in the kind of power that you can generate. Plus if you are using your hip rotation as well, it can be devastating
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#282890 - 09/02/06 05:42 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
ANDY44 Offline
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Plenty of thoughts.

I can see how it should work in the pinans and naihanchi


Ok using cat stance
IM trying to apply the techniques on my heavy bag work.


Ok Im in flat footed cat stance facing the bag

Weigth transfer from the front to the back foot as well as hip twisted to rear foot


Technique thrown punch for example as the rear leg is flexed(coil spring sort of thing) with a hip twist forward.(all together)
but the weigth is then on both feet as opposed to just the front when the punch lands?.

Then I pull off using hip twist pushing the weigth back to the rear leg



thats it.





Edited by ANDY44 (09/02/06 06:09 PM)

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#282891 - 09/02/06 07:02 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: ANDY44]
medulanet Offline
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Not quite what I am referring to. As you step, shift, slide, or sink into a cat stance your weight is directly above the heel of your back foot. This action is usually in a situation where you are shifting of the way by utilizing tai sabaki and deflecting/blocking an attack. As soon as the front leg recenters pointing at your target you sink, engage koshi to produce gammaku, and shift weight forward slightly. It is a technique similar to the power generation in Naihanchi kata. It is why in Matsubayashi we practice Pinan kata first. It really begins to develop power generation in a small area. It is the difference between hitting someone with a chain or a chain with an iron ball at the end of it. In american football when you hit someone people talk about bringing your hips or putting your hips into it. This is very similar to that. The hips or koshi don't move forward very far, but it greatly amplifies the power. It also helps you maintain good mobility to continue the attack, grab your opponent, throw them down, move around, or whatever.

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#282892 - 09/02/06 10:31 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
ANDY44 Offline
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Think I might have got it.



Its why I like weight training. Its not complicated.
Some weight trainers might be complicated but weight training isnt.


Edited by ANDY44 (09/02/06 11:05 PM)

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#282893 - 09/03/06 12:09 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: ANDY44]
medulanet Offline
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Actually this is not complicated but second nature to people who move naturally. Unfortunately in the U.S. its all about strength. Trust me I know, I played fullback in college. I got my bench up to 405 and my squat up to 520. I was able to dominate LBs because of my strength and my hard head. In okinwan karate it is about how to gain maximum power with minimum effort. Why hit someone with only your arm which weighs maybe 15 or 20 pounds when you can hit them with 70 or 80% of your body weight. Even with the hip rotation if you don't put your body weight into your waza you will not get maximum power. Matsubayashi is all about natural movements that are second nature to natural movements. That is why okinawan karate is cultural. It helps if you move like the okinawans to make it work. They have a great awareness of their center and use it in everything. Americans/Westerners usually do not.

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#282894 - 09/03/06 01:07 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
ANDY44 Offline
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I totaly agree with you..But to me at the moment it means changing my training(complicated to me) some what but it will be worth it.

I have used around the poundages you descibed in the past.I still rep now with two by 145 pound dumbels on a dumbell below chest, dumb bell bench press. I can also strike quite hard and the speed is getting back to some where near where i want it( bare knuckle) bare handed strikes.(isnt there yet)

My hip action is as far as im concerned not bad.Needs more work but slowly getting there But I know it isnt where it should be.

And i see the okinawans using body mechanics that I would like. I also know that the double hip action when aquired is good.

What i also have to consider is I am 53 years of age.
so in years to come my strength might diminish.I hope it doesnt,hasnt of yet but it might.With that in mind I am looking for other methods of power speed production.
Looks like i will be training till im 72
One of the reasons I am following/ interested in this training process.

Another thing i have been doing is re studying the katas pinans(heians 1 to 5) naihanchi and kushanku(kanku dai)
with some of their variations.
with different bunkia. again in more detail.

some of the bunkia I have seen is total rubbish.\some good
some very practical.
Thanks

ANDY


Edited by ANDY44 (09/03/06 01:42 AM)

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#282895 - 09/03/06 08:12 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
ANDY44 Offline
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HI

Morning session.
Looks like its there. Had to slow things down but seems less use of upper body muscle power.

