Hian is a kata is from the Shito Ryu. It introduces the horse stance which is a basic strength training stance. It also uses muscle tension and then relaxation throughout the movements so the student comes to recognize the difference. It also introduces Ibuki breathing to develop increased lung capacity for endurance.
Here Heian is executed by first Dan, Sensei Ryan Smith.
Kata is a choreographed pattern of movements practiced to engrain the basic concepts and principals of karate and systematically pass those principles down from one generation to the next.
Practicing the kata in a repetitive manner, mentally focusing on the attack and defense (bunkai) of the moves allows the student to develop technique.
The goal of kata is to internalize the techniques so they can be used and adapted in different circumstances when they are needed, without hesitation or thought.
The Caledonia Martial Arts Academy teaches the traditional Wado Katas as passed down by Master Shintani. The order of the katas are as follows; Pinan Shodan, Pinan Nidan, Pinan Sandan, Pinan Yodan, Pinan Godan, Kushanku, Niafanchi, Seishan and Chinto. We also teach Hian as a preliminary kata.
Pinan Shodan in some systems is taught as Pinan Nidan.
We teach this kata first as it has the fewest number of techniques and the movements are more fundamental. The main principal is that of dropping energy. The techniques include basic stances, blocks and punches.
Here Pinan Shodan is executed by first Dan, Sensei Ethan Ashbaugh.
Pinan Nidan in some systems is taught as Pinan Shodan
This kata focuses on using the entire body to accelerate the techniques. The twisting of the hips is emphasized during the learning of this kata. This kata also introduces another stance as well as other punches, strikes, blocks and kicks.
Here Pinan Shodan is executed by second Dan, Sensei Ashley Mickus.
This kata also deals with hip rotation, but in a very different manner than that used in Nidan. It also introduces the idea of double blocking. More stances and strikes are introduced in this kata.
Here Pinan Sandan is executed by second Dan, Sensei Mike Zarycki.
This kata introduces open hand blocking. The opening moves are similar to those in Nidan but focus on the idea of sweeping blocks. This kata also teaches simultaneous blocking and kicking techniques
Here Pinan Yodan is executed by first Dan, Sensei Mark Varey.
This kata introduces entering and avoiding. Jumping is also introduced in this kata. This is the last of the Pinan katas and prepares the student to perform the more difficulty techniques in Kushanku.
Here Pinan Godan is executed by third Dan, Sensei Hadar Kaidar.
This kata is very old and is believed to have been brought to Okinawa by a Chinese official. The similarity to the Chinese system of martial arts is obvious in this kata. A variety of combinations are taught by this form. Jumping kicks as well as advanced blocking and striking are introduced. It is said that Master Yasutsune Itosu developed the Pinan Katas to prepare students to learn Kushanku
Here Kushanku is executed by second Dan, Sensei Emily Ashbaugh.
This kata focuses on the Naifanchi stance and quick hip rotations to accelerate the techniques. Niafanchi is a basic inner circle stance and this kata sets the groundwork for Seishan Kata.
Here Naifanchi is executed by third Dan, Sensei Julie Henning
This kata focus on the Seishan stance and complete body control. The first half of the kata is done using tension in all the large muscle groups. The second half of the kata is done with the muscle groups relaxed. Learning to tense and relax the muscles is an important aspect of karate.
Here Seishan is executed by third Dan, Sensei Steve Boyter.
Chinto is the last kata in the Wado system. This kata combines the speed and combinations of techniques in the manner of Kushanku with the core strength and body control developed in Seishan. This kata also introduces the crane stance to front kick combination.
Here Chinto is executed by third Dan, Sensei Craig Pettigrew.
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