March 15th, 2015
Sensei Kevin Raymond, Denshi-Shihan,
The following are some thoughts on kata training that I thought I would share so as to keep them top of mind.
On page 108 of the "Green Book" Hanshi Robert Scaglione wrote,
"Grand Master Ansei Ueshiro is known for his statement, 'Just do one kata ten times or more each day, that is all one needs.' One kata executed ten times even at slow motion speed is better than performing ten different kata on time each. Many kata one repetition or two repetitions is not nearly as productive as the repeat performance of one kata. The mind and body learn more through the developing reflex and muscle tone by the repetition of the same moves within one kata. The acquired skills are then easily transferred over to the other kata by the simple reasoning that it is the same body and mind performing and developing. As the body and mind further develop, the improved performance does not lessen or change from kata to kata. Perfect one kata and you have perfected all kata... One must change the imperfect habits through proper repetition and training. They will not change because of the movements of an individual kata. The change takes place in the individual person. Kata is the essence of karate. The gate to development has no lock, that is the key."
On page 25 of the 50th Anniversary Commemorative Journal, Hanshi passes down to us that the class should be 50% to 60 % kata practice and "while it is impossible to include every exercise in each class, we never compromise on the time or effort training kata".