Tag Archives: kata

Addressing self defence in martial arts training

Martial arts training can comprise aspects of self defence, but unless the art has been specifically devised for that purpose recently, it isn’t the same thing.

Why your kata should not look like your applications

In all of my books and videos there are deliberate differences between my kata and my paired application (oyo) that has resulted from my analysis (bunkai).

“Practicing a kata is one thing, engaging in a real fight is another.”

Gichin Funakoshi, Twenty Precepts

Kata is ice. Be like water my friend.

Kata, for most of us, is fixed. It is a set construct that we learn and rehearse. It does not vary very much. Over time different instructors have figuratively taken the same block of ice and carved away at some of the edges, added on smaller blocks, broken it down into lots of blocks and reassembled it in a different way, or taken chipped off elements from lots of different blocks to form a new block for others to replicate.

As a state of matter, ice is limited. It is strong, incredibly strong, but not adaptable. It can be cut to fit shapes, but then is limited to those shapes. It is limited to predictable fixed scenarios.

Malta Pinan Flow System Seminars

Sensei John delivered a remarkable seminar, leaving us with a deeper understanding of the 5 Shotokan Heian Kata. His knowledge on the subject is staggering, spanning some 25 years of training. His teaching method was structured and pleasant and kept all of us involved and interested throughout. It was a fantastic experience for all who took part.

The 2015 Review

So farewell 2015. It’s definitely been a Phoenix year for me, rising from the ashes of 2014, which I wrote about here. January 2015 began with me just starting on solid food again following on from a lingual tonsillectomy just before Christmas. The surgeon did an excellent job removing the tissue from my tongue, the […]

Three things that will revolutionise your karate

1. Treat each demonstration by an instructor as if it is the first time you have ever seen it. We look, but we fail to see, We listen, but we fail to hear. We observe, but we fail to understand. We’ve all done this and in many respects the longer we’ve been training the easier […]

Final Pinan Flow System book released!

Foreword by Iain Abernethy. ‘So here we are with the final volume of this series of books from John Titchen! You can now see John’s full interpretation of the Pinan series! How cool is that! Gichin Funakoshi – who is frequently referred to as “The Father of Modern Karate” – wrote the following in Karate-Do […]

Not seeing the wood for the trees

The techniques of karate kata have many possible interpretations. What each individual sees in the kata will vary according to their own experience and how skilled they are at identifying potential applications. Not every application taught need be practical. As a case in point in my Shotokan classes I teach a wrist grab defence using […]

KNX 15 – A unique experience

On the second weekend in August I travelled to Frankfurt along with other martial artists from around the globe to enjoy Jesse Enkamp’s second Karate Nerd Experience – KNX 15. Attendees and instructors came together from North and South America, Europe, Africa and Okinawa to share their enthusiasm and knowledge in the beautiful facilities of […]

2014: a review

So farewell 2014… At first glance it has not been a good year. On New Year’s Eve 2013 I cancelled my plans to go out because of a sore throat. A week later, while training with a visiting guest from Argentina, I felt tired, sloppy and without focus. A few days later still I was […]