Kata originally were teaching and training methods by which successful combat techniques were preserved and passed on. The basic goal of kata is to preserve and transmit proven techniques and to practice self-defence. By practicing in a repetitive manner the learner develops the ability to execute those techniques and movements in a natural, reflex-like manner. View Karate Kata ( 型 ) »

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The Rōhai kata are a family of kata practiced in some styles of karate

The name translates approximately to "vision of a Crane" or "vision of a heron". The kata originated from the Tomari-te school of Okinawan martial arts. It was called Matsumora Rōhai, after Kosaku Matsumora, who was presumably its inventor. Ankō Itosu later took this kata and developed three kata from it: Rōhai shodan, Rōhai nidan, and Rōhai sandan. In Shorin-ryū/ Matsubayashi-ryū this Kata introduces Gedan Shotei Ate (Lower/Downward Palm Heel Smash) and Ippon Ashi Dachi. (One Leg Stance) It contains a sequence of Tomoe Zuki (Circular Punch) exactly the same as the one in Bassai, although the ending of the sequence chains into Hangetsu Geri/Uke (Half Moon Kick/Block).

In modern Karate, some styles teach all three kata (such as Shito ryu). However, other styles employ only one of them as a kata (such as Wadō-ryū, which teaches Rōhai shodan as Rōhai). Gichin Funakoshi, founder of Shotokan, redeveloped and renamed Rōhai as Meikyo (明鏡), literally "bright mirror", often translated as "mirror of the soul." Meikyo is a combination of all three different Rōhai kata, containing elements of each. In Tang Soo Do and Soo Bahk Do, practitioners have added a board (or brick) breaking element to the form, which can be performed using either a downward punch or palm strike.


This article uses material from the Wikipedia articles "Rōhai", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.