I actually said that. It was a blog post on kata themes. Not that it's wrong, but I was thinking no one who practices Goju outside of Higa lineage/Shodokan people is even familiar with the "sun and moon block." Most of the other schools, I believe, do this short series of palm strikes to the opponent's face--one hand going up to attack as the other hand comes down to block. This is right after the three punches at the beginning of the kata. Now, either of these techniques is very good and effective. But if you're looking for theme, I thought at the time, the "sun and moon block," at least in variation, occurs in some form throughout the rest of the kata. So thematically, the kata becomes a study in the variations on how one can apply the "sun and moon block."
|The other block/attack.|
So, as has always seemed the case and is a lesson in itself, the structure of Goju katas seems to put basic or thematic techniques, occuring in threes, at the beginning of the katas.
The interesting thing to me is just that implication when one is analyzing or trying to understand kata and its applications--that we should look carefully at the opening techniques. One teacher may put the emphasis on one technique and another teacher may put the emphasis on another.
Again, however, the problem this suggests or the question that begs to be asked--and I'm sure I've brought it up in many other places--is that if you accept this way of looking at the structure of kata, is the principle the same for all of the other katas? That is, are all of the katas of the Goju system structured the same way, with basic or thematic techniques occuring at the beginning, usually in series of three moves? If it differs and some katas don't follow that pattern, does that mean they are from a different source?
Take Sanseiru, for example, which is really the point of this whole ramble, not to give too much away. Sanseiru begins with what looks like three double arm positions, like Sanchin, each with a slow "punch." So if this way of looking at the structure of kata--with opening basic or theme techniques repeated three times--is correct, what does it tell us about the other techniques in Sanseiru, particularly the ones where we see something similar to these arm positions, like in the middle section of the kata? That's the question. How could what appears to be a double kamae position be all that important or basic or thematic?
|Middle section block/kick.|
|First move in changing gate block.|
Well, anyway, that may be a bit cryptic to describe in words, but that's my latest thoughts on themes in kata. Hope it helps. It would be a lot easier to explain if I had a picture of it, which I don't....but kata and bunkai should really be taught in person, shouldn't they?! What the heck are blogs for anyway?