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PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 2:36 pm 
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Okey Dokey,

In Seiryu there are four moves, NSEW that are the same technique. Nekko-ashi dachi hirate mawashi uke morote boshiken zuki. Cat stance, flat hand dircle block double thumb knuckle strike.

This is the same move done in a pair at the end of Sanseiryu for you three kata fans.

So my question is, why bother with the cat stance if you're doing the same movement you do at the end of Sanchin after the double.

In this series of 4 little identical models - what does the cat stance represent to you? And why oh why does the Uechi family style of karate eschew the cat stance turn so common in other Okinawan karate styles?

The cat stance without a cat stance turn...hmmmm....

I've brought this up in the past and had folks mention that they teach the cat stance turn in Seichin because nobody will get their knickers in a twist over modifying one of the kyu kata over one of the dan kata. And just doing the turn doesn't mean you know what principle you're applying when you do it.

So the longer I look at this form and my own fighting the longer I wonder about the missing cat stance turn. Can you really represent the same principles in a sanchin turn?

So that's really my root question. By not having a cross-footed turn in Uechi form are we leaving out an important training principle?

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 2:47 pm 
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Dana,

Interesting. My student Seth_ works out with master Uehara in Japan_ and while he was here, he showed the turn you refer to in the kata if I am not mistaken.

So Uechi variations by different seniors will continue to drive modern practitioners 'nuts' _ imagine our style in another fifty years :wink:

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 16, 2005 3:10 pm 
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So here's a nice little article on another site:

http://www.fightingarts.com/reading/article.php?id=383

The cat stance represents a weight shift:

So - you're either shifting your weight to empty the leg to kick or you're shifting your weight because you are using it to disrupt the balance of your attacker. That can be in several ways:

1. You've grabbed onto something of theirs that you're using like a level to pull them off balance (jerking power)
2. you've set up a lock of some kind and you're dropping your weight to apply pressure to break/get pain compliance
3. You're doing both the above at the same time (personal favorite)
4. You're shifting yourself off the line of attack (by a very little bit or more depending on how much time you have and how much you move.

Now - here's where the cat stance turn comes in. Sometimes you want to jerk someone in a circular fashion instead of a linear one. This is one of the main principles of small circle ju-jitsu. You turn a smaller faster circle on the inside than they can do on the outside and so they lose.

So now you've got something that allows you to do four things at the same time if you're not just kicking:
use stepping and shifting to get off the line of attack, use the shifting your bodyweight to displace by jerking, use the shifting of your bodyweight to break/get pain compliance, use the twisting of the cat stance turn to double your jerking power by doing it in a circle.

The question remains - do you need to come to the twisted stance to get this done or can you do the same thing through the regular sanchin turn?

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2006 9:56 pm 
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Dana,

In your description of Seiru, you describe only one way in doing the kata. There are many ways of performing the move you describe. For example, I do not do, nor do I teach a bushiken strike at the end; however, I do practice the cat stance. I believe it is in our style, albeit a movement shown in transition.

<So my question is, why bother with the cat stance if you're doing the same movement you do at the end of Sanchin after the double. >

I'm not quite sure what you mean here. Could you explain?

<In this series of 4 little identical models - what does the cat stance represent to you? And why oh why does the Uechi family style of karate eschew the cat stance turn so common in other Okinawan karate styles? >

I'm not sure that they do. Kata is a wonderful tool to achieve the perfection of movement (yeah, like we'll get there); however, it's also a tool that means something different to everyone. What's wrong with doing a cat stance upon a miwate? Answer the question of what's the purpose of a miwate first and then move to see if what you are doing is so out of whack with the Uechi style.

<I've brought this up in the past and had folks mention that they teach the cat stance turn in Seichin because nobody will get their knickers in a twist over modifying one of the kyu kata over one of the dan kata. And just doing the turn doesn't mean you know what principle you're applying when you do it.>

I've sat on many a board test, and have competed and judged at many a tournament, and I'll tell you what. That cat stance in Seichin is as optional as performing itself. I honestly believe that it's a matter of dynamics in your kata. Slow the kata down and show the internal strength and position instead of rambling through. People who know how to demonstrate their kata right have a good grasp of the form.

