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#389574 - 07/24/08 06:21 AM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: Ed_Morris]
Yudansha34 Offline

Registered: 07/24/08
Posts: 4
Loc: Michigan

Does kata contain the body mechanics necessary to specifically illustrate full-body grappling principles? no. how do we know that? there are no karate kata which contain principles which can only be interpreted as on the ground-specific technique. how do we know that? there are no karate kata with a performers body touching the ground. for instance: you won't see principles in kata which could only be interpreted as defense against someone taking the top mount:

You will notice in the first few combinations in the video by the original poster demonstrates a choke from the bottom guard position. Pay close attention to the footwork and leg positioning along with the hand sweep and pulling of the head.

Naihanchi Shodan demonstrates these techniques from a standing position. Watch the footwork, cross over, open hips and then cross back... its the same principle as the guard choke in the original posters video. Then take a look at the arm sweep and head pressure... compare that to the knife hand block/empi and chamber postions. Again the dynamics at work are the same.

This is just one example of ground fighting bunkai within the naihanchi kata. There are other applications like elbow strikes from the bottom position, joint locks, and sweeps from a mounted postion etc etc.

For those that may be unfamiliar with the kata here is an example on youtube.

I hope this helps illustrate some bunkai in kata beyond the block/kick/punch and trap/sweep/pin level. Though my knowledge is limited to my experience and Im sure this is nothing new to many. And there are others with far more understanding then I that could expand upon this area.

#389575 - 07/24/08 07:04 AM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: Yudansha34]
Shonuff Offline

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 604
Loc: London, UK
Hello Yudansha34

There are a number of issues I personally have with interpretations like the one you've given, though I'm sure the thread as a whole gives a clearer picture of what is wrong with ground interpretations of kata than I could alone.

The thing that I will say though is that "simple" block punch and take down interpretations of kata, in fact stand up fighting in general is a far more deep and complicated game than I think most people realize. For myself I know that there is so much for me to develop while standing that ground work would simply slow my progress.

Now we all know beyond a shadow of a doubt that one can choose to see ground applications in kata, but if it were the intention to create a kata to train ground fighting, why would the form simply not be done from kneeling or laying?
It's Shotokan not Shoto-can't!!!

#389576 - 07/26/08 01:16 AM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: Shonuff]
cxt Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/11/03
Posts: 5844
Loc: USA

I get what your saying......and I agree.

But for the sake of discussion, the answser to your question MIGHT be:

"multiple application of similar movement"

You don't do it kneeling for the simple reason that application is several rungs down the ladder.
You might very well do it kneeling if your were working that section and that specific application.

Application 1--I grab his arm and punch him dead in the face.

Application 2- I deflect his arm and lock it up in an armbar then punch him in the side of the head.

Application 3- He has taken me down so now I do "X"

Speaking in general of course.

There is a tecnique in Saifa that is a really good (so far ) defense vs a single leg takedown.
However the first application I was shown was a simple postional movement then a simple stike.
The NEXT application assumed that the strike didn't work and some grappling was that case THAT section of the bunkai is working from a nearly ground position.

AGAIN, different kata entirely.

If I had to guess that would be at least one resonable assumption.

One way to teach new movements is to work with a pre-exsiting set of already ingrained know, they are already doing "X" so you teach them to do "Y" on the FRAMEWORK of "X."

I recall reading a story (quite some time ago) about a actress that was supposed to play a sword swinging heroine in a movie...lady had never touched a sword in her life--didn't have the movements of a swordsperson--but she was an accompished the stunt guy found a number of dance steps that was pretty close to generic sword footwork and hung her training around that....worked pretty well.

A better example was a guy that used to train with us....guy had spent years learning to box---he learned the stances and could do them well--but anytime things got fast and tense he reverted back to his orignal stances, posture and footwork-----so instead of trying to "re-wire" the guy the teacher simply taught him a seperate set of applications for his use around his former training and already ingrained habits.

NOT saying that is the case here...just specualtion on my part.
I did battle with ignorance today.......and ignorance won. Huey.

#389577 - 07/26/08 01:57 PM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: cxt]
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
CXT, if my experience is similar to yours, your signature battle is about to start anytime now. The mere suggestion of certain things here is apparently not taken so well.
Dulaney Dojo

#389578 - 07/26/08 04:34 PM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: medulanet]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Marcel -

Still playing the victim, I see.

Suggestions are taken fairly well here, in my experience. Arrogance and condescension, less so. Most people here agree that kata can have many applications, limited only by one's imagination. This is not a bad thing, IMHO. However, that is fundamentally different from saying that certain applications were *always* part of kata, especially when the weight of historical evidence does not seem to support them.

*You* have, in your ever-shifting arguments, made claims that were (generally agreed) not well supported. And then derided others that disgreed, questioning both their skill and intellect. That has caused some things you have said here to be "not taken so well".

So please don't act the victim, when you have been throwing stones.

