Thought For The Week

Thought for the Week (December 1st, 2003)

From Mary McKitrick (Ik-Kyu Pine Forest Karate Dojo)

Waiting for the Count

In an orchestra the musicians are obliged to await their cues before
playing their parts. Independence is counterproductive in such a setting,
as it distracts the other performers, it is disrespectful to the conductor,
and it causes the symphony to fall apart. When one is performing kata,
independence is similarly pernicious. It may cause other karateka to lose
focus, and it is discourteous to the person responsible for the count (the
“conductor”). Each movement in a kata or kihon technique should be the
only one that exists at that moment, and in between, no skeletal muscles
should move except for those associated with respiration. The count
represents the opponent’s move, and only when it comes can we know what
move is required of us. To move too soon could be fatal.

Wait for the count.

Mary C. McKitrick, Ik-kyu
Pine Forest Karate Dojo
Northampton, MA