Improve your Kata
With techniques that have been practised and perfected for hundreds of years, kata still holds an exceptionally vast and complex philosophy in its practice. This is an art form that involves the mind, spirit and body – where all three must progress concurrently for the practitioner to truly master this sport. For those wanting to improve their kata skills, this article will touch on a few methods that will not only help your physical performance, but will hopefully elevate your understanding of kata on a deeper, more introspective level.
5 minute meditation:
It is extremely important that the mind is clear of all traffic. Try breathing through the nose and out through the mouth as you simultaneously visualize the desertion of all your thoughts and troubles. There is no time limit, but meditating for at least five minutes should allow you to enter the right frame of mind and deliver maximum concentration in preparation for your fight.
Take time to stretch:
Make sure you have an effective stretching routine that will target your major muscle groups. When your muscles have loosened up they will be evidently most receptive and willing to perform the desired work.
Use a mirror:
Research shows that preforming something in contrast will establish improvements in your regular motion. Otherwise known as the contralateral training effect, this method is useful to train and develop the neurological pathways that your brain associates with each specific movement in Kata.
Visualize with a timer:
With a stopwatch at hand, accurately perform the full routine in your head. Next, complete the routine physically and compare the times to establish the relationship between your mind and body. If your results prove to be similar, then your mind and body have achieved complete harmony.
Your mind and body are designed to take the path of least resistance. In other words we thrive on the momentum of fast techniques to get us through the difficult parts of kata. Try slow down each movement so that you can focus on perfecting what our automated habits tend to avoid.
Perform in shoulder deep water:
Water adds a unique kind of resistance which provides a stimulating challenge for kata practice. This technique is great for physical rehabilitation as it eases the stress of your joints and muscles.
Have people surround you and attack you at random. You can only defend yourself using techniques from your kata routine. Try keep it simple using only basic punches, kicks and blocks. Start slowly and gradually increase power and speed. It is advised to use protective gear.
Kata exemplifies a sport of courtesy and respect, encouraging one to practice this art with the selfless nature it embodies. Remember that in your devotion there is reward.