<So the longer I look at this form and my own fighting the longer I wonder about the missing cat stance turn. Can you really represent the same principles in a sanchin turn? >

Is it "missing?" Why can't you show the same principals? It's the same thing!!

<So that's really my root question. By not having a cross-footed turn in Uechi form are we leaving out an important training principle?>

I don't believe in the cross-footed turn as you see in other arts such as Goju or Shorin, meaning I don't believe that's in our curriculum. I think you can perform the turn and end up in a cat stance without the aid of cross-stepping. Again, you have to ask yourself what the purpose of the turn is and they ask if you are achieving this with your method of turning.

mike


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2006 1:03 am 
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in the turn, when you cross your leg. I don't like any move where you cross arms or legs. I know it can be done fast, but not the same as the Uechi turn or Inside to out move with the arms.

Tomoyose taught me this concept and I pass it on to my students.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2006 3:35 pm 
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Yes - there is a moment of weakness when you cross your feet - but one of the main reasons to cross your feet is to turn a tighter circle that someone who's feet are uncrossed.

When I trained judo we would often quickly move through a "cross-footed" stance to get the throw. It wasn't a "stance" per se in that we spent time sitting in it - but to get off certain throws you ended up crossing your feet for an instant. Kata takes little instants and pulls them apart and makes them big and exploded like a mechanical drawing.

Quote:
I do not do, nor do I teach a bushiken strike at the end


I don't do one either and don't teach one. However this is the name of the technique. (And it is something demonstrated in the Okikukai Sanseiryu Bunkai)

"Hirate mawashi uke neko ashi dachi morote boshiken" is the name of the movement in Seiryu and Sanseiryu - the technique at the end of sanchin after the doubles strikes (the three step off and strike movements) are named "hirate mawashi uke morote boshiken"

So the same thing only with or without the cat stance. Of course I don't ascribe much to these names because they are Japanese names for movements that were learned with Chinese names. So they really don't matter.

But no matter how you do the movement in Seiryu it is my understanding that your hands end in the flat ready ready fight position (hirate kamae).

The sanchin turn doesn't dramatically shift your weight downward nor does it create the tightest circle possible for a human.

I'm not saying these are things that need to be done, I'm just saying that it is curious that Uechi uses a common stance (cat) without the common turn.

BTW Mike - I've enjoyed training lately with your former student Stanley. He's a really super guy.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2006 3:56 pm 
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Like Dana said. In Shotokai kata there are many instances where the feet are crossed but as far as I can remember it is to do a 180 degree change of direction. So in Bassai, the kata Marcus and I were discussing, you jump in whack the BG in front of you and then you have to deal with the BG coming up behind you without pause as quickly as possible or else. So crossing the feet may be the best thing given the circumstances.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 11, 2006 2:23 am 
I dont like crossing the feet(also crossing the arms past the centreline ) , I do think it occurs as reference to pivot , In bassai I do it closer to a reverse Nekoashi dachi .

The only kata I still cross feet in is Tekki/Naihanchi , ad I beleive in those its representive of stepping around behind ones opponent and you have there legs as a balance point .


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2006 1:37 am 
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Stryke wrote:
The only kata I still cross feet in is Tekki/Naihanchi , ad I beleive in those its representive of stepping around behind ones opponent and you have there legs as a balance point .


My understanding is that the stepping in Naihanchi is not a fighting technique, rather part of an integrated training exercise in balance, momentum, and power generation. The introduction of the Pinan kata (and, after the war, the two beginner forms) for Okinawan school children seems to have obscured the fact, but traditionally Naihanchi is the "Sanchin" of Shuri-te.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 08, 2006 10:30 pm 
yeah it is the styles original Sanchin type kata .

