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Kata: Bassai Dai


English - Storming a Fortress OR Removing an Obstruction

Bassai Dai is one of the fundamental katas of Shotokan Karate. Two katas were developed from the Okinawan Passai kata, though the origins of that kata in the different schools are unclear - it is widely found today in different styles of karate, with emphasis on different aspects depending on the teacher who developed it. Within Shotokan, the Sho form emphasises many rotational movements, and has a distinctively lighter feel. Bassai Dai, on the other hand, is an unrelentingly powerful kata, and must be performed with fast and strong movements throughout.

Of the two videos, Sensei Kanazawa's shows the techniques required by the SKA, notably the use of mikazuki-geri - this should be referred to by students who are unsure as to how a particular part of the kata is to be perfomed. Sensei Osaka's, on the other hand, shows the full power and spirit needed, although some of his techniques are not identical to the SKA's version.

Sensei Hirokazu Kanazawa, 10th Dan

As previously noted, Sensei Kanazawa uses mikazuki-geri throughout. This is the SKA standard.

Sensei Yoshiharu Osaka, 8th Dan

This version of the kata typifies the speed, strength and timing of Bassai Dai. Where the techniques differ, however, please refer to Sensei Kanazawa's video.