Shotokan karate katas is a form of karate conceptualized by Gichin Funakoshi from Okinawa, Japan, and has grown to promote the development of many university karate clubs that use kata which is a formal karate exercise emulating defense against an imaginary opponent. Shotokan means pine-waves that reflect pine needle movements when blown by the wind. It is the pen name used by Funakoshi in his philosophy writings and teaching to his karate students. He developed exercise movements which he simply calls karate moves.
Kata refers to the patterns and forms karate moves developed by Funakoshi. There are about 26 katas and each one is designed to produce particular movements, stances, techniques and fighting strategies. These movements are done as if you are engaged in a real fight. Shotokan karate katas are executed with spontaneity. The karate moves involves blocking and attack movements. This can harness a fighting spirit among those who are engaged in the imaginary fight. Those training for Sotokan karate learn to develop stability and powerful movements.
Shotokan karate katas training involves three stages of learning. These are the basic (kihon), forms of movement patterns (kata) and sparring (kumite). The first two stages are designed to develop and improve stability and stance, powerful movements and strengthening. From slow flowing movements, you progresses to the stage of sparring to learn more fluid karate movements involving grappling and aikido-like techniques with better speed and efficiency.
Shotokan karate katas is based on twenty principles. These principles are founded to improve the being of a person with one of humility, patience, respect, calmness and compassion. Many academies offer Shotokan karate katas training. Simulated karate movements are taught in the academy with varieties of katas demonstrated to ward off multiple attackers through pre-set movements. Learning Shotokan karate is a good training for self-defense and learning fighting techniques with discipline.
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