I wanted to show you some video of the World Karate Tournament kata competition.
With all the trends in martial arts training going towards a more practical approach, the role of traditional kata has been greatly diminished.
Originally the kata were devised as a medium of passing along the information within a style in increasingly difficult formats. Learning the kata was supposed to teach you the martial art, and combined with other, more practical training, would make you an accomplished martial artist.
The problem was that many people took kata training to be the end all be all of martial arts. They assumed that being good at doing the kata was supposed to make you a good fighter.
This is not the case of course.
Still, that doesn’t disqualify kata as essential training in traditional martial arts. It is there to communicate spirit, form, technique, alignment, stamina, concentration and focus. It is a superb, although not complete, teaching method.
Here’s the final of the female form competition at the World Championship, just so you can see some outstanding examples.
Notice the power and precision of the movements and imagine the hours of practice this took. Enjoy!