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Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture
Non-martial “bunkai”?

A totally non-serious thread!

Early this morning I drove to the local shop to pick up a few bits and pieces for breakfast. I get home and get out of the car with my hands full of the shopping. Facing the car door, I take a step back and, without thinking, I deliver a Naihanchi / Tekki Style “returning wave kick” to the door to close it. At that point my messed up bunkai-brain triggered the “that’s from the kata” alarm!

It got me wondering if others here have ever done something totally un-martial and then had your brain pair it with a kata motion?

Another example I can think of is when gathering up a rope after kayaking. I had one end of the rope in my left hand and was using my right hand to wrap it around my left elbow, and then back to my left hand. You do this repeatedly and you get the whole rope looped around for forearm, all uniform and neat. Every time my right hand hit my left elbow it triggered the “that’s from the kata” alarm because it was the same position as in Naihanchi / Tekki (see picture).

This is obviously a sign that I spend a lot of time (too much?) thinking about kata … and I’m sure I’m not alone in this!

Anyone else had the experience of doing entirely non-martial tasks to have their body / mind make a totally unjustified connection to kata?

All the best,

Iain

Alex Morris
Alex Morris's picture

I've thought this before. One example I can think of is when I have carried a box, or something that requires both my hands to lift and hold, from the car to the house. I get to the door and realise I need to get my keys out my pocket. Not wanting to put the box down and pick it up again I lift one of my legs to rest the box on my thigh and support the box with one hand so I can get my keys and unlock my door with the other. At that point I'm on one leg, unlocking the door with one hand and supporting the edge of the box with the other, all I can think is chinto comes in handy when I least expect it.

Iain Abernethy
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Alex Morris wrote:
... all I can think is chinto comes in handy when I least expect it.

Love it! So happy it's not just me :-)

Dod
Dod's picture

I always open one of the doors at work with the same move from Naihanchi/Tekki 1 as the photo - pushing down the handle with one hand and pushing the door open with the other. I'm ready with the shovel kick/returning wave as a redundancy.

I always associate this with the translation of a funakoshi quote about discovering little secrets when you study karate long enough

Les Bubka
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Great topic, one arm stuck putting the jumper on. Pinan godan, just before the jump, arm up other by the elbow trying to free it, sometimes resulting in little jump from the frustration.

AllyWhytock
AllyWhytock's picture

Kihon Waza - very low Uko Geri to open a swing door. - vector & bridge to catch a closing swing door and to push it open. - gyaku tsuki with double hip movement to open a swing door. I have a thing about swing doors :)

Chikara Andrew
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Kitchen Kata. I often go through movements of kata in the kitchen, it has space and the window can act like a mirror. I find myself closing low cupboards with the opening kicks from Kururunfa.

Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

Brilliant! I may be a freak … but at least there are plenty like me :-)

Leigh Simms
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The edge of the bathroom door at my work office gets shuto'ed and hammerfisted as I perfom mini-trapping on it when I walk past.

Inside frame of my windshield (between the windshield and side door wind) has been conditioning my Uraken for a while. 

Mawashi Geri to the elevator buttons (on the oustide of the elevator). Nukite to the buttons on the inside. I am nearly 100% sure that the security team who watch my apartments via CCTV think I have "issues".

mastermcelona
mastermcelona's picture

Yes!

I've done many of the above mentioned things as well...

In addition, sometimes when encountering doors at convenience stores which swing outward. I will use forward palm heel presses, sometimes with 2 hands.  Ha ha.

Again... mostly at convenience stores, if I'm trying to leave, and the person out the door ahead of me doesn't hold the door.  I immediately judge how quickly the door will close and "attack" me... then I deploy the appropriate block.  Usually a knife hand or middle block.  If I'm having a good day, I may elect to use only evasive maneuvers and footwork.

Upon exiting the store, I can then reflect on what a close call that was...

Good topic, have a great weekend everyone 

Mike Celona

riversidema
riversidema's picture

We don't blow out candles on the birthday cakes, they are extinguished with backfists!  Distancing is crucial, too close and there could be icing malfunctions.

Arctic Aidan
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The dog spots a squirrel or other dog and pulls forward abruptly....in turn use my hikite to pull the leash back and with a kiai like 'hey!' remind my dog not to pull.

Jason Lester
Jason Lester's picture

I have been doing the same for many years, using Mae-Geri or Nami-gaeshi to close car doors or the front door when loaded with bags of shopping and have no hands free : )

Mr P
Mr P's picture

ippon nukite  from Unsu is OK for turning on and off the house lights. I do not recommend uraken or empi - it will end with a trip to B&Q!     

Alan

Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

It looks like we could make a kata called “Shopping from car to cupboard in one trip” :-)

Gareth
Gareth's picture

I always close the dishwasher door by hooking my foot underneath it and pulling it up ala the foot lift in Tekki Shodan. Tekki/Naihanchi proving to be a popular kata for this type of bunkai I see.

One of life's small pleasures is to ippon nukite a new jar of coffee ala Unsu/Gojushiso Dai. Large cardboard boxes frequently broken down and folded up for recycling with an allusion to the 'grab head, pull down, knee strike' near the end of Heian Yondan (I sometimes do the turn too, my neighbours like it).

We always say that karate is for all of our life and this possibly illustrates it better than most things. And it's great that we can share being a bit nuts with other likeminded nuts too...

Kata for life!

Alex Morris
Alex Morris's picture

Gareth wrote:
Large cardboard boxes frequently broken down and folded up for recycling with an allusion to the 'grab head, pull down, knee strike' near the end of Heian Yondan (I sometimes do the turn too, my neighbours like it).

