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#306201 - 12/07/06 02:51 AM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
shoshinkan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2662
Loc: UK
shut it and stop being difficult

if I had a student that naturally wanted to work the kata mirror then they would do so, with some work the way everyone else did it after a few years training.
_________________________
Jim Neeter

www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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#306202 - 12/07/06 08:17 AM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: shoshinkan]
Ed_Morris Offline
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Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
people are side-stepping the point...or either that, I haven't read properly what victor, med and sho are trying to get across. it's a simple flow of logic:

1. some parts within kata show both sides as a way of working both sides. true or false?

2. what we consider 'basic/core techniques' - punches, kicks, parry, strikes, throws, etc when trained by themselves as isolated drills, both sides are trained. true or false?

3. if basic/core principles and techniques (many if not all of which can be found in kata) are trained both sides, then is it logical to assume drills that work both sides of anything isolated out from kata? regardless if the kata actually shows both sides or not. true or false?

btw, I'll try to make it clear Jim - I'm not talking about memorizing and training an entire mirrored form - I'm ONLY talking about after extracting something particular of your choice from kata and doing an isolated drill on that one particular principle/technique. but if you aren't training that way and only train literally what the kata shows as medulanet says he does, then my initial assumption was off to begin with.

it would be a curious practice if throws were only a potential over one hip...or wrap-ups had to be from one side of entry. being comfortable with both sides for any given practice..isn't that in itself, as victor says, adding 'new dimensions' and opening possibilities to the technique?

actually, since our bodies are semetrical, it's hard for me to imagine a fighting principle that didn't automatically address both sides...in fact, it could be argued that it's inherent.

nobody answered the question: what happens if I find out I'm better and more comfortable on one side with a 2-person drill that happens to be the opposite side of what the kata shows? should I spend the time to force the 'weaker' less comfortable side?

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#306203 - 12/07/06 08:34 AM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
shoshinkan Offline
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Registered: 05/10/05
Posts: 2662
Loc: UK
'nobody answered the question: what happens if I find out I'm better and more comfortable on one side with a 2-person drill that happens to be the opposite side of what the kata shows? should I spend the time to force the 'weaker' less comfortable side?'

No I dont believe that we should force the weaker side, train it and over time see improvements but do not make a big deal out of it is my awnser, to many other things to be getting on with IMO.
_________________________
Jim Neeter

www.shoshinkanuk.blogspot.com

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#306204 - 12/07/06 09:21 AM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
Victor Smith Offline
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Registered: 06/01/00
Posts: 3220
Loc: Derry, NH
Ed,

I think weíre shifting perceptions on what this topic is about.

To try and answer your questions.

1. some parts within kata show both sides as a way of working both sides. true or false.

My answer is true, from one point of view.

2. what we consider 'basic/core techniques' - punches, kicks, parry, strikes, throws, etc when trained by themselves as isolated drills, both sides are trained. true or false?

Itís not a true and false. I both do this and I donít train singular techniques this
way. For beginners true, for advancing students mostly true, for more advancing students likely not on any regular basis.

3. if basic/core principles and techniques (many if not all of which can be found in kata) are trained both sides, then is it logical to assume drills that work both sides of anything isolated out from kata? regardless if the kata actually shows both sides or not. true or false?

As Iíve stated one of my traditions of study does this extensively, and at the same time many of my other drilling approaches also come from the same source.

I'm ONLY talking about after extracting something particular of your choice from kata and doing an isolated drill on that one particular principle/technique

Ed, what youíre getting at it the art of being an instructor, which requires you to address the studentsí needs, not be a cookie cutter and train everyone the same way.

One way of looking at this is what boxers or karate fighters use in competition. They donít fight two ways, they tend to take their strongest side and work their techniques accordingly. To fit their strongest attacks into any attacker. Judo players do the same thing, work their strongest techniques.

So one answer is to always use what you do strongest from any position. That is a fine approach to address a random attack.

That doesnít preclude to keep working on you weaknesses, but unless they become your strengths, intelligent design would be not to make them your primary choice.

As time passes our abilities keep changing, good and bad, and we have to keep re-addressing how to utilize our skills sets day by day.

So part of this is what an instructor chooses to build a students potential. Part of this is also our self knowledge to know where we are today.

My students donít choose how they train, I control that. When they practice on their own that becomes their responsibility.
_________________________
victor smith bushi no te isshinryu offering free instruction for 30 years

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#306205 - 12/07/06 12:05 PM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Victor Smith]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
there are so many principles that appear in kata on only one side, yet the principles are symetrical and irrelavent to side (it's assumed both attacker and defender have 2 arms and 2 legs each).

during 2-person drills, we don't know which side the attacker is going to throw with...and it shouldn't matter. of course there'll be a favorite side. after we find our favorite side for any given principle, does it make sense to discontinue it on the other? what if the favored side doesn't correspond to the kata side?

ok, I'll drop making the point... let me ask this instead: in Sanseiru, there is the kick/guard/strike :
this one:
http://www.fightingarts.com/reading/article.php?id=400

it appears repeated 4 times in the kata in 4 directions....the curious thing is that all 4 times are with the same side! (left kick, rising right, left punch). weird.

but whichever way you choose to interpret those movements...I'm right-handed and feel more comfortable striking with my right and guarding with my left. thats opposite from kata.

do I care that people here wouldn't train both sides to that since it's not shown in kata? nope.
but the answers were quite interesting.

