I’ve been pretty vocal about the uselessness of kata and forms, especially when they’re not combined with partner drills, pressure training and actual sparring.
And this has created a LOT of hurt feelings and pushback!
In fact the video I put on Youtube called “Why Kung Fu Forms and Karate Kata are (Mostly) Pretty Useless!” has about one dislike for every 3 likes, which might be a new record for me.
This video was forwarded on to Iain Abernathy, an expert in the application of Karate Kata (aka ‘Bunkai”) by his friends and followers in hopes that he would debunk it. So when I hit him up to be a guest on The Strenuous Life Podcast he graciously agreed.
On the podcast we talked about about kata as a training method, techniques advancing over time, ancient martial arts training methods, the reason for “freezing” between moves in kata, pushback from the traditional karate community, drills to make the application of moves instinctive, and more.
Turns out that we agree on a LOT more than we disagree on.
I really enjoyed it and I hope you do too!
Go grab episode 169 with Iain on the podcast player that you almost certainly already have on your phone, and it’s 100% free.
For example, if you have an iPhone then it’s the purple app with the antenna-like thing in it; just click the Apple Podcasts link below to go to the right place and hit ‘subscribe’.
Here are the links to find the podcast on various players – the episode with Iain on the application of Karate kata is number 169…
- Apple Podcasts (the purple app on your iPhone)
- Google Podcasts (the new google podcast app)
- Spotify (it’s free)
- Google Play
Or you can stream the audio here:
If you enjoyed this episode then please subscribe, rate, and review the show. I can’t tell you how much that helps and encourages me to pump out episodes more frequently!
About Iain Abernathy: Iain is an author, a 7th degree black belt, and an expert in the application of traditional karate techniques. Find out more about about Iain, his books, articles, and apps at iainabernethy.co.uk.