SEIDOKAN KARATE & KOBUDO KATA
Kata is similar to shadow boxing, but in a set pattern. Or consider it like running an offensive play in football without the defense. Kata were designed to perpetuate the fighting techniques of the different masters of Karate's history. They are the means in which the specific techniques of a particular style are taught to students. Although, like the comparison to shadow boxing or football above, they can represent a contest against one or more imaginary opponents, they are even more than this; they symbolize a contest within oneself. They are the method of perfecting technique, unhampered by the many constant adjustments necessary in kumite, whereby the ideal of kata is brought into the reality of combat. The following is a list of all the official Seidokan kata, both empty handed and weapons kata. Some Seidokan instructors introduce the Taikyoku kata for beginners, and while not listed specifically, Sanchin kata is practiced, as well. Also, while not officially part of the Seidokan syllabus, some instructors introduce other Shorin ryu kata into their teaching to broaden the students' overall understanding of karate.
5. PIÑAN SHODAN
6. PIÑAN NIDAN
7. PIÑAN SANDAN
8. PIÑAN YONDAN
9. PIÑAN GODAN
11. PASSAI SHO
15. KIHON BO (Basic Wooden Staff Kata)
16. TOKUMINE NO KUN (BO)
17. KIHON SAI(Basic Short Trident Kata)
18. KIHON TONFA (Basic Mill Handle Kata)
19. KIHON KAMA (Basic Sickle Kata)
20. Iai Kata (Long Sword Kata)
The weapons kata of Seidokan are taught starting at black belt level, one weapon per grade up until fifth dan. There are in fact, at least three kata per weapon which senior students are expected to learn. These are not all taught at the Seidokan, however , rather the seniors are expected to travel elsewhere to learn them. Odo Sensei of Okinawa Kempo and Kobudo is often recommended as an excellent source for supplementary kobudo (weapon arts) instruction. Many Seidokan members in the USA receive training from IKKF founder and President C. Bruce Heilman, hanchi, 9th dan in Okinawan Kempo and Kobudo, formerly of Odo sensei's organization in Okinawa. Matayoshi Kobudo and the Yamanni Ryu (school) are also excellent kobudo organizations. Regardless of the source, the Kobudo training is an important adjunct to the empty hand kata, and the five basic weapons forms of Seidokan establish a solid foundation in introducing the basic techniques of each Okinawan weapon.
Included here in the Kata section are the first, and the last two empty handed kata of Seidokan. they are the foundation of Seidokan's techniques, and the ones Master Toma personally favors in his daily practice. For this reason they are chosen here as exemplar of the Seidokan system. Any errors in their performance are purely that of the demonstrator, who will be constantly seeking improvement himself as he returns to train with Master Toma and Tamaei Sensei on the never ending quest for self improvement and karate skill.
- Written by Eddy Schumacher
SEIDOKAN KARATE & KOBUDO KATA