Category Archives: All-But-Events

Video: Kata Koshiki Bassai

Kata Koshiki Bassai is the original form of the more commonly known name of Kata Bassai. Most styles of Karate practice a modified form of the Kata known as Bassai-Dai. However, for Shorinjiryu the Koshiki form of the Kata is the standard form to be practiced. The kata is typically taught at the Ni-kyu or Ichi-kyu level (brown belt) and is considered an intermediate level kata from a difficulty persepctive. Bassai it its various forms is known and practiced in most karate styles and as such it is also considered a foundational kata. Since it is well-known across various styles of karatedo it is a useful kata to demonstrate within open competition formats.

Below one can see the application (known as “Bunkai”) of Kata Koshiki Bassai. The Bunkai is performed by Shihans Riley, King and Chaffey in competition at the occasion of the Canadian World Koshiki Competition held in London, Ontario in the summer of 2017.

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Video: Kata Happiken

Kata Happiken is considered an intermediate level kata typically taught to green belt and brown belt practitioners. The kata was developed by Hanshi Hisataka specifically to assist North American karateka when he was in the United States circa 1964 through 1967. Hanshi Hisataka believed that the geometry and movements of Happiken were more suited to the western mind than those of other katas available at this level.

The kata name literally means “to use the fist like a monkey in 8 directions”. The kata is geared to close fighting situations as it uses a great many elbow strikes and emphasizes strong postures and stances.

Video: Kata Saisan

Like Sanchin Kata, Seisan kata is aimed at developing footwork, strong stances, ki, and breath control. It is also an isometric body building form of exercise, however, the techniques displayed in Seisan are more advanced than in Sanchin. Its stances are wider and the postures are “half face front” (hanmai, body diagonal to the front).  Seisan kata has its originan in Shorinjiryu Kempo and was transformed by Kaiso Masayoshi Hisataka.

The first half of the Kata consists of strong stances, slow motions, and powerful techniques, while the second half emphasizes fast body motions and techniques. Kata Saisan is considered an advanced kata usually taught at the Sho-dan to San-dan levels.

7 New Pakistan Koshiki World Grand Prix

7 News Pakistan reported from onsite at the 2017 World Grand Prix Koshiki Tournament held in Shin-Urayasu in November 2017. The tournament was a great success as shown by the video.

Video: Super Safe Protective Gear Fighting System

Shorinjiryu Kenkokan is a full contact fighting system. In order to practice full contact a system of protective gear called SuperSafe was developed by So Shihan Masayuki Hisataka. The system allows the participants to execute full contact techniques to the body and head in a safe environment without injury. The video below shows the manner in which the Supersafe equipment is used. The video was filmed at the Shin-Urayasu dojo in Tokyo.

Video: Bunkai Kumite Bassai

Bunkai Kumite shows the hidden techniques within a kata. Movements that include unarmed techniques of strikes (goho) and locks (juho) as well as weapons application of the bo and katana (bukiho) are revealed. By its nature Bunkai kumite includes at least two players where one is the offensive player and one the defensive player. In team competition there are usually three players working together to show the inner workings of the kata. The offensive player(s) attacks the defensive player(s) with the kata movements in mind and the defensive player(s) uses the movements within the kata to determine an appropriate defensive response. The role of offense and defense may rotate between players so long as the movements of the kata are explored in sequence. Bunkai kumite is typically learned at the time when the underlying kata is well known and understood. The application of the Bunkai elevates the learning of the kata to a higher level and requires a more fluid understanding of the kata. In this respect Bunkai is typically practiced by intermediate to advanced students, however, the benefit of bunkai training can be obtained at any level with the proper instruction and guidance of a seasoned Sensei.

 

An example of Bunkai Kumite from the 2017 World Koshiki Tournament held in London, Ontario is shown below. Performing Bassai Bunkai is Shihan Andrew Riley, Kyoshi Nick King and Shihan Scott Chaffey. The trio won the gold medal for Bunkai. It was a great demonstration loved by the crowd.

Video: Renshu Ni Kumite

Renshu Kumite Ni is the second of two prearranged sequences (yakusoku randori kumite) developed by Hanshi Masayuki Kukan Hisataka to assist karatedo students to refine their favorite techniques into effective sequences utilizing both offensive and defensive strategies.

In fact, the two renshu kumite were created by Hanshi Hisataka in 1963, shortly after his arrival in New York, and stemmed from his observations after teaching classes of non-Japnese for the first time. He observed that, in general, western sports favored lateral motion over angular motion, and thus one of the prime aims of the renshu kumite ni is to emphasize angular motion.

An unique feature of the renshu kumite ni is that it was the first kumite created for the purpose of developing basic techniques used in competition. Prior to that time. kumite was the application of techniques from kata and the sankakutobi kumite. However, such application techniques were extremely intricate and more valuable in the development of real fighting strategies for life and death situations, as well as total physical, mental, and technical development. Renshu kumite ni (literally meaning kumite “practice”) is a scientifically developed fighting training method that can also serve as preparation for the higher level application kumite.

Renshu kumite ni emphasizes techniques of the rear hand and foot, as opposed to renshu kumite ichi, which emphasizes front hand and foot attacks. In addition, renshu kumite ni also emphasizes the succeeding step (tsugi ashi) and 45 degree angular motion. In effect, this implies escaping to the opponent’s blind spot and aids in deflecting the force of a direct attack. In this way, counterattacks are achieved in a circular motion. Accordingly, what commences as linear motion becomes angular motion, and finally, circular motion.

To practice renshu kumite ni, the karateka should bear in mind the intended target, the optimum technique, the manner of delivering that technique, the distance required to effectively deliver that technique, the timing required, and how to recover from the delivery. In this way, the karateka transcends mere technique and utilizes the three minds (mittsu no kokoro) of zenshin, tsushin and zanshin.

 

Video: Renshu Ichi Kumite

Both Renshu Kumite Ichi and Renshu Kumite Ni were developed by So Shihan Masayuki Hisataka in 1963 shortly after his arrival in New York and stemmed from his observation and teaching classes of non-Japanese for the first time. He observed that, in general, western sports favored lateral motion over angular motion and thus one of the prime aims of the Renshu Kumite Ni is to emphasize angular motion. The Renshu Kumite(s) contain most of the basic techniques and principles of Karatedo. Renshu Kumite Ichi emphasizes the use of the front hand and is recommended for 10th and 9th kyu students while Renshu Kumite Ni teaches the use of the back hand, and is recommended for 8th and 7th kyu students.

Video: Kata Nijushiho-Dai

The original name of this kata is “Niseishi” kata meaning “Twenty-four movements”. It was developed by Okinawan karate Masters and was designed both for empty-hand and weapon fighting. It has since been adapted by Shinan Kori Hisataka in Kenkokan Karatedo.

In fact, there are not twenty-four movements in Nijushiho. There is a second hidden meaning to this name. Nijushiho stresses combinations of two techniques and 24 could be interpreted as 2 and 4, implying that 2-techniques combinations are worth twice as much (4). This kind of double understanding was quite frequently used in naming kata.

In this kata one faces two opponents and learns diagonal and circular motions both to create an opening in the opponent’s guard and to evade his attacks. It emphasizes rapid foot movements such as neko ashi dachi and kosa ashi and flexible stances (cat stance).