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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful.
Good but not great...
By K. W. Forsythe
I really wanted to like this DVD. It's on a topic that I have a lot of interest in. But it wasn't as good as I thought it would be given all the reviews of it that I read. Not that it was bad, but I think I got my expectations up a bit too high.
I am also a GoJu Ryu black belt and have been studying martial arts of several types since the late '70s. Sanchin kata is the foundation of my primary style.
Yes, there were some very detailed explanations of what to do. What I found somewhat lacking were explanations of why to do it the way that was being shown.
For example, there was a lot of detail presented about how to place the feet in the Sanchin stance. But I found the explanation less than compelling that part of the reason for this placement was so that the middle toe of the foot was pointing straight forward, thus giving the stance is characteristic pigeon-toed appearance and feel.
There was no real "why" given as far as "why" it might be important to have the middle toe pointing straight forward (or why it would have to be exactly that position as opposed to slight variations on the angle). Saying that this position actually has the foot pointing forward, even though it feels pigeon-toed, is not really an explanation in my view.
And perhaps my disappointment in this sort of explanation is partly due to my having my own ideas about why the stance is the way that it is. In my mind, this has a lot to do with wrapping the musculature around the leg bones to take the slack out of the system and thus better supporting the skeletal structure. The position also allows for the knees to track inward over the toes which both helps protect the groin and allows the practitioner to sit into the inguinal groove of the hips (what in Chinese martial arts is referred to as sinking into the "kua"). The pigeon-toed nature of the stance, combined with the muscle wrapping, also provides some outward pressure at the heels. The combination of all of these factors creates an extremely stable and mobile stance (mobile in any direction) for moving on what may be at times a very unstable or uncertain surface.
The reality is, for me, that the degree of angle in the pigeon-toed positioning of the feet is related to the height of the practitioner and the length of their leg bones and leg muscles relative to each other. A taller, lankier person may need to have a more "severe" pigeon-toed position in their feet to accomplish the overall goal than a shorter more stout person would.
I couldn't find anything in the explanation given that either helped me to better support my own ideas about the stance, or that gave me enough to challenge my own ideas about why the stance is the way that it is.
This is what I felt about many of the explanations given in the presentation for other details of the form. Not that I saw anything that was necessarily wrong. The explanations just didn't go as deep as I was hoping they might given all the great reviews that I read.
Again, not that the DVD is bad. It's actually very well done. The productions values are very good. And the information would be very helpful to those trying to get started with Sanchin kata.
I did think that Sensei Wilder spent a little too much time at the beginning of the DVD railing against the idea of people being able to learn martial arts from a DVD (a position that I always find a little ironic coming from folks who are selling martial arts DVDs). Personally, I think it's the quality of instruction that's important, not the media by which the instruction is delivered.
So overall, good but not as great as I was hoping for.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
Definitely worth Buying!
Obviously different videos from different Master's vary. This DVD was very intuitive, well thought out, and organized. The Material was excellent; and the formant made it very easy to digest. You can go back and select the specific areas that you want to review, and or work on. It should definitely be a part of any Classical Karate Practitioner's library. At this point I buy everything this Author produces.
0 of 0 people found the following review helpful. See all 32 customer reviews...
By Amazon Customer
Excellent book on Karate