Goju Ryu Okinawa Karate Doh Jundokan South Africa

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

Kihon Kata Sanchin 

Body Alignment and Foot Movements PART 3

It must be remembered that the idea behind the discussion about posture has nothing to do with good form, but rather about the correct method of breathing. Although good form will result in effective breathing. The correct alignment of our head, neck, spine and hips directly influences our breathing. Therefore our breathing depends on good posture. If you are in a confined space and in a foetal position our breathing becomes erratic and more shallow, as opposed to when we are standing upright. When in sanchin dachi, the shoulders must not be lifted, the spine must be straight, your chest must be open and your stomach muscles must be tightened. Your chin must be drawn slightly towards your chest, this enables the wind pipe to be most effective when inhaling or exhaling. The gluteus maximus (buttocks) muscles must also be tightened, but do not make too much of the often seen exaggerated lifting of the pelvis. This lifting in itself causes the shoulders to cave in, thus again affecting the breathing. There should be no unnecessary restriction placed on the body, eg. hips not on the same plane as the ground (horizontal).

From musubi dachi no kamae, do not step forward in sanchin dachi, but rather simultaneously sink your body and slide your right foot in a circular fashion into migi sanchin dachi. Ensure that the heel of the front foot is in line with the toes of the rear foot. The width between the feet should be the width of your hips. Your toes should be gripping the floor by spreading the toes as far as possible and then grip the floor like the roots of a tree. This is known as tako ashi. Both feet should be turned inwards, and the knees must be bent directly over the toes. The knees, as in all stances, must be pointing in the same direction as the toes are. The eyes must be fixed firmly forward as if gazing at a far mountain. The chest must remain open so that breathing is not restricted.

When stepping forward in sanchin dachi, the feet never lift up off the floor. The movement must be of a sliding nature with the feeling that only one sheet of paper can slide between your soles and the floor. This movement is termed suri ashi. Keep your muscles tight when moving and use a circular sliding foot movement. Focus must always be placed on the heel when moving backwards in sanchin dachi. It must not lift off the floor - a common error! The muscles of the body must be tense during the entire duration of the kata and the breathing must be co-ordinated with all foot movements. Sometimes the mind will tend to drift off, actively keep it alive and stimulated and always keep your tanden full of strength. Do not rush in your practice and remember consistent practice, focusing on the above, will make your sanchin dachi a natural movement for you.

PART 1 : Introduction To Sanchin Kata

PART 2 : The Benefits of Sanchin Kata Training

PART 4 : The Breathing Methods

PART 5 : Shime Testing

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