Heian shodan bunkai

Discussion in 'Karate' started by kerling, Nov 17, 2003.

  1. kerling

    kerling Hidden haito style


    I have been wondering about a bunkai of heian shodan.

    Kata goes:
    <- to the left
    1. step left Gedanbarai
    2. step right Oizuki
    -> to the right
    3. step right Gedanbarai
    4. step tettsui-uch (hammer strike)

    When you are doing technique number four pulling back before the strike, Do you think as the arm was grabbed?

    If the arm was grabbed do you turn the arm almost 90° and and pull it back to set it free?
    Or do you turn the arm back almost 40° and use your hip to pull back the arm? The hip should twist towards the left and in plane with the ground.

    The fyrst bunkai is easier to under stand but the latter seems to need much less strengh.

    Have you tried both? or how do you do this bunkai?

    Regards Kerling
  2. Ozebob

    Ozebob Valued Member

    The left side should include the hammer fist strike as well. It was performed that way in the Okinawan School system according to an elderly teacher that trained there.

    In the Funakoshi Kempo system of Taira Shinken, this can still be seen. In the other Pinan/Heian kata, the left and right sides are mirrored.

    This was a kata that introduced defense against other karate techniques such as front kicks. The hammer fist can be used to release your wrist from both a same side grip and a cross grip.
  3. Mike Flanagan

    Mike Flanagan Valued Member

    Hi Bob

    It's also in the modern Wado version, although the hammerfist is done on a different stance on each side.

    Can this use of the hammerfist be traced back to the 'old days'? I ask because I use it for this purpose, and it would be nice to see my own reverse engineering coinciding with the 'authentic' bunkai.

  4. Scaramouch

    Scaramouch Lost Soul

    Note that before you twist the arm and draw the hand back (for the hammer fist strike) the front foot is slid back. This is meant to pull the grabbing assailant forward and off balance and should make it easier to twist of the forearm and break free without much brute force. With the opponent pulled forward, off balance, the hammer fist can be applied to the back of the head.
  5. kerling

    kerling Hidden haito style


    Have you tried the second version I described?
    There is guy in my class wich has huge hands and can put his fingers together while grabbin my wrist. With this method I can set my arm free with out applying noticable force.
    When you do this you get the feeling that other person let go, not that you twisted your arm out the the grip.

    Regards Kerling
  6. Scaramouch

    Scaramouch Lost Soul

    IMO the application is a fluid, circular escape and strike - which is applied as soon as the grip is applied and should have an element of surprise. In this instance, the technique should be effective.

    If on the other hand you let a bloke with huge hands grab you with full strenghth and get into a low, solid stance it will be pretty difficult to escape - unless you punch him in the face first!

    I have practised Ju Jitsu and most of the Jitsu techniques rely on getting your opponent off balance, moving and using an element of surprise. If you let someone big get hold of you and get into a low stance most Jitsu techniques are difficult to apply as well.
  7. Ozebob

    Ozebob Valued Member

    Hi Mike,
    I have a rare book by Murakami Katsumi where many grappling applications are shown in the application of Shorin Ryu kata.

    What makes it kind of special is that the kata depicted are in a change over period between the kata of te and the new PE karate. A mix of old style techniques and the new.

    His kumite application of this move was firstly as a block against a front kick and then the hammer fist was used to deflect a follow up punch. (same as in the kinjo lineage)

    His toride application was as an escape from a same side wrist grip and a follow up strike to the forearm at that vulnerable spot we love to hit :)

    He did not show the escape against a cross grip but it just follows logically. I think this makes the application 'authentic' as Murakami Sensei is very highly regarded as an expert of the old karate.
  8. Ozebob

    Ozebob Valued Member

    In the Pinan, the shift back to cat stance or floating foot stance covers that possibility. The front foot can attack the opponents groin or be lifted as a distraction to assist in excaping the grip.

    If one feels immediately that the attacker is too strong or has banana fingers then a twist of the wrist and a regrab is a better option. The follow up technique need not be a punch, it can be a strike or a take down.
  9. Knight_Errant

    Knight_Errant Banned Banned

  10. kerling

    kerling Hidden haito style


    Yeah this is the bunkai I have been tought also. I have seen sensei Ken Hassel do 6 versions of this in a row. That was darn cool to watch.

    I urge you to try both methods I described as a bunkai to this kata. Then tell me if you notice any main diffrence?
  11. Knight_Errant

    Knight_Errant Banned Banned

    Oh OK, OK. Only trying to help goddarnit.
  12. cockney

    cockney New Member

    According to a book by Ian Abernethy, the technique to the right side could be seen as being in a more realistic situation when a appressor is poking you in your chest (telling you what they are going to do to you). You grab the finger pull it towards you then push it away maintaining control of it then step through with the left foot and punch. You decide for yourself, but don't be to caught up in thinking to rigidly about the movements. I have even shown it at my club as someone grabbing your arm and you pulling it away with great force to the right, swing the arm back and in a downward motion across the nose. The movements in kata are formalised to make it easier to learn and remember but the execution for real needs to be what ever works for you to survive/win.
  13. SparcZ

    SparcZ That's flexibility!

    The technique is an arm release as earlier indicated. If you step in closer the front right foot is also actually used a sweep during the release. The hammer fist can be used on the bridge of the nose or if placed correctly to break the collar bone.
  14. Zertz

    Zertz New Member

    I have to do the rotate, thrust, pull back thing because of my patheticly small wrists.
  15. b19vny

    b19vny Valued Member

    Wrist grabs may have been common in old samurai days when the wrist could have been seized to prevent a sword or dagger being drawn.

    This type of bunkai would be very difficult to pull off against someone with a determined grip who is attempting to bash you. However to get a 'feel' of the kata we learn this type of bunkai as beginners - usually with a very compliant partner.

    As we get further into our training we find our own bunkai based on experience and personal preferences mainly determined by body-type, size and strength.
  16. madfrank

    madfrank Valued Member

    The Heian kata were invented by master itosu for school boys on okinawa.

    Nakayama invented applications to appease his Ameriacan students, the japs didnt want to know the meaning of the kata?

    Nakayama died never having a street fight so ill let you decide the benefit of his applications.

    Why do you need so many releases from wrist grabs?

    who in a street fight grabs one of your wrists?

    If i grab your wrist you will not be able to shake it off,
    however if you smacked me in the mouth i probably would let go.

    People punch, butt, etc in the strets not grab your wrists

    Dont waste time learning fantasy techniques of one who never got into a fight despite grading himself to 10th dan against attacks that donnt happen.

    Learn what really happens out there and practice moves against them.

    they are in the kata if you look.
  17. Mike Flanagan

    Mike Flanagan Valued Member

    Hi Frank

    I've been in a few fights and I've had people grab my wrists. On the other hand I can't recall an occasion where someone tried to headbutt me (possibly because I'm quite careful about maintaining a guard that makes it a difficult attack to hit with), but of course I do accept that headbutts are a distinct possibility.

  18. shotokanwarrior

    shotokanwarrior I am the One

    What does that word mean? I've never heard it before.
  19. Mike Flanagan

    Mike Flanagan Valued Member

    Torite / Toride

    'Releasing Hand'. If I remember correctly.


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