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#306206 - 12/07/06 01:21 PM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5823
Loc: USA
Really good analysis going on here!

Good reads--thanks.

I always felt that the "reason" many kata favor one side--usually the right--is because most PEOPLE, favor one side, usually the right.

Certainly you want to train both sides--being able to use both is a real advantage, but for most people there will always be a "stronger" side.
_________________________
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

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#306207 - 12/07/06 02:05 PM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
Ed, I think you will find your answer in what both Victor and CXT posted. One the kata were probably created by either people who favored their right. There may even be a kata which favors the left, but many kata will have one side that is favored to some degree. Why? Because the person who created it probably had a strong side and favored it when fighting. That is a good thing. It is better to use your strong side than your weak side. I would rather have one side that I am GREAT with than two sides I am GOOD with. In fighting the only real strength of getting good with your weak side is to change timing and throw your opponent off by switching sides. However, your strong side will remain your bread and butter. Now, when teaching a large class the Gendai way it is hard to give the proper individual attention necessary to address individual strengths and weaknesses. If your strengths do not fit in with what is taught you are out of luck. However, this is not the way of classical karate. Its really very simple. If your strong side is the opposite side then work that side. Its not about only doing what is shown in kata, its about working to your strengths and filling in holes. You don't want your weakness to become a liability, however, you don't want to take too much time away from fully developing your strength. I think you are overthinking this. Okinawan karate is very simple and is about what is most natural. It becomes complex when we lose sight of that and try to make things fit like the whole there is no grappling in kata so I cannot use this stuff for grappling. If it feels most natural to grab a guy when drilling kata application then do it. Then go learn how to do it right and your kata will come alive. Same with wondering which side is the right side. If it feels better to use the other side then use the other side. I don't know how it could be any more simple. Another example is if your left punch is extremely weak would you be comfortable entering a fight with such a weakness. If the answer is not then develop that side. If the answer is yes then more power to you.

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#306208 - 12/07/06 04:07 PM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: medulanet]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
often on the forum I'm asking rhetorical questions to spark conversation, not questions (necessarily) born from confusion. training couldn't be more simple and literally one-on-one since instruction can be demonstrated and taught on either or both sides. it's recommended to train and be able to pull techniques off on both sides without thinking. doesn't seem like an earth-shattering concept, yet people are speaking as if it's a waste of time or 'gendai training method'. I'd say only training the kata-side is gendai. no evidence for sure either way of how classical kata was taught and trained, so it's opinion.

ironic you say I'm 'overthinking' it - I thought that was the point of this medium of 'supplimentary training' ...cerebrialize now on a forum if we want, if not then why even bother chatting about anything - just train. but since we ARE participating on a forum, why bother stating not to think too much? couldn't I equally accuse you of not thinking enough?

Nothing written here changes what I do and learn in class. I was just wondering if others considered both sides to principles they extract from kata and 2-person drill. doesn't sound like many do and I guess I'm kindof surprized by that.

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#306209 - 12/07/06 10:05 PM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Ed_Morris]
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
Acutally I don't think its that people don't train it that way or consider utilizing both sides. I personally never thought about only training one side because it only occurs on one side in kata or having a pressing need to get both sides up to the same level. I simply deal with attacks my opponent throws. Now if I notice a weakness that exposes a hole in my defense/offense I will certainly train it. But I have not pressing need to build up my left because my right is stronger. Maybe one of these days I will get around to it.

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#306210 - 12/07/06 10:06 PM Re: ambidextrous kata [Re: Victor Smith]
Ed_Morris Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 6772
I was at work when reading the replies so I inadvertantly missed the points you made of the progressive approach.

just so I understand, prior to advanced student training you instruct principles from kata into 2-person drills using both sides. then, as the student matures, you allow them more freedom to gradually develop side-bias as drills become more free-flowing. I can understand that.

I guess what thru me off is at the beginning of the thread:
Victor:
"It comes down to which is the better use of one's time in the long run. Getting so you are equally proficient with either side, or learning how to use what you have so the mirror image is irrelevant. "

shoshinkan:
"I think this concept is a modern interpretation based on budo concepts, rather than a functional combat art.

Thats not to say that if someone wants to train their bad side more than the good side its wrong, I just dont think we need to"

victor:
"I don't find that mirroring a kata inreases one's of your' sides abilites."

etc...
so maybe I wasn't getting the whole message when gears changed to elaborate into 2-person kata drills ARE in fact a good thing to work both sides...and gradually are relaxed to allow freedom for the student to capitolize on their strengths.

see what I mean? the arguments people initially put up against mirrored kata apps changed from a black and white opinion: basicaly stating "no, we dont waste time on non-kata sides" to morphing into "well actually, we do it but just for beginner ranks"

I suspect most don't bother with it, but are trying to give 'correct' answers. I believe as I was told one day: "if you can only get kata-side working, then it's only half as versitile." makes sense to me....particularly with fundamental principles that are only addressed on one side in a given form.

addressing medulanet's view - what I'm wondering is, lets say you develop a killer and lightning fast effective response to an attack coming from your left....are you saying even though that response you find to be very effective - you won't take the time to develop it on the other side, but instead would rather train a separate response? not saying it's good or bad, just different from the logic that I'm used to.

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