Again, most here agree that kata *can* have many applications, including grappling, ground stuff, etc. Not the argument.
"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin

#389579 - 07/26/08 05:35 PM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: MattJ]
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
And obviously EVERYONE who writes condescendingly and arrogantly is equally ridiculed. Don't be so quick to believe your own hype. In fact, I could (and have) written several posts on the grappling applications in kata without mentioning their historical relavance, in fact, I will.
Dulaney Dojo

#389580 - 07/26/08 05:37 PM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: medulanet]
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
So, where does the ground fighting come in? Well, a few ways really. First off if you are getting beat down in the striking department and cannot escape. Second if you have entered into close range fighting and damaged you opponent with strikes then it is time to put him down (if he has not already fallen). In these senarios you put him down with a throw or takedown in order to obtain a knee ride and hit him so he won't get back up. If he tries to entangle your arms utilize an arm bar or shoulder lock (not the kind where you are lying on the ground with him, but where you are either standing above or kneeling on your opponent). Use these to break a joint or open up things like kicks, stomps, or strikes to the downed opponent. Now, there may be a time where you may need to hold the opponent in place, either when on top or while on bottom. This is accomplished with the stacked hands position. Remember, this position is one of the dead givaways in kata that mucho grappling is occuring. It is simply an underhook with the other hand behind the neck of your opponent. This is used in ALL positions. For many different grappling applications. Now, if you get taken down by an opponent you use underhooks in all positions to work to your feet except if the opponent has not passed your legs. In karate hooking under the arm and controlling the head is used for control in a variety of situations. In the case where the opponent has not passed your legs you hand fight until you get control of the hands/wrists until you can scoot your hips out to get up. That is where all of the wrist locks, releases, and such come into play. I have always heard people ask when an attacker will actually grab your wrists. Its not standing when the are trying to punch you or grab you. It is usually on the ground. Shifting and switching of the hips, crossing of the legs, etc. is all good training to develop strength and dexterity so you can manuveur in all situations. Shorin Ryu karate is about motion. The motion does not stop if you hit the ground. You have to be able to move in all situations.

I assume since I have not said anything about karate's historical link to grappling I will get different types of responses from the usual suspects around here. If not, then I guess I should change my name to Keyser Söze.
Dulaney Dojo

#389581 - 07/26/08 08:50 PM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: medulanet]
Christy Offline

Registered: 07/04/08
Posts: 61
Loc: The D
Hi Marcel,

You remind me of John Turturo's character in The Big Lebowski.

#389582 - 07/26/08 08:53 PM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: medulanet]
debushi Offline

Registered: 07/23/08
Posts: 11
Karate is an art of moderation, except in finishing the confrontation. It covers all ranges with an emphasis on remaining standing . There are throws, locks, trips, sweeps, kazushi, restraints, pins and submission moves. Whether you learned your karate this way or not makes all the difference in interpretation. If you do modern sport karate, then you'll learn zilch in the way of Okinawan "groundfighting".

Arguing about the depth of "groundfighting" in karate is like arguing about the depth of strikes and other standing techniques in Kodokan Judo or GJJ/BJJ. It's just not in context. The focus of the former is staying on your feet for the street. The main focus of the others is to show supremacy in a more controlled combative scenario. At least it would seem that way.

Karate is for self-preservation, and to be used only when needed. Judo and BJJ go looking for fights, so to speak, yet the fights are often in a ring or cage, or on a mat, with referees and few unknown quantities.

FYI, so you'll stop this senseless and often uninformed argument, Goshin Jutsu of the Kodokan contains more standing techs as does the Self Defense of Gracie Jiu-Jutsu. Trying to tire your opponent out from the guard is not the aim of Gracie SD. The two person drills practiced in that aspect of "BJJ" contain a more decisive, street-minded intent. It's a lot faster in execution.

If you don't do Kodokan Judo up to the higher levels or do a style of BJJ outside GJJ you will never understand the difference between the sportive and SD aspects of GJJ. So if you don't know these facts or haven't trained in the more well-rounded Gracie system your BJJ might have half the intent.

Get it straight people before you spout what you don't know about. I agree (more) with Medulanet, btw...

#389583 - 07/27/08 06:35 AM Re: No Grappling In Kata - Enter into Grappling [Re: medulanet]
Shonuff Offline

Registered: 11/03/04
Posts: 604
Loc: London, UK

Well put. I don't quite believe it because I don't really believe that applications were hugely layered into kata. I think that a few generations after each kata was created the culture of Okinawan teachers was to teach very few applications and let students come up with what they would, but I think when they were designed the kata techniques had mostly singular purposes.

That said it is a pretty logical counter argument and one which could be true.

Med, a warrior like you shouldn't whine about the slings and arrows of detractors and foes.

However now you've taken the time to clearly explain yourself in a single post, I think I understand where you are coming from.

The kind of ground fighting you feel is in Karate kata I think is what the rest of us would call ground pins or restraints and are the follow on from the takedowns.
I that in regards to ground fighting once you have been taken down and are on your back, you are communicating the need to adapt the stand-up grappling of Karate to the situation.
Thus if I am correct your argument is that fighters have always adapted what they have to the environment of a fight so Karateka have always adapted kata grappling techniques for ground work and so by reworking the standing grappling you have in ground fighting drills you are mearly continuing an older tradition.

Personally I have no problem with that. I don't necessarily think that Karateka would have ever needed to adapt to ground battles as I think in older times fighters who hit the floor would just try to get up first because fighting on the ground is just too tacticaly unsound and I don't think ground grapling arts or strategies were common place. I also feel that the ground was never a range that was trained for by karateka as non of that kind of training seems to have been passed on to us (you yourself train in other arts for your drills etc), and I think that any such adaptation was done on the fly and never focussed on. Just my opinion though.

If my interpretation of your viewpoint is correct then I'd just like to point out that with the exception of the ground pind which we can all agree on (I think) this is different from your original contention that ground fighting was always in Karate kata. What I believe you to say above is that Karateka have always adapted their kata techniques to work on the ground if they had to. What I think your original contention was that folks argued with, was that kata has always contained techniques for specific application on the ground and the art of karate has always contained training for ground fighting. Now whether you meant to or not the image people have when someone says ground fighting is BJJ, not pins and restraints.

I cannot agree that the kata we practice were designed with any kind of prolonged tactical ground work in them, or that the art of karate has always contained drills for using kata on the ground in a BJJ-like manner.
I can agree that they contain stand-up grappling including pins and restraints and that these can be adapted for use on the ground.

Good post though.
It's Shotokan not Shoto-can't!!!

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