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#293111 - 10/12/06 09:28 PM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: oldman]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
"how one behaves" - I think is accurate. I believe kata contains principles to illustrate good reflexive responses to various angles of various attack. but kata study only illustrates this as theory....the other half to kata study is actual 2-person training.

I also agree with oldman's 'artistic appreciation' view of kata, as it relates to the process of disecting and discovering underlaying principles.

maybe it's creating what wasn't there by forced-fitted justification....or maybe some are on to something.

at the very least, if kata interpretation bothers people, then they can think of it as like when linguists decypher hiroglyphics from an undocumented language....very few really care their process of translating it -the rest just want to know what it says.

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#293112 - 10/12/06 09:31 PM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: oldman]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Mark,

This is a good post and a well thought out one, but I would rather use the term deconstruction here. And some might quibble at semantics, but I think it is necessary. Your exploration is a legitimate travel through this kata, because it is personal and affects your appreciation of your art. You are going backward, sight seeing so to speak, without the earnest want of trying to fit an exact reason to a particular solution.

The aspect of reverse engineering that I am coloring here is one of intent. In our modern age, reverse engineering is often done by competing manufacturers who are looking to produce a similar product to one already available in the market.

A solution is already at hand, how one comes to it, is the question. This is not evolution of a concept to answer a problem, to me it is rationalization of what is give to answer questions of why such a solution exists. Does the process of doing something one way or the other encompass this solution? Might be a trick of the light, but it might just mean that there could be several interpretations for what has gone before...all equally valid (or not).

People seem to want to invest so much in finding the fountain of knowledge in the "original" kata so that by peeking at it, they can gain so much more than they already have. Who knows why this was done a certain way, you can guess, doesn't make it right...or wrong. We just won't know without evidence.

It might even be a pleasant intellectual puzzle to find something here or there, but then the contention that figuring out the "original" reason somehow will gain you that much more, is neither here nor there. It will still just be a guess, and you would be in the same boat with that knowledge.

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#293113 - 10/12/06 10:45 PM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: butterfly]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
I agree with you to a point. I mentioned in one of my posts somewhere that kata study starts with assumptions (and the assumptions could be different per instructor).

don't like the assumptions? don't train kata.

the part I disargee with you on is that deconstruction only reveils a set response in a particular situation.

thats equivalent to me saying the same for what you were showing me when I visited there. the opponent stepped in and punched - you taught a set response.

it would be unfair for me to assume that since you teach that, it must be the ONLY variation your system of learning has given that particular attack. it's a short-sighted/uninformed view...just as many views are of kata criticsm.

actually, Brad, the drills/principles you demonstrated have only a different strategy...they could have just as easily come from kata. we train kata more or less the same way you were teaching your drills. whether you keep all that in your head, or have it packaged in a recallable form...whats the difference?

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#293114 - 10/12/06 11:22 PM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: oldman]
Chatan1979 Offline
Member

Registered: 03/21/05
Posts: 338
Loc: Mahomet , Illinois
Quote:

Reverse engineering is not a process relegated to understanding Kata. You see it applied in a variety of arts and sciences. Researching medieval Trebuches, determing the pigments ground by Divinci or Rembrandt or how the pyramids built. Now I'm not planning to build a pyramid anytime soon but some study may effect how I go about a room addition or a deck. The information gain may be, or at leat seem usless.

As an art student I often got permission to copy paintings by different masters in the collection of the Museum of the Art Instiute in Chicago. Not that anyone would see it but the time that I spent under those master can be seen in everyone of my cartoons. Contraposto.

Study and the pursuit of understanding may be both pragmatic and pleasureable. I could judge my success by the sale of my painting,or the quality of my work as judged by others. I could base their value on the numbers of competitions I have won or what museum collections I am included in.

I'll leave it up tp others to decide. Whatever I do I want to enjoy the learning and growing.

