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Further Thoughts on Wazas

Updated: Feb 29, 2020

Hello everyone, before we know it, it is Apr 2019!

We have an article for reading pleasure. We hope it would be a fun and informative read.


Wazas are collections of Katas or forms. The path to mastery of wazas involves observing, doing kata repetitions, feedback and corrections.

Yet overtime, one might experience a plateau in progress or face a wall in improvement. This invariably raise frustrations or uncertainties in self.

Here, we describe some brief pointers to help overcome this:

Contemplate oneself, and the practical and tactical aspects of the Katas. What motion is not being optimized? Why? How can it be improved? Sometimes, what is impeding progress could be:

The Physical... This may range from fundamentals in body posture (footwork, upper body positioning, handling of the iaito, tenouchi, etc.)

Or the Psychological... Which indirectly casts awareness regarding contemplation on the Inner self. Is it the imaginary opponent you face in Waza practice or is it your own weakness?

Knowing these and persevering at the Wazas at your own pace and terms helps to overcome these impediments. The implicit significance lies in the discipline and control of one's self. Doing repetitions under focused concentration helps condition the body so that one's body can move unconsciously without being distracted by environmental perturbations.

In contemplating the wazas, it is hoped that it would be able to guides one towards a better understanding of self while trying to understand the real meaning of the Wazas (which can't be seen from first glance). This concept is rooted in that a lack of proper understanding of one's self, one's tools, one's kata can result in defeat.

Slow and steady practice. It might be obvious but is still a timeless advice to know the range of own ability before practicing techniques at full speed/ full strength. Even then, full speed/ strength still requires the inclusion of Jo-Ha-Kyu. Each Waza has a specific rhythmn; a time for observing opponent, measuring distances, judging the optimum time and position for striking/deflection. Failing to observe this makes practice less effective.

True capabilities of a Waza is realized when the kata is performed correctly and the iaito is used correctly.


Having discussed Katas/ Wazas for sometime, next month's article would move on to a different topic. Till next time. Cheers.


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