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Occam's Hurdled Katana (Podcast)

This month’s podcast is called “Occam's Hurdled Katana”; which is my favourite title of all the podcasts we have ever done! In the podcast we look at the three most prevalent approaches to kata (and kata application) and analyse them using a logical principle called “Occam's Razor”. All historical and practical pros and cons are temporarily put to one side as we look at things from a purely logical perspective.

To be clear, I feel it is perfectly acceptable for anyone to choose to approach kata in whichever way they wish. That does not, however, mean that all approaches are equal. Some approaches are more functional and logical than others as neither property is “in the eye of the beholder”. If claims of validity are to be made, then they need to be backed up. With this in mind, the podcast looks at where the “burden of proof” lies when discussing which approach is to be the favoured one.

The final part of the podcast looks at how the discussion about which approach to kata is the right one needs to progress. I explain why it is up to those who hold to the weaker positions to prove themselves right. I also outline why some approaches have work to do if they are serious about engaging in the debate.

This may be one of the more controversial podcasts we’ve done and, regardless of the view you personally hold, I hope the podcast gets you thinking about the issues and how the discussion needs to move forward.

The podcast also includes Listeners Questions where we cover the integration of self-protection soft skills into karate training, high-kicking, classical and improvised weapons as they relate to kata, and how many kata should we practise.

It’s just under one hour of pugalistic-podgcasty-goodness and I hope you enjoy it!

All the best,


Occam's ...
Iain Abernethy