I am a fan of obtuse quotes. If I may paraphrase Sakuo Sakumoto, "Kata is a room with four corners. A teacher will give you three. You have to find the other yourself".

So I look at Itosu's schoolboy Kata. I can't say I chose to study them. I showed up somewhere and there they were. Maligned by Pure okinawan practioners, considered useless by practioners using more progessive methods. I ponder, and practice the Pinans and in his creation I meet the man. I get a chance to go inside his mind and thoughts. He created something for ...well...dare I say it?...Me.

Just as very few would see Carrivagio in my cartoons even fewer would see Itosu in the way I carry myself. If the day should come by some intersection of time, stupidity and chance, I may be forced to defend myself. Based on many factors and fate I may or may not get my as$ beat. One thing for sure though, the poor [censored] will not see Itosu coming.

I'm not a student of language, especially japanese. I remember reading at one time the definition of the words in their original language. As I don't read Japanese I will share their definition. Kata means..."how one behaves".

Whatever that means.




Completely agree here. This is how I have always tried to convey kata to my students and in my own studies
_________________________
There is always someone who knows more, and noone who knows it all....

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#293115 - 10/16/06 12:05 AM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: Ed_Morris]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Quote:

actually, Brad, the drills/principles you demonstrated have only a different strategy...they could have just as easily come from kata. we train kata more or less the same way you were teaching your drills. whether you keep all that in your head, or have it packaged in a recallable form...whats the difference?




Ed,

I guess it's partially a question of inefficiency for me. First, I see no problem with kata as a cultural or stylistic representation. Both Mark and Jim acknowledge this as at least one of their reasons for its study. My concern has always been with its consideration as a useful tool for "fighting."

I guess the example I would use would devolve into a thought experiment with two individuals: each being equal, and only differing in their study. One would do pad/bag work and kata. The other pad/bag work and practicing with a partner. I will wager good money on one of these guys, and it wouldn't be the one doing kata.

Now, I know, the caveat coming from the Kata Crew would be one where kata would be qualified as a tool to be used along side other training methods to extract its useful points. My problem with this is the following: even though kata people acknowledge the abilities of those trained fighters and martial artists who do not apply themselves to kata training(i.e. grapplers, judoka, MT, BJJers, etc.), they still have an insistance that kata is something that can add to the fighter. However, it never seems to prove a problem by its lack. Therefore, its addition to training becomes suspect when looking at technical utitilty.

My take is that those who train kata and are good fighters would be good, even without the training. Within a traditional sparring match, I have yet to see a recommendation to the loser, whose round kick might have been pretty bad when he attempted to hit his opponent, to do extra kata for his preparation for his next match.

-B

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#293116 - 10/16/06 07:13 AM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: butterfly]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
Brad, your process of coming up with sound responses and discarding ones that don't seem as sound...what do you call that process?

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#293117 - 10/16/06 08:36 AM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: butterfly]
ANDY44 Offline
Revolutionary!

Registered: 07/01/06
Posts: 814
Quote:


I guess the example I would use would devolve into a thought experiment with two individuals: each being equal, and only differing in their study. One would do pad/bag work and kata. The other pad/bag work and practicing with a partner. I will wager good money on one of these guys, and it wouldn't be the one doing kata.





Hi Butterfly.My thoughts.
Firstly my re study of kata is limited so most of these are observations.I think there is a vast difference between kata(self defence) and karate competiton fighting. Two different animals where techniques might cross at sometime.

Ok if I could base this on my observations of the head guy at the Jundokan(Goju) and I wanted to train to try to get to his level. Firstly he is doing an impressive two man drill on vidio using techniques taken from kata. That is one drill. There must be many of these drills. I think a person would have a great deal of difficulty remembering all of the techniques with out kata practice to put into any kind of kata based partner drill of that kind. .The only means of learning the techniques for the drills would be daily solo kata practice then at some other times bagwork conditioning partner work basics other drills etc. Then eventualy the whole thing could be used in self defence /combat etc.
I doubt if anybody could replicate what he is doing on vidio with out daily kata practice
and even some would have a hard time if they did practice Kata.