More like a whipping action..



Edited by ANDY44 (09/03/06 08:13 AM)

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#282896 - 09/07/06 07:52 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
ANDY44 Offline
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Registered: 07/01/06
Posts: 814




Edited by ANDY44 (09/07/06 12:00 PM)

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#282897 - 09/07/06 07:21 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
Alejandro Offline
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Loc: Las Cruces, NM USA
Nice posts!

Is gammaku something that is produced? I understand gammaku as an area of the midsection toward the back, part of the system of back muscles. I would think of gammaku as being engaged not produced. Were you referring to chinkuchi? Just wanted to clarify.

I like what you say about this being more in tune with natural body motion. The more I train kata, the more I see and feel such pcinciples. The cat stance(s) definitely take advantage of this, especially when viewed as a short intermediary position rather than "kamae" (as you know, of course). I feel that cat stance-like positions are usefull in "recentering" the moment before the execution of a technique, aiding in power generation. Even boxers will use similar body positions before the execution of a hard cross.
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#282898 - 09/07/06 08:02 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Alejandro]
medulanet Offline
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As I understand it Koshi refers to the entire hip girdle including the lower back and the muscles inside of the hip girdle. Large hip movements develop the koshi or more specifically the muscles contained in and around it. In turn this development helps you develop gammaku which is a special power developed by using the koshi unique to okinwan karate. Chinkuchi as I understand it is a connection between the entire body when producing power in okinwan karate. I have heard okinwan karate referred to as full body boxing and I believe their development of chinkuchi is the reason for this. I heard a story of Kyan's chinkuchi being so great that the was able to throw heavy bags of rice by hooking the end of a long pole where the bags were tied and using a chudan soto uke (outside chest block) motion to tosst hem several feet.

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#282899 - 09/07/06 08:34 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
Alejandro Offline
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Thanks for the great elaboration, I always enjoy your posts.

By any chance have you read a fairly recent Journal of Asian Martial Arts article on spinal rotation or "waist power"? I cannot remember the exact title, but the article makes interesting comparisons to hip-driven motion and the more subtle motions of the spinal/back muscles. Though based on chinese martial arts and western principles and devoid of any Okinawan or Japanese terminology, it may be valid in the exploration of koshi, gammaku, etc.

Sorry for getting off track!
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#282900 - 09/07/06 10:17 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Alejandro]
WuXing Offline
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Registered: 10/24/05
Posts: 481
Loc: Idaho, USA
Use of the waist and hips, and full body power is definately not something uniquely Okinawan. Most Chinese martial arts contain these power methods, some at an even more refined and subtler level than any Okinawan style. This is not to slight the Okinawan arts which are a primary part of my practice, afterall (Matsubayashi even), but to point out that Okinawan karate really isn't so far from its Chinese roots, when you get down to it.

"Full body power", in fact, is the primary method of power generation for internal arts. My karate training with koshi gave me a jump on learning internal power (which I'm still working on).

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#282901 - 09/07/06 11:03 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Alejandro]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
JAMA
VOLUME 14 ~ NUMBER 1 ~ 2005 -- Niiler, T. and Gong, H. "The theory of lower spinal rotation - How it serves as a style-independent description of waist power"

also check out:

1994 — Volume 3 • Number 3
Yokoyama, K. “The sources of power in karate”

http://www.goviamedia.com/journal/issues.html


this may spur some thoughts, or bring back memories:
http://www.fightingarts.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php/Cat/0/Number/15816578/page/0/fpart/1/vc/1

sorry to perpetuate the drift in topic, so I'll try to put it back a little. I see 'cat stance' used in a few ways, all of which have something in common:

* as a split-second transitional placement right before a low kick. (usu. w/ tai sabaki). Think of it as a change in momentum. if you slide to one side or angle, the thing that slows your momentum is your front leg. you are using the front leg as a sortof counterbalance to change momentum direction quicker.

* as a transitioning surface to smash someones face on. (imagine muay thai, bringing the persons face to your knee).
http://69.94.112.159/downloads/images/knee_img_0003.jpg
pretty simple but good idea. it spans styles, so that says something. what people are calling 'cat stance' in TMA would be the split second position the guy in the picture was in right before lifting his knee.

