As you work toward the Purple Belt (Rokukyu) ranking you will learn the last two versions of the popular Pinan Kata. These are a bit more complex than earlier Pinan Kata and have a few complex movements, but they have a similar pattern of movement to earlier Pinan Kata.
The Pinan Kata originated in Okinawa and are largely attributed to Anko Itosu, who combined conceptual elements from other Kata to form the Pinan Kata series. They were later introduced into Japan by Gichin Funakoshi. Funakoshi changed the name to Heian Kata and inverted the order in which the first two versions of the Kata are both numbered and taught (Our Shodan version was Funakoshi’s Nidan version, and vice versa). So you will encounter all of these differences when you look up the various versions of these Kata on the Internet, which you are encouraged to do.
You will also explore the Tensoku Ryu Kuikku Bouei Kata. There are three versions of these Kata that demonstrate creative ways to deal with an opponent while remaining attentive to defensive positioning and speed of execution. These three forms are based on the ETD model, which you will study in detail.
Finally there are two Kata for each of the Jo, Bo, and Hanbo weapons. The two Jo Kata are the final two forms in the Tensoku Ryu Jo series.
There are also two Tensoku Ryu Bo Kata. The Bo weapon is typically about twenty inches longer than the Jo. Having used a Jo for some time now you will likely find that the Bo seems positively monstrous in your hands. The added length is both an advantage and a disadvantage. It makes the weapon harder to move quickly and makes spinning movements slower and a bit more awkward. However, the weapon has dramatically improved reach and power attributes which offer distinct benefits.
Finally, there are two Tensoku Ryu Hanbo Kata. This weapon has quite different handling and movement benefits and risks than the Jo and Bo. It has a character all its own.
All of the various weapon forms show different ways in which you might conceptualize the use of a stick weapon in different situations. All of these weapons Kata were created by Richard Munson to provide an extensive and diverse exploration of traditional stick weaponry.
Purple Belt Kata