Quote:


and martial artists who do not apply themselves to kata training(i.e. grapplers, judoka, MT, BJJers, etc.), they still have an insistance that kata is something that can add to the fighter. However, it never seems to prove a problem by its lack. Therefore, its addition to training becomes suspect when looking at technical utitilty.




From my observations of Judo kata to me makes a lot of sense, BJJ ers do have a form of shadow fighting and they do Practice it.
Quote:


My take is that those who train kata and are good fighters would be good, even without the training. Within a traditional sparring match, I have yet to see a recommendation to the loser, whose round kick might have been pretty bad when he attempted to hit his opponent, to do extra kata for his preparation for his next match.




Kata is as far as I can see meant to be for self defence.I see only a limited amount of kicks in trad karate kata.I think you are refering to competition sparring which would mean isolating the kick and training it.
To me Kata and competition sparring are two different animals. That is why top competiton fighters run seminars that train only for competiton fighting.

Thanks ANDY


Edited by ANDY44 (10/16/06 08:40 AM)

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#293118 - 10/16/06 12:57 PM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: ANDY44]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Andy,

For me I agree that much of point sparring and traditional "tag" sparring does not reflect well on "real" use.

But the question I would have for you, is that outside of sparring or bag and pad work, how do you punch or kick or grab differently if you wanted to defend yourself?

My consideration is that you don't. You will punch exactly how you would (all be it with more emphasis) when sparring with a partner. You don't suddenly change the mechanics of what you are doing to affect a different outcome. The only difference I see is one of intent and perhaps a larger arsenal to choose from when in a defensive situation. However, there is no change in the "platform" from where you will be launching these techniques.

This also brings up additional questions in my mind of why not include these principles in sparring rather than isolate them in some overly rigid and formalized movement that has no one-to-one comparison to its application? It's an extra step that you don't need.

-B

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#293119 - 10/16/06 10:21 PM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: butterfly]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
I disagree. a SD strike is not a sparring strike. show me an uppercut or hitting with your forearm in point-sparring. or a reverse punch in self defense. well, ok a reverse punch could have good effect but the fundamental strategies are different and therfore their execution.


SD: receiving parry while decapitating the guy by striking hard on his neck with your forearm. mawashi-style.

sparring: hop out of the way, boink in for a long-range chambered tap to the ribs, and spring back to safety. (lol...ok I exaggurate)

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#293120 - 10/17/06 01:52 AM Re: "Reverse Engineering" [Re: Ed_Morris]
butterfly Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 3012
Loc: Torrance, CA
Ed,

Depends on the sparring. And you tell me which sparring will allow a neck crank to break a vertabrae or any disallowed/dangerous technique? How does anyone practice this in sparring? So in essence, regardless of style or type of system, one may acknowledge these "terrible" techniques, but NO ONE is going to pull them out of his pocket in a sparring session.

If you are aware of the technique and can get to a reasonable point to actually performing that technique, you are there if you know it. However, if you fundamentally think of sparring as an exercise in light contact with a strategic emphasis in tapping someone on the chest and getting out, you are not considering how many others see sparring--or practice it.

When sparring where I study (of course you are not doing the "decapitation" move ), but you are there to take down the opponent...knock him down or force him through contact to turn away from you ---from either hard strikes or knocking the wind out of him so that he can not continue his attack. You do not stop if you make contact.

For the MMA stylist, I see it as a one-step up, not necessarily in intensity, but in use of technique to accomodate the ground game. This is where it does not stop until submission. I have even done this a few times. The overtures to sparring with less contact or less realism will make one consider a lot of possibilities that are just not there when being punched in the face or shot in upon.

BTW, there are always rules to sparring...I'll be frank about that. But not all sparring is the same, nor is the intent of all sparring the same.

-B

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