Shotokan Karate Kata

Bassai Dai
Bassai Dai , literally translates "To Storm a Castle, major" or "To Penetrate a Fortress, major" is a kata practiced in Shotokan karate and is one of many variations of the Passai kata. There are two Bassai kata, the other one being Bassai sho, and although the "Sho" translates to "minor", it is taught after Bassai Dai. Bassai Dai is characterised by repeated changing of the blocking arms to represent the feeling of shifting from a disadvantageous position to an advantageous one and repeated attacks such as the three consecutive yama zuki represent penetrating a strong defence. Bassai Dai is usually classed as an intermediate kata and is generally first taught to karateka at 3rd kyu (brown belt) and in some Shotokan federations is allowed to be performed as a grading kata as far as 1st dan (black belt). Master Gichin Funakoshi studied the Passai (original name for Bassai) kata under Master Anko Itosu (pictured). Master Funakoshi then made some changes, mainly lengthening the stances and took the new Bassai kata to mainland Japan.

The ultimate aim of the art of Karate lies not in victory or defeat, but in the perfection of the characters of its participants.
Master Gichin Funakoshi

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Heisoku-dachi rei

Yoi Left hand wraps around the right fist.Left thumb placed in the top of the right fist, next to the right thumb.

Lift the right knee up and forward, at the same time, pull both arms to the left side of the body, keeping the hand positions, with the right thumb facing up.

For this demonstration we are landing then striking, when practicing the kata at full speed, try and land the strike with the step.

Moroto uchi uke (augmented forearm block) in kosa dachi (crossed leg stance) knees locked. There are several applications for this move, uppercut, backfist, palm heal, double knee atttack, etc

Left leg steps across in left arm uchi uke(inside preparation for a left arm forearm block). Hanmi ( uchi uke(inside forearm block) sideon) position.

To practice kata is not to memorize an order. You must find the kata that work for you, understand them, digest them and stick with them for life.
Master Gichin Funakoshi

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Right arm comes across the stomach, the left arm can stay bent or extend straight.

Perform gyaku uchi uke (reverse inside forearm block), with the right arm.

Right leg steps across, lift the left arm high and extend the right arm forward.

Perform gyaku soto uke (reverse outside forearm block) with the left arm.

Right arm comes across the Perform right arm uchi uke stomach, the left arm can stay (inside forearm block), taking bent or extend straight. the body from shomen (square), to hanmi (side on).

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit. Aristotle

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Pull the right leg back. Initially keep the right arm in the uchi uke (inside forearm block) position.

As the feet come together bend the knees and hook the right arm down and to the right. Imagine you are catching someone's front kick.

The finished position is feet together, left arm hikite and right arm bent at 90 degrees, elbow directly out from the Shoulder, palm of the right fist, facing outwards.

Perform right arm soto uke just using the right arm, the left arm remains at the side.

Left arm comes across the stomach, the left arm can stay bent or extend straight.

Perform gyaku uchi uke (reverse inside forearm block) with the left arm.

I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand. Confucius

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Bring the left leg up into shizentai (natural stance), keep the right fist at the side and bring the left fist on top of the right, with the bottom of the fist facing down.

Start to extend the left arm into tate shuto (vertical knife hand block). Timing the shuto with straightening the legs.

Finish the tate shuto (vertical knife hand block). Shoulders down and relaxed. This is a slow movement and zanshin (remaining awareness), should be applied.

Chokuzuki (straight punch) with the right arm.

Keep the body still, bend the arm, so the fist stops on the left side of the chest, with the back of the right hand facing up

Pivot on both feet, 90 degrees to the left, rotate the hips, body and feet strongly. Perform uchi uke as the rotation completes.

Everything is based on mind, is led by mind, is fashioned by mind. If you speak and act with a polluted mind, suffering will follow you, as the wheels of the oxcart follow the footsteps of the ox. Everything is based on mind, is led by mind, is fashioned by mind. If you speak and act with a pure mind, happiness will follow you, as a shadow clings to a form. Buddha

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Chokuzuki (straight punch) Keep the body still, bend the with the left arm. As you arm, so the fist stops on the punch, push the crown of right side of the chest, with the the head up, pull the chin back of the left hand facing up. in and push the stomach down.

Pivot on both feet, 90 degrees to the left, rotate the hips, body and feet strongly. Perform uchi uke as the rotation completes.

Stretch the left arm forward and take the right arm to the left shoulder, drive the left knee forward and start to step with the right leg.

Land with a right side shuto uke (knife hand block) in kokutsudachi (back stance).

Simultaneously, drive the right knee and right arm forward, pull the left palm to the right shoulder. Keep the same height throughout.

If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow. Chinese Proverb.

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Land with a left side shuto uke (knife hand block) in kokutsudachi (back stance).

Simultaneously, drive the left knee and left arm forward, pull the right palm to the leftt shoulder.

Land with a right side shuto uke (knife hand block) in kokutsudachi (back stance).

Although the next move involves Land with a left side shuto a step backwards, still stretch uke (knife hand block) in the right arm forward with the kokutsudachi (back stance). feeling that someone is pulling you forward. Pull the right leg.

Keep the left arm, step across with the left leg and drive the right arm forward, palm up, under the left hand.

When we see men of a contrary character, we should turn inwards and examine ourselves. Confucius.

