September: Heian Yondan


平安四段

Translation: A Peaceful Mind (Level 4)

# Moves: 28

Belt Level: 

 

Some of the Key Moves

Kokutsu-dachi (back stance)

Kosa-dachi (cross-legged stance)

Kakiwake uke (double wedge block)

Juji uke (x-block)

Morote-uke (augmented block)

Mae-empi (roundhouse elbow strike)

Mae geri (front kick)

Yoki geri keage (side-snap kick)

Hiza-tsuchi (knee strike)

Summary

The fourth Heian kata can be very difficult for some karate-ka. It incorporates different timings and calls for a certain amount of flexibility. Nonetheless, the basics learned here are still vital, and will appear often in higher katas. Be patient and keep practicing!

Some things to note:

Do not rush the slow parts of the kata. This is to introduce the concept of different rhythms and controlled movements. Maintain kime (focus) and balance throughout these slow movements.

You MUST bring your left foot back to the centre between the 2 yokogeri keages.

All mae-geri in this kata are jodan (face level). If you can’t kick that high, make sure there is a difference between the level of the kick and a stomach level punch. You can work on stretching to improve your flexibility for this kata.

The falling back-fist in kosa dachi is intended as a strike down on your opponent’s nose.

Be mindful of your embusen. Make sure the angles of kakiwake uke are wide enough to bring you back to your starting point.

When “grabbing” for the knee strike, grab at an opponent your size (YOUR head HEIGHT and WIDTH). Pull straight down, with hands closed.

Embusen

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