* also, as a sort of jujitsu either throw or neck crank transition like deal.
http://www.terra.es/personal/fjmoreno/taijitsu/serie24.JPG
also, a really good one. the pic doesn't do it as much justice, but thats the best I could find.

* another one I refer to as 'the workbench'. dropping the person's back down on your knee while moving. no, not this: http://ppc.warhawkenterprises.com/brucelee/brucegodbackbreak2.jpg lol
more like a takedown onto your knee, where you can 'work on them like a workbench' for a second before they fall. (probably one of the takedowns they removed from judo)

* then of course the submission-like natural movement:
http://www.zendojujitsu.com/ju_jitsu_images/jujitsu.gif

in each one of those, the common jist is continuous movement...there is no cat 'stance'. the 'position' only works when centers of gravity (of both people) are in motion.

so why is static 'cat stance' even taught? my theory anyway: In order not to loose this important principle when karate went en-masse, it was catagorized and taught as a stance - but in doing so, it's like trying to watch a movie by studying each individual frame. misses the story.

p.s. and I'll mention just to tick people off, that those applications can be worked from kata interpretation. (I suppose even the BL one)

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#282902 - 09/07/06 11:59 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Ed_Morris]
Alejandro Offline
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Posts: 940
Loc: Las Cruces, NM USA
Thanks, Ed, always thorough!!!
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#282903 - 09/08/06 08:37 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
ANDY44 Offline
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Registered: 07/01/06
Posts: 814
Quote:

Not quite what I am referring to. As you step, shift, slide, or sink into a cat stance your weight is directly above the heel of your back foot. This action is usually in a situation where you are shifting of the way by utilizing tai sabaki and deflecting/blocking an attack. As soon as the front leg recenters pointing at your target you sink, engage koshi to produce gammaku, and shift weight forward slightly. It is a technique similar to the power generation in Naihanchi kata. It is why in Matsubayashi we practice Pinan kata first. It really begins to develop power generation in a small area. It is the difference between hitting someone with a chain or a chain with an iron ball at the end of it. In american football when you hit someone people talk about bringing your hips or putting your hips into it. This is very similar to that. The hips or koshi don't move forward very far, but it greatly amplifies the power. It also helps you maintain good mobility to continue the attack, grab your opponent, throw them down, move around, or whatever.





Hi

Ok Im begining to see the use of the pinans kata methods and naihanchi kata methods and there connection and the use of cat stance / naihanchi stance for power generation.

or as you refer to it as engage koshi to produce gammaku

getting there slowly.

I have looked at some reverse engineering of bunkia and som e of it is quite good stuff.

I am looking or trying to look at the methodolgy of using kata as a learning system and I am getting there slowly but getting there.

You mentioned once that you once studied with a high ranking
karate ka from your own stlye? where was that?
America?



Edited by ANDY44 (09/08/06 08:45 AM)

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#282904 - 09/09/06 05:36 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Ed_Morris]
ANDY44 Offline
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Registered: 07/01/06
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[* as a split-second transitional placement right before a low kick. (usu. w/ tai sabaki). Think of it as a change in momentum. if you slide to one side or angle, the thing that slows your momentum is your front leg. you are using the front leg as a sortof counterbalance to change momentum direction quicker.



so why is static 'cat stance' even taught? my theory anyway: In order not to loose this important principle when karate went en-masse, it was catagorized and taught as a stance - but in doing so, it's like trying to watch a movie by studying each individual frame. misses the story.

p.s. and I'll mention just to tick people off, that those applications can be worked from kata interpretation. (I suppose even the BL one) :





Hi ED
I think

the cat stance is the power source for the hips there fore the power ends in the kick you described.



And it was taught static partly for that reason

One of the reasons Cat stance was taught was because it is a power source.

Ed you said BL ?
and I'll mention just to tick people off, that those applications can be worked from kata interpretation. (I suppose even the BL one) :


Andy


Edited by ANDY44 (09/09/06 05:44 PM)

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#282905 - 09/09/06 05:42 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
ANDY44 Offline
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Registered: 07/01/06
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Quote:

okinwan karate. I have heard okinwan karate referred to as full body boxing and I believe their development of chinkuchi is the reason for this.