I like this and may have to try it next time I take out the recycling.

Tau
Tau's picture

Many. Numerous. It makes sense, to be honest. Muscle memory.

- Various kicks for opening / closing doors. I one rushed a VERY ill gentleman from the ward to ICU and performed simultaneous jumping front kicks ("butterfuly kick?") to closing double doors. I remember thinking "I couldn't do that in the dojo if I tried." Also yes, can doors, the front door, front gate etc

- Hojojitsu for securing banners or leaving cord tody

- Ippon-ken for opening the foil of jars

Marc
Marc's picture

Something in the way I like to put on my jacket reminds me of moving into "bo dori" left and then right. A move from katas Meikyo or Kanku-Sho.

When I take a walk through the woods and a twig hangs in the way, I always make sure to parry-pass it out of the way, almost unconciously.

It's also easy to spot a dedicated karateka in public, because we always do these little moves with our hands whenever we feel we're not being watched (like taking a walk, or in an elevator). Or am I the only one?

I once dreamt of karate training and executing a powerful front kick. Unfortunately it was right before waking up, so my leg actually did it. As I was laying in my bed facing the wall I almost broke my big toe.  

Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

Marc wrote:
It's also easy to spot a dedicated karateka in public, because we always do these little moves with our hands whenever we feel we're not being watched (like taking a walk, or in an elevator). Or am I the only one?

You’re not alone! Those little “mini kata” we do and have to abort when people spot us for fear of being led away to a padded room :-)

Marc wrote:
I once dreamt of karate training and executing a powerful front kick. Unfortunately it was right before waking up, so my leg actually did it. As I was laying in my bed facing the wall I almost broke my big toe.

There was a work’s bus to the factory I was employed at. It would pick up me and my workmates at 5:45am and we’d generally all spend the 45-minute journey asleep (private bus with just us on it so perfectly safe to do so). Long story, short … I was dreaming I was sparring and back fisted the guy sitting next to me. A few days later I was eclipsed by a friend dreaming he was playing soccer and leaping into the aisle of the bus to make a save ;-)

All the best,

Iain

Marc
Marc's picture

Iain Abernethy wrote:

(private bus with just us on it so perfectly safe to do so).

Well, appearently not. LOL

Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

Marc wrote:
Well, appearently not. LOL

Good point! :-) Perfectly safe for me perhaps … although, not those sharing a bus seat with me ;-)

All the best,

Iain

dhogsette
dhogsette's picture

This is a great thread! When I was in college and graduate school, I moved several times, always searching for that perfect apartment that is affordable on a student stipend (btw...that apartment does not exist...). When moving heavy objects, I often used side stance to rest the furniture on my thigh as I changed grip or rotated around (from walking backwards to walking forward). Thankfully, now I can afford movers these days (much better on my back...LOL). However, a colleague who likes antiquing (yes, that is a verb in the Midwest of America) asked my help to unload an old desk he purchased. I found myself using that side stance trick.

I'm not sure if the next example was intentional, but it worked and was hysterical. In 2015, I was training with many folks from my organization at our honbu doju in Okniawa. One night after having a bit too much habu sake at the Dojo Bar and Grill, a must visit if you are in Naha, (yes, a key violation of self-protection, but we had a total blast sharing karate war stories), one member in our party was having a challenge reaching for the taxi door handle. He stepped off the curb, leaning forward, and started reaching for the handle, but he ended up twirling both hands as in Gojushiho, and thrusing his hand out as in nukite to grab the door handle. I busted out laughing and said he just discovered a new bunkai for Gojushiho. LOL. A great memory.

I've found myself using nukite to press elevator buttons, as if it were someone's eye or throat. I've used the double palm-heel hip press from Rohai to open doors that have the long horizontal press handle. I've used the parry and low block position in Wankan to parry and hold a closing heavy door. And while carrying heavy boxes into a door with the handicap door opening button, I've used the Naihanchi shovel kick to press the button to open the door. I've also closed my car door using the Naihanchi kick while carrying many bags of groceries, as Iain described above.

Glad to know I'm not alone nor crazy in these behaviors...well, not alone...we all may still be crazy...

David

Iain Abernethy
Iain Abernethy's picture

dhogsette wrote:
Glad to know I'm not alone nor crazy in these behaviors...well, not alone...we all may still be crazy...

That’s enough for me. Crazy, but it good company! ;-)

Evening artist
Evening artist's picture

What is it about doors? I've been using the doorframe in my house as a makiwara for years now. I also remember using an axe kick to open a door handle, then a quick yoko geri to push it open (obviously, while my hands were full) only to just miss someone on the other side. I don't do that anymore!

Finally, I once caught a door that was blown open with a makeshift shuto uke. Then the bloke behind me asked "Hey, do you do Karate?"

Embarrassing...

Barry O'Sullivan
Barry O'Sullivan's picture

This is a great thread! I'm seriously beginning to think that the applications to kata were not for self protection after all, rather helping us to perform every day tasks around the home and in public!

mrjeffmacdonald
mrjeffmacdonald's picture

I use parry pass all the time to close cupboard doors :)

MCM180
MCM180's picture

The other day I went out turkey hunting. I was walking over broken ground, through a creek, etc. at 4am with only a small headlamp to light my way. I had to watch my step carefully.

So I did "karate walking" -- put the front foot out first before shifting my weight forward. In a sense it was just walking carefully, but to me it was karate walking