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Kata - Training Patterns

Kata is what best represents the style of Karatedo. Each Ryu-ha (style) has its own kata or pre-arranged patterns which demonstrate movement, tactics, defensive techniques and offensive techniques. The kata are highly definitive of the style they represent, and must clearly show the basic techniques of that style. The Gojukai has twelve kata in its curriculum. They are broken down into the categories Fukyugata and Kaishugata

In the Gojukai, Fukyugata include;

  • Sanchin,
  • Tensho,
  • Taikyoku Jodan I and II,
  • Taikyoku Chudan I and II,
  • Taikyoku Gedan I and II,
  • Taikyoku Kake-uke I and II,
  • Taikyoku Mawashi-uke I and II,
  • Gekki-sai Dai Ichi,
  • Gekki-sai Dai Ni

Sanchin, Tensho and the Taikyoku series of kata can also be considered Kihon Kata as they demonstrate the most basic movements of Goju-Ryu. They are practiced by students at all levels of training.

Kaishugata are the oldest kata in Goju-Ryu. They are;

  • Saifa,
  • Seienchin,
  • Sanseiru,
  • Shisochin,
  • Seisan,
  • Seipai,
  • Kururunfa,
  • Suparinpei

Each of the Kata in Goju-Ryu have a purpose for practice. For example, the main emphasis of the kata Saifa is a sharp snapping movement, as well as developing good posture and balance. Therefore, this kata is an important one for students to make the transition from being a novice student to an intermediate level of practice. To contrast this, kata Seienchin contains many slow powerful defensive and grappling techniques that are contrasted directly with lightning fast striking techniques, and contains no kicks at all. Taught to intermediate level students right after they have gained proficiency of Saifa, it helps to develop a solid, rooted feeling in their movements, while still being able to strike quickly with more advanced techniques. It is also reminiscent of Goju-Ryu's ancestry, coming from a background of fishermen who would have had no practical necessity for kicking, but who would have placed great value on strong, well balanced stances and techniques.

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