Kata, Dao lu & Patterns: the Root of Traditional Martial Arts

Kata. Dao lu & Patterns: the Root of Traditional Martial Arts

Although modern Martial Arts may not consider Dao lu‘s and Kata’s useful under a fight-pratical point of view, it’s undeniable that a proper Martial Arts preparation shall include a set of these patterns for the beginner to develop awareness of the style he/she has chosen, and for the advanced athlete to ground the deep meanings of the Dao lu / Kata within him/herself.

Kata & Patterns in Martial Arts are the best practice for:

– keeping Martial Artist’s mind focused throughout all the form being performed

– simulating the closest fight-like cardio workout

– rooting a specific style or technique to the heart of the practictioner

softening up all tensions in the body: it’s known that when we are beginners, performing a technique looks very rigid, and this stiffness affects the overall speed and power of the Dao lu / Kata. Practicing over and over has the powerful effect to force the body to contract only when needed, whilst keeping gestures fluent during all other movements.

– giving a sense of “squadron”: coordination, number of athletes performing, martial spirit… all things that certainly motivate both the single athlete and the group to perform better.

– re-educating the brain to respond to a specific action in a flash: this way the Martial Artist will be always ready.*

* for this to work it’s essential that mind is focused even when repetitions make workouts exhausting and your attention blurry.

A training that continues overnight. A funny episode that happens to me everytime I perform a pattern ad infinitum is realizing, in the middle of the night, that my mind randomly performs a specific technique as a consequence of doing the athletic gesture over and over. People whose job involve repetitive tasks know well how sometimes this can happen, as it’s a way for the brain to re-organize its action of the past day.

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About the author : Fabio Zambelli

Fabio Zambelli
Fabio has dedicated his life to Martial Arts for more than 20 years and has been teaching since 2005. Extremely committed and passionate to the way of the warrior lifestyle, he lives his days following Martial Arts’ principles: hard work and self-sacrifice. The diplomas he is most proud of are his failures as overcoming these demonstrated that Martial Arts values, along with their code of conduct, have worked on him. His extraordinary determination, concretized in Heart of The Orient, the world's first designed and hand-crafted Dojo for Shaolin Kungfu, is proof that human willpower has no limits.

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