During my years on the world wide web, I have collected a fair amount of stuff related to the Martial Arts.
The gigabytes on my hard drive dedicated to Karate and Kobudo history, pictures, videos, quotes, essays, and notes are quite scary, actually.
So for this post, I thought it would be nice to share some (unusual) quotes I have found, from various masters on the subject. I will not comment too much, because I think quotes speak for themselves.
Here we go:
“Since these kata [referring to the 3 Tekki/Naihanchi] are rather monotonous, turn the head briskly and strongly.”
– Nakayama Masatoshi, “Best Karate” vol. 5
Imagine a kata so boring (monotonous) that you think students must turn
their heads “briskly and strongly” to keep from falling asleep!
“If one slaps their hands together quickly, it could compel the opponent to throw an uncoordinated and unbalanced kick.”
– Nakayama Masatoshi, “Best Karate”-series (Unsu, Sochin & Nijushiho)
Next time you are fighting someone, and you sense that the opponent is going to kick you, please “slap your hands together quickly”, and e-mail me if the opponent missed his attack.
“Seisan plays a special role in the history of Karate. It emphasizes the often
forgotten and underestimated role of women in karate. The self-defence
techniques for mothers who carry their babies/children on their back, show that
women at least practiced, if not even developed some of the kata. That’s why
Seisan is known as a kata for women.”
– Jamal Mearsra “Karate no Reishiki” (History of Karate).
Do I really need to comment?
“I think maybe he [Funakoshi] changed his ideas for the judo person because judo is always pushing and throwing and I think maybe he changed the original karate a little bit for the judoka, usually it is the Neko Ashi Dachi stance but he changed it to Kokutsu Dachi, it’s good for the judo push. So he must have changed the kata to help the judo man adapt.”
– “Traditional Karate”, interview with Koei Nohara.
Ooh, so that’s why…
About Naihanchin-kata: “Something ‘deep’ about it… has three katas, Shodan, Nidan & Sandan but the last two are ALMOST USELESS [emphasis added]”
– Otsuka Hironori, “Wado Ryu Karate”, 1977 (p. 72)
I think we just got the explanation for the lack of Naihanchin Nidan and Sandan in Wado?
About the foot-sweep in Naihanchin: “This movement is NOT a foot sweep […] varation of stance […] objective is to see if there is too much strenght being placed in the leg itself.”
– Otsuka Hironori, “Wado Ryu Karate”, 1977 (p. 253)
We have been fooled! It’s not a sweep! Not even a kick, or a block with the shin.
It’s a balance test!
Okay, that’s it for today!
More quotes to come.