Copyright 1997 by Buddy Govender.  Permission to use, copy and/or download any material from this site MUST be sought from the copyright holder.

 

Introduction to Goju Ryu Kata  Goju Ryu Okinawa Karate Doh Jundokan South Africa

"Kata is Karate-doh and Karate-doh is Kata" - Izukigawa Kanki The art of Karate-Doh is perpetuated by the continued practice and teaching of Kata.   Kata has been created by masters of old after years of research, training and experience in hand to hand combat. The Kata that we practice today has evolved through the masters commitment to improving and refining the forms that was taught to and by them.  History of Karate-doh is often traced by the history of the Kata.  The true meaning of and spirit of Karate-doh are found in the Kata and only through continuous practice of the Kata will we be open to understanding them.  We should NEVER change or simplify the Kata to suit our own needs as we would forever lose the true meaning and spirit of Karate-doh.

Practice should be broken down to isolate various sections of the Kata. These must be repeated over and over again, so that the movements are contained within your physical realm and become a reflex action.  Kata practice instil co-ordination, timing, balance, breath control and awareness.  Kata is excellent practice for defense against multiple opponent, not that the sequence of attacks will be as per the routine of the Kata, but it gives one a sense of awareness all around you instead in one direction and plain.

Kata practice is a lifetime of dedication under the guidance of a knowledgeable and authentic teacher. One can never completely learn Kata from books or tapes (although many are excellent guides) as there are many issues that can only be transmitted through a hands-on approach.

Always be prepared and open to watching as many people as possible practicing kata - no matter what style of Karate-Doh or Martial Art it is.  If it is the same kata that you practice then yours or theirs should be similar, however if you continue to find that the way you practice your version is distinctly different from the wide variety that you have watched, then you should endeavour to find out if you are practicing the kata correctly or differently. Remember, that differently may not be wrong, but wrong IS wrong!

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