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Start to rotate the hips and pull the arms down, the left middle finger is placed at the the wrist, near the base of the right thumb.

The arms should come to rest as you finish the hip rotation. Right arm is in the uchi/soto uke position, with the hand open and palm down

Keep the arms still and try to lift the right knee high into the gap between the arms.

Attack with fumikomi (low Recover the leg after the stamping kick) and Kiai. Pull kick, by lifting the knee high, both fists back to the chest as before the next move. you kick.

Step down with the right leg and land with a left side shuto uke (knife hand block) in kokutsudachi (back stance).

To put the world right in order, we must first put the nation in order; to put the nation in order, we must first put the family in order; to put the family in order, we must first cultivate our personal life; we must first set our hearts right. Confucius.

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Simultaneously, drive the left arm, left knee and left side of the body forward, at the same time lift the right arm left shoulder.

Land into a right side shuto- Slowly pull the right leg back uke in kokutsudachi. to the left. Bring the right hand back to the left hand, cupping the hands at stomach height, fingers straight and facing forwards.

Start to straighten the legs, at Continue to straighten the the same time form fists, with legs and simultaneously, roll the palms facing up. the arms, stopping the fists just above the forehead, with a small gap between the knuckles.

Push the arms forward and up, as you start to step with the right leg. Some shotokan groups lift the knee, instead of a step.

There are two things a person should never be angry at, what they can help, and what they cannot. Plato.

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Strike, rib height, with a double Tettsui-uchi (hammer fist), in han Zenkutsu-dachi (small front stance)

Drive off the back leg into migi chudan oizuki zenkutsu dachi (right mid-level stepping punch, front stance)

Step across with the left leg, perfom shuto (knife hand), with the left hand and lift the right arm, in preparation for a strike.

Attack with simultaneous nukite (spear hand) and taesho barai (palm heel block)

Keeping the back foot flat pull the left leg back, at the same time, perform manji gamae (gedanbarai/uchi uke)

This is a slow move, try and get the feet and hands to finish at the same time. Rotate the arms as the legs straighten.4 seconds.

You may train for a long time, but if you merely move your hands and feet and jump up and down like a puppet, learning karate is not very different from learning a dance. You will never have reached the heart of the matter; you will have failed to grasp the quintessence of karate-do. Master Gichin Funakoshi

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Pivot on the left foot and lift the right knee high. Use the right arm, which sharply comes to the left shoulder, to help with a fast turn.

Gedanbarai (downward block), kibadachi (horse stance)

Stretch the right arm to the left and bring the open left hand, under the right arm, with palm facing down.

Slowly extend the left arm into haishu uke (back hand block). 3 to 4 seconds

While keeping the right hikite arm fixed, kick mikazuki geri (crescent kick).

Land with mawashi enpi uchi (round elbow strike), kiba dachi (horse riding stance)

Tomorrow's battle is won during today's practice . Samurai Maxim

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The left hand stays where it is and simply makes a fist, the right arm punches down, with the left bottom fist, touching the forearm, just below the elbow joint.

Repeat the strike with the left arm, pulling the right fist back, so the bottom fist is touching the forearm, just below the elbow joint.

For the third time, repeat the strike, this time with the right arm. Try and use the hips on all of these strikes, the power should come from the legs and Hips.

Step to the right with the right pulling both arms to the left side, left fist hikite and right fist on top, with the bottom of the fist facing down.

Drive from the left leg, with yamazuki (U punch). The left arm should come up above the left shoulder, as much as possible. One fist directly above the other.

Keeping the heel of the left leg flat, slowly pull the right leg back. The right arm comes back to the hikite position and left hand comes down top of the right fist, bottom of the fist facing down.

Treat people as if they were what they ought to be, and you help them to become what they are capable of being. Goethe

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Drive the left knee up and forward, keeping the arms at the side.

Land with yamazuki (U punch) Keeping the heel of the right right fist directly above the foot flat, slowly pull the left left fist. Both arms extended leg back, feet together. equally from the body.

Drive the right knee up and forward, keeping the arms at the side.

Yamazuki for the third time. Left forearm parallel with the floor, right arm slightly curved upwards.

As you rotate the body 270 degrees, step up with the left leg, stretch the right arm high and the left arm low. Look forward.

By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest. Confucius

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Sweep the right arm across Perform a hooking movement Now stretch the left arm high the body with the back of the sharply bringing the right arm and right arm low, back of the arm up. to the centre and the left arm hands facing up, on both arms. hikite. As you complete this Keep facing forward. move, rotate the right hip in strongly. Feet in a straight line

Sweep the left arm across Perform a hooking movement the body with the back of the sharply bringing the left arm arm up. to the centre and the right arm hikite. As you complete this move, rotate the left hip in strongly. Feet in a straight line

Looking 45 degrees to the right stretch the left arm forward and step up with the left leg, pulling the right arm to the left shoulder. All this is done at the same time.

A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves. Lao Tzu

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Land into a right side shutouke in kokutsudachi.

Looking 45 degrees to the left keep the right side shutouke in kokutsudachi and slowly move the right leg 45 degrees to the back.

Sharply step up with the right leg, stretch the right arm forward and lift the left arm. Keeping the same height throughout.

Land into a left side shutouke in kokutsudachi.

Pull the left leg back into the yoi position.

Heisoku-dachi rei

When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you. Lao Tzu

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