I had an idea about that. I read that te( I think it was te) was actualy boxing on okinawa.I think I posted it ages ago when the history of karate was being discusses. The more I see the top guys doing there thing the more I beleive that karate did have it roots in a form of okinawan boxing.

Just my thoughts


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#282906 - 11/14/08 08:54 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: ANDY44]
harlan Offline
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Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
bump

Just found this. Have to say...I had no use for cat-stance until some recent bunkai opened my eyes. Now...I reeaaally hate the stance...as I can see how incredible it is for power generation and how far I have to go to get good at it.

A new goal for the upcoming year.

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#282907 - 11/14/08 06:42 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
janxspirit Offline
Member

Registered: 02/21/08
Posts: 132
Quote:

One important aspect of power generation in matsubayashi is to shift weight off of one foot and then back to it to add weight to waza. This is initially trained in Pinan kata with the transition from a cat stance to a flat cat stance. It is then developed further in Naihanchi. And then finally developed even more in the classical kata. This practice brings together several principles of power generation and can be very useful in creating amazing power. At the higher levels the weight shifts become less noticeable and movement is very subtle. Any thoughts?




This is true of any decent striking form - power is generated by a transfer of weight from one foot to the other.

I'd avoid the cat stance however.
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#282908 - 11/14/08 09:49 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: janxspirit]
medulanet Offline
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Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
Quote:

I'd avoid the cat stance however.




Very wise. The right karate man is very dangerous when utilizing its principles in fighting. Very wise indeed.
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#282909 - 11/18/08 04:33 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
BrianS Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
Quote:

Quote:

I'd avoid the cat stance however.




Very wise. The right karate man is very dangerous when utilizing its principles in fighting. Very wise indeed.




My head instructor was a master in the utilization of the cat stance imo.
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#282910 - 11/19/08 11:20 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: harlan]
ThomsonsPier Offline
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Registered: 06/24/04
Posts: 475
Loc: Reading, UK
Quote:

bump

Just found this. Have to say...I had no use for cat-stance until some recent bunkai opened my eyes. Now...I reeaaally hate the stance...as I can see how incredible it is for power generation and how far I have to go to get good at it.

A new goal for the upcoming year.



As with many other techniques, I've recently discovered that a correct cat stance causes pain on both the training and receiving ends. *slinks off to tend to aching leg muscles*
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#282911 - 12/09/08 12:53 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: ANDY44]
Neko456 Offline
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Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 3260
Loc: Midwest City, Ok, USA
Try this on the bag and in training the cat stance is in almost all the arts that I've studied from Indo, Filipino, to Jujitsu, Boxing and most Karate. It's just not a frozen position it's almost a natural responce to avoid an attack while staying close. It is done in a blink of an eye instead of a posture that you can see in a Kata.

If some one struck at your face or lower abdomen one short natural responce would be to pull your head back while sliding your feet to one side or the other or straight back for a second. Maybe leaving the front foot pointing at him. An feint or attack at the midriff might naturally cause you to suck in your waist/hips taking the midriff slightly out of range. In a conflict the cat stance technique can be as subtle as pivioting away on the front foot to take the head & or body out of range or deflecting the blow with the body or making it miss as we do when weaving or in Kurarunfa and immeadiately turning back in to strike with a power strike. Or using the pivot to strike as we defend/counter.

Some of us old timers may remember Jersey Joe Walcot's counter offensive move where he would pivot or step away avoid being hit or confuse and return with a devestating right hand. This is the same movement I see in Cat stance but there is a difference in application and whats seen in Kata. One is frozen the other is done in the blink of an eye almost naturally. Almost like the philosophy like a mirror respond, or now you see me now you don't. This can be a very powerful move along with the element of surprises.
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#282912 - 12/10/08 12:29 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
Ronin1966 Offline
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Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3116
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Medulant:

Dislike the foreign terminology as IMHO being completely unnecessary. Lets try explaining the various terms you use in better detail so we don't have to play the ~do not speak Japanese~ game... that's completely artificial!

Better explaination will give us all the same information to start from.

