Hidden Karate: The True Bunkai For Heian Katas And Naihanchi Hardcover – 15 Sep 2006
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Top Customer Reviews
He then compares it with judo which has a more structured approach. i.e Practise some techniques with a partner (this is the meaning of judo kata) then try your hand at free practise.
This is not rocket science. Why or why have so many westerners (I include myself) been bamboozled by the doing karate kata alone! Didn't know what we were doing and could not apply it. It's crazy and we never questioned our Japanese instructors. Groan.
If you study karate, regardless of style and have a great interest in Kata & Bunkai, then Hidden Karate is for you.
Although not cheap, (got mine of ebay) Hidden Karate is well worth the money and i doubt whoever buys this book will not be disapointed.
One may not agree with all the Bunkai shown here, however, Hidden Karate will open your eyes and give you a new approach to explore in your training.
A great, well written & fine Bunkai book, the best i have seen or read. A huge credit to the author.
All the best,
England Karate Association
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
1/4th of the book is a thesis that tries to convince you that the bunkai for the kata in karate has been taught incorrectly for the past 80 years. While 1/4th of the book seems a stupidly large amount of space to devote, I believe he is justified.
With that said, the rest of the book gives excellent pictures to explain the bunkai for the katas; bunkai which looks to be applied very well with kumite; which is what you are looking for, practical application for your katas.
Previously I state that this is not the definitive book on bunkai. I say this because the author doesn't have the space to make it so and you probably wouldn't have the funds to buy such a book. This will not be your last book on bunkai, but it will most definitely be your "first book" on bunkai.
Three cheers to Gennosuke Higaki for writing this book and sharing his knowledge and insight to the true meaning and use of katas and how to unravel the hidden techniques of the ancient masters!
After you read this book you will never look at kata the same way again. Already when practicing and repracticing kata I see things I never noticed before.
If you only buy one book on kata and bunkai, get this one!
Most books on bunkai include a couple applications, some nice, some rather doubtful. In this case, each and every application of the kata is believable and practical.
A curious fact: Gennosuke Higaki is the name of the villain in the movie Sanshiro Sugata, about the early days of Judo.
And ask your trainer to change his sport oriented Karate curriculum to something baking that bunkai into your muscle memory !
Many thanks to the author for sharing his knowledge so generously with us - Gennosuke Higaki is, to mention, a psyeudonym choosen by the author BECAUSE it is the name of a villain in the movie "Sanshiro Sugata", it is not his name.
The first part of the book includes guidelines and a completely new way of looking at kata and as you begin to internalize this information the katas begin to unfold and truely reveal themselves. You begin to see the other techinques spring to life; you see that each technique can be taken individualy but more importantly is part of a sequence in a dance that has unlimited steps. The book does give you techniques and how to apply them but this is only to help open your mind so you to can see what there is to see. Its not about learning an infinite number of techniques but more of applying the ones we do know and learning other to use in the framework of the kata.
I'm currently in a school that applies some of the principles taught in this excellent book but my senseis and fellow students wonder where I come up with so many different things. Its because I have been blessed with finding this tome.
The translation to English does have some problems with gramatical errors and repeated words but is better than many other books published these days. I would recomend this book for intermidiate to advanced martial artist and would reccomend to any karate instructor to include the information in classes for beginners on up.