Do you think kata is helpful in learning to fight?

Kata, on the surface, looks often outdated and unimportant. But, several styles still have it like: Kung Fu, Karate, Tae Kwon Do, etc.

Should kata be thrown out for something more modern?

Is it still relevant? Was it ever relevant?

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12 Responses to Do you think kata is helpful in learning to fight?

  1. jinglehimer36 says:

    It helps in getting mentally prepared to fight more than anything. .

  2. Raging Patriot says:

    “Do you think kata is helpful in learning to fight?”

    No.

  3. MAN your man could smell like says:

    Yes. It teaches fluid movement. It stresses basics, everything is built on basics. You can’t replace basics. Anyone who believes it isn’t relevant might get good at technique but will not be good at putting them together, you can easily see that with a lot of fighters who try to study a lot of different arts very fast and skip over basics for exercises. They can do it, but they can’t put it together. I’ve seen it over and over again.

    EDIT: My answer has only touched on the sparring/training side, I didn’t go into the philosophy part of it.

  4. Navid Omidi says:

    Each kata has useful moves and practicing a kata a in the right way can make you react spontaneously. But if you want to learn how to fight you have to do a lot more than just katas.

  5. JackDiego says:

    Did you talk before ga ga gooing? Could you go to college before high school? Did you drive at the brickyard before getting your license? If yes then your progression was painfully slow after, because you thought it stuupid to learn from someone that couldn’t do what you did. But you stale-mated for a long time until you learned to learn. Anyone can fight, but few can master it. GO ahead and fight without learning to master yourself and your processes will be painful, unless you are a master without boundary. Any martialist (not a martial artist, rather a fighter mentality) will know that they are much improved with learning, and teaching, a discipline. I know i have learned this.

  6. Aaron R says:

    yes it is relevant it is helpful the problem is understanding it and performing it correctly

    it helps develop muscle memory and helps you mentally stay focused

    it also is a useful way to keep your art fresh in your mind at times when you do not necessarily have training partners

    kata has a place it always will but I will say it again you have to understand the practical application of the movements and you should perform them as if you are actually doing the techniques on an opponent

  7. nwohioguy says:

    Yes it is very helpful. Any one who claims different has one of the following problems:

    1. They never were taught properly or learned in some mcdojo.
    2. They never truly studied a real martial art to a high enough understanding to comment on this post.
    3. They do not understand that anytime you train a series of combinations you are studying Kata.
    4. They are just an idiot period with no real martial arts training or bad martial arts training.
    5. They are an MMA fanboy.

  8. SofRage93 says:

    The most important part of learning to fight is actually fighting and doing the event. That cannot be argued.

    There are things in real combat that you cannot learn unless you have a partner. For example, a Kata or Tao Lu may contain a takedown application, but if you never actually grapple with a resisting human being, you won’t be able to know where to place your weight and how to respond to change.

    Kata/Tao Lu/Forms are only a useful tool when they are used accordingly and taught the way they were meant to. If your teacher doesn’t know the meaning of the movements and doesn’t drill them separately outside the form then they really don’t mean much.
    Forms are supposed to contain the CONCEPTS and the method of combat the style emphasizes. They are not supposed to be step-by-step how to interpretations of how to fight.

    In traditional martial arts, the goal is to have the mechanics and thought process so thoroughly permeate your natural movement that anything you do in a fight will be in accordance with the style. You do not have to perform moves directly out of the form.

    Conversely, even forms of martial arts such as Muay Thai and Boxing still have shadow boxing, which is much the same line as Kata or Forms. But ask a boxer or a Muay Thai person if you can make it on just shadowboxing alone. There’s always something to be said for refining technique, but if you place too much emphasis on the perfect technique without ever testing yourself for real or fighting, you will never get beyond performing the moves. Even the most traditional martial artists knew this in times past.

  9. Integrated Self Defense Services says:

    It depends.

    The kneejerk reactions go either yes or no.

    Kata is essential for learning how to fight if you are going to use the techniques of a particular style. Kata trains the body to learn how to perform techniques and then trains them into muscle memory and reflex.

    Kata is not useful or needed for styles that use very simple techniques and that use drills as the method of building up muscle memory. Boxing, for example, does not need kata. However, I would argue the shadowboxing combo drills are just a form of kata since they perform the same purpose.

    The answers vary according to the experiences of the people answering. Those who trained with kata and have found it useful in fighting say yes. Those that fight without training in kata say no. Those who don’t know repeat what they hear from some one they believe knows what they are talking about.

    Is kata necessary? No, not if you avoid using any complex techniques.
    Is Kata helpful? Yes.

  10. Shihan J says:

    forms, kata or prones which every you may call them, are one of the most important parts in your style, since they are your style, everything your style is are lock inside of kata, without it you don’t have the style. Everything you need for sparing is also in your kata
    Kata at its core teaches the following
    Technique
    Tactics
    Kokyu (breathe control)
    Kaeshu (reversals)
    Atemi (vital strike to vital area)
    Kyusho (pressure point strikes)
    Kensetsu (bone or joint bending)
    Appaku (applied pressure)
    Kotekitai (absorbing and controlling pain)
    Nage (throwing)
    Chime (choking)

    kata is not that simple,
    it takes years to understand the simplest kata, there are different levels of studying bunkai, it can be anywhere from a basic understanding to a very advance one. and its not always a block or punch, take the kata tekki (naihanchin) this kata is all grappling moves with few strikes.
    each kata has a number of interpretations some depend on your level of understand and others very from teach or style. there is no one answer for what the bunkai is.

    bunkai is equally important Without bunkai kata is meaningless, there are several levels of bunkai

    i had just ask a question about kata vs kumite, about a week ago. there are some great answer in there as well.

    http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=AkfzbfGUuHUCvOMWrdwVILvsy6IX;_ylv=3?qid=20100720071002AAj3SCD
    http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=AvU.hDuzEWFF1G6UXRpKECLsy6IX;_ylv=3?qid=20100421133203AAyjiPb
    http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=Ar5PJapPq4jR29rrxkXl6Nnty6IX;_ylv=3?qid=20090916105101AAfWjAN

  11. Dr.feel me says:

    kata teaches you techniques not how to fight ,great question for a 2 yr old!

  12. Sensei Scandal says:

    Kata IS Life Protection – not fighting.

    Fighting is a struggle.

    Martial arts facilitates survival and longevity. It is not about struggling. It is about your body acting naturally but skillfully to hostility.

    MMA is fighting.

    Martial arts is nature.

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