Jeff

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#282913 - 12/10/08 03:54 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Ronin1966]
medulanet Offline
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Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
Simply put, cat stance provides a platform for explosive power in multiple directions. I am not, however, referring to the 90/10 weight distribution cat stance where you have to be able to balance on one foot for an hour. This type of stance and training causes one to be "stuck" in your stance and is only useful for those with highly developed athletic ability. And they don't really need karate in the first place.
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#282914 - 12/10/08 09:11 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
harlan Offline
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Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
ditto

I thought 'cat stance' was a static pose...now I have an inkling of the power it generates in certain dynamics.

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#282915 - 12/10/08 09:38 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: harlan]
student_of_life Offline
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"now I have an inkling of the power it generates in certain dynamics."

can i ask what dynamics your talking about? i'm not sure i follow what your implying a dynamic is exactly.
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#282916 - 12/15/08 07:05 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: student_of_life]
Shonuff Offline
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Med, what weight distribution do you use?
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#282917 - 12/15/08 10:13 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Shonuff]
medulanet Offline
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Weight of the body is centered over the back leg. Weight of the front leg is on the front foot.
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#282918 - 12/15/08 11:33 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: medulanet]
Spade Offline
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Registered: 01/31/06
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Loc: Auburn, Al.
Could someone point me in the direction of a video showing a moving cat stance? I don't think I follow.
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#282919 - 12/16/08 11:06 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Spade]
student_of_life Offline
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not speaking for med, he might have a better example of a "moving cat stance", but this vid has some great stuff. at 2:44 paul uses a cat stance to attack while retreating back, preparing to lunge foward again. simple principles, shift back to create space to go foward anew. since the weight is more on the back leg the front leg can be used to check/kick/or set up a throw as you move your body foward again.
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#282920 - 12/16/08 11:57 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: student_of_life]
Spade Offline
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Eh, what video?
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#282921 - 12/16/08 01:53 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Spade]
student_of_life Offline
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its not supposed to make sense

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#282922 - 12/16/08 05:54 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: student_of_life]
Spade Offline
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Registered: 01/31/06
Posts: 255
Loc: Auburn, Al.
Oh, ok. in this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQ4RIAVm_pI

at the 58 second mark, is that still a cat stance, or do you guys call is something else?
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#282923 - 12/16/08 06:00 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Spade]
student_of_life Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/12/05
Posts: 1032
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
in the vid you posted i see a cat stance at the 53 second mark. at the 58 second mark i see a cross step from cat stance into a kick then landing in a short front stance.
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#282924 - 12/16/08 06:06 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: Spade]
shoshinkan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2662
Loc: UK
Paul Vunak seems to know his stuff for sure,

but why make a big point about the knife locking out (they do sometimes IMO) not being realistic - and them demo that all the way through the video?

He then goes on to 'check' the knife attack at middle range, setting himself up to be cut on the retraction everytime?

Interesting but poorly presented material IMO.
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Jim Neeter

www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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#282925 - 12/16/08 07:11 PM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: student_of_life]
Spade Offline
Member

Registered: 01/31/06
Posts: 255
Loc: Auburn, Al.
Quote:

in the vid you posted i see a cat stance at the 53 second mark. at the 58 second mark i see a cross step from cat stance into a kick then landing in a short front stance.




Your "cat stance" Is what I have trained as a "T" stance, and the cross step, we called a "crane" stance.

As for the usefulness of the actual stance, it does set up a front kick real well. especially if someone is aggressing you.
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"always paddle your own canoe." - Cord

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#282926 - 12/17/08 07:11 AM Re: Kata, cat stance, and power generation [Re: shoshinkan]
student_of_life Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/12/05
Posts: 1032
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
in mr vunaks defence before he checks he has already defanged the snaked by cutting the knife hand/arm of his attacker, the checking pretectects his body from the follow through of his attacker. at middle range if paul had missed the defanging move, then his opponents knife would have carried on to a vital target like the neck or torso/heart.

he covered why he uses the check at middle range as opposed to "long arm range" and how the arm is used differently at close range. that might clear some of it up, i thought the whole video was gold and im considering getting the dvd's.
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