I dont buy the just for excercise bit Mike , heard it before , It fits better for me as symbolisim , like the usuall jumps are most often throws .

the old style Motobu application shots Ive seen , none of them utilise the cross legged position in application .

jus one of the many mysterys of kata :) , guess theyll debate this one longer than what a nukites for .


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2006 3:54 am 
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Stryke wrote:
I dont buy the just for excercise bit Mike , heard it before , It fits better for me as symbolisim , like the usuall jumps are most often throws .


I don't recall much jumping in Matsubayashi Ryu (other than the flying nidan-geri, which isn't symbolic of a throw), so I'll have to take your word on that example as it may apply to other styles. It's usually difficult to apply the word "just" when it comes to kata, anyway. Whatever it might be, it's not "just" anything.

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Last edited by mhosea on Sun Jul 09, 2006 6:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2006 5:16 am 
many ways to look at this stuff . Didnt mean just in the context you read it just I beleive all has application , theres always many options , it`s the beauty of good kata .

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2006 6:53 am 
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Stryke wrote:
just I beleive all has application


Maybe, but IMHO, the most important "application" of Naihanchi is to teach the body control that is required for the effective application of ALL Shuri-te techniques. It is "basic". Maybe there's a specific application for everything in it (in fact, I'm sure there's an application for most of it), but it would be icing on the cake.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 09, 2006 2:22 pm 
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about the turn:

Many of the subtle and not so subtle changes in Uechi-ryu occurred when Okinawa and Japan began to exchange karate knowledge. Most Okinawans wanted to protect their version of what (at the time) they believed to be a better system. Many younger Okinawans were impressed with what they saw in the Japanese "modernized" methods and began to introduce some of the "flashier" techniques into their Uechi-ryu.

I was at a meeting at Kanei Uechi sensei's dojo, where a Japanese sponsored film was being discussed. The Japanese team wanted to film all the Okinawa styles. However, the film was to be titled "Japanese Karate"!

Much of the discussion was focused on the preservation of Okinawan karate and how the group did not want their systems to be known as "Japanese Karate". Also discussed was the problem the seniors described as "watering down of the Uechi style by incorporating the growing trend in Japan where teachers were blending all styles into one. (Apparently at the time, Japan was trying to create a single "Japanese Karate, taking the best from all the individual Japanese & Okinawan methods.)

In visiting and/or working out with all the senior teachers of the era, I never saw the "crossed leg" turn taught. However, I did see students do this "crossed-leg" turn while performing "Seiryu". Since this kata is not one of the "big three", I'm assuming there was some influence from other sources.

For the record, Kanei Uechi taught the cat stance as movement of weight to the rear leg and raising the heel of the forward foot. (beginning in a sanchin stance) Turning consisted of placing the forward heel back on the floor while centering weight, then turning as usual.

The first time I saw the "crossed leg" turn in Sanchin was when "Hiro" Uechi (Tokyo Uechi dojo) trained with us at the "Hut" a few years ago.

At the Tomoyose's dojo in Wakiyama, kata was performed in a very "abbreviated" manner, with a "leaning" back at the waist, but the major moves were the same as what we practice today.

Based on what I've witnessed and experienced regarding our style, my feeling is that the Tokyo Uechi club "picked-up" some stylistic practices from other styles in the region, including the "crossed leg" turn in kata.

The Wakiyama dojo, being isolated from the other karate clubs, resulted in normal and difficult-to-prevent changes from creeping into physical movements, but retaining major and important style attributes.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 12:07 pm 
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[So my question is, why bother with the cat stance if you're doing the same movement you do at the end of Sanchin after the double.]

On a visit to Okinawa I trained with Sensei Takara and asked him what was the specific purpose in finishing the movement with a cat stance. Takara sensei demonstrated that this allowed you to spring forward at your opponent. A bit of a shock when a 78 year old suddenly leaps at you however this seemed to make sense and explain the reason why the hands are not retracted after performing the double blocks and why Uechi tends to put more weight in the front foot (in the cat stance) than other styles.


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