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Who, the what, the why
From: katagwa@a...
Date: Tue Jun 26, 2001 2:39 am
Subject: Advincula's Kata (Who, the what, the why)

Who, the what, the why


I never created a kata until I was over 50 years old. The reason why I created kata is simple; at my dojo I taught Escrima, Hindiandi, Isshin-ryu karate & kobudo,  Ryukonkai kobudo. For the empty hand part of Escrima, I taught combat judo and Hindiandi. I had a few who wanted to study Hindiandi so I created two kata for them to study. I named them AJA 1 and AJA 2 after my initials. At a seminar in Mississippi, Susan Riddles Aikido Sensei who was Italian said that in Italian, AJA meant gas. So I said I was changing the name and Kanpu (Mark Riddle) called it Goncho 1 and Goncho 2. Goncho was one of my nick names meaning "Glasses." In a latter trip to Okinawa, Tokumura Kensho said that Tatsuo called me Katagwa. Kata with the suffix -gwa as in Kyan Chotoku's nick name Chan migwa. In 1984, I went to see Kaneshi Eiko and Shigema Genyu, two of Tatsuo's senior students. My brother-in-law, Ikemiya Hiroshi called and made an appointment to meet them at Kaneshi's dojo. They told me they didn't know for sure who was coming and thought of several people. They thought it might be Akabu (Dave Zaslow), Higiqwa (Paul Heffernen), or Watabu (John Bartusevics ) or Katagwa (me). Akabu is red head person and Dave Zaslow was a red head. Higigwa is mustache person and Paul Heffernan had a mustache. Watabu means fat person, and John Bartusevics was large. I thought when they called me the kata man it was their nickname for me, but it was Tatsuo's because I never ever trained with either Kaneshi or Shigema.

Kata Katagwa 2 was the acutely the first kata I created. It had techniques from Goju-ryu, Isshin-ryu, combat judo and Hindiandi. Later I created Katagwa 1 based on seisan kata using techniques from Isshin-ryu and Hindiandi.

Hindiandi only had two kata so Katagwa 1 and 2 were made for my Hindiandi people. Others heard about these kata and wanted to learn them. None of the kata I created is a requirement for Isshin-ryu.

Kusanku Kama and Kusanku Nunchaku are again made because I also teach Advincula-Do kobudo.

Kusanku Kama and Kusanku Nunchaku was created because Tatsuo created Kusanku Sai. The first person to learn Kusanku Nunchaku was Holly Zeigler who wanted to learn the Nunchaku. So she was there at the time it evolved. Parts of the Kusanku kata Holly was having problems with and I was going to remove the difficulty but she begged me to keep them in. She mastered it like a pro.

I created several Escrima kata but only practice one. The name of this kata is "Ascension" and was named by Sam Duncca who is my highest ranking Escrimador. The true meaning is hidden in the last technique.

I have said this about kata. You can only know for sure the true meaning of a kata if you know the person who created it and why. Unless you were their at the time it was being created you can only speculate the who, the what and the why.

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