Thread: Tensho Kata
05-13-2011, 10:57 #1
I recently began doing Tensho Kata again. My Sensei has his students do it at the beginning of every class. Tensho was one of those katas I learned, filed, and just kind of let go. I was at my dojo about three months ago enjoying some very rare "alone time" and just started doing it. I was a little rusty and had to actually refresh myself on some of the minute details of the kata. After I got rolling I couldn't stop myself. It was almost like a drug or something.
I began showing it to my students. We would line up on the side of the dojo where those who didn't know the kata could see me in the mirror and copy the movements and breathing. All of them, even the youngest, enjoyed it very much.
Last Monday we had our annual demo at one of our local nursing homes. The residents there love to have the kids come in. They don't care a whole lot about the karate aspects of the demo. It's more that the kids are there and show them some attention. This was an unusual demo because I had dropped the ball and lost all sense of what date it was failing to inform the younger students it was going on. I ended up with myself, two of my black belts, two adult students, and one brand new kid who didn't even have her gi yet.
We did the normal stuff; went through some kata, did some Ippon Kumite, showed some bunkai. I looked at the clock and we still had llike 20 minutes left. I was feeling really bad because I hadn't planned the demo out like I usually do.
Then it hit me while the black belts were semi free sparring. when they finished I asked the room if anyone wanted to learn karate. We have been going there for a long time and a lot of the people know me so they trust me. To my surprise (and a certain amount of dread I might add) 5 wheel chair bound residents came forward. I looked at them, some of them with oxygen tanks, and thought to myself "OK you can do this".
I explained a little about Tensho kata to them and told them to relax and simply follow my movements with their hands. My two black belts started smiling at me and came up to help. The green belt and blue belt adults didn't want to be left out and they stepped up. The new student grabbed her mom, who works there, and drug her up with us. We surrounded them so they could see the kata from all angles. While my students actually performed the kata even slower than usual I began coaching them on breathing and relaxing. We went 15 minutes over our alloted time and no one complained at all.
That was Monday. Yesterday, Thursday, I got a call from the Activities Director at the home. The residents were all asking when the "Karate Exercise Program" would be next. some of the ones with breathing problems had commented that they could breath easier that night than they had in a long time. Others with joint pain and problems in moving said that they felt really good the entire night. All of them said that they rested better that night than they had in months. several more of them had watched and wanted to do it the next time I "taught karate" at the facility.
I am truly impressed with the aspects of such an easy to learn kata. People have said that Tensho is "Easy to learn but difficult to master". I know it is a Goju Ryu kata and am wondering if there are any Goju Ryu stylist here that can give me more information on it.One must remember that karate is about thinking. Combat is about thinking. Battles are not won by the weapons that are brought but by the strategies that are employed.
05-25-2011, 14:29 #2
For what it is worth.....
Do your students work Sanchin well? For the most part practicing Tensho without strong basis in Sanchin kata is sort of futile but that is just me.Nastiness Prime – Soke, Honey Badger Kung Fu
09-29-2011, 21:33 #3
Jim, if the canon city you live in is the one in Colorado, PM me.Grand Master of Two Finger Typing Style (Also known as Hunt and Peck Fu)