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Wastelander
KF Sensei
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Joined: 18 Oct 2010
Posts: 2442
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Styles: Shorin-Ryu, Shuri-Ryu, Judo, KishimotoDi

PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 1:12 pm    Post subject: Naihanchi Stances Reply with quote

Hello, everyone! I apologize in advance for the long post!

There are, in general, three stances used in the practice of the Naihanchi/Tekki/Chulgi/etc. kata, which go by different names depending on the style you practice. For simplicity's sake, I will use the names I am more familiar with:

Shiko-dachi = Horse stance with toes pointed outward
Kiba-dachi = Horse stance with toes pointed forward
Naihanchi-dachi = Horse stance with toes pointed inward

When I first learned Naihanchi, I was practicing Shuri-Ryu, and they did it in a very deep kiba-dachi. In training on my own for two years, I adjusted it to a higher kiba-dachi to experiment with that. When I started training in Shorin-Ryu, I was introduced to Naihanchi-dachi, which I was allowed to play with and adjust to fit my build and physical limitations. When I started training KishimotoDi, I learned a version of Naihanchi that uses shiko-dachi throughout.

From what I have been able to gather, Naihanchi likely went through a progression from shiko-dachi to kiba-dachi to Naihanchi-dachi over time, and different instructors stuck with what they liked, personally, for various reasons. You can actually see these changes over time in historical photos, which is especially interesting.

In one of Funakoshi Gichin's (founder of Shotokan) books, he performs Naihanchi in shiko-dachi, and then later photos show him using kiba-dachi, which of course became wider and lower as his son, Funakoshi Gigo, started changing things.

Konishi Yasuhiro (founder of Shindo Jinen-Ryu, and a student of Funakoshi, among others) also taught Naihanchi in shiko-dachi, and has photos of him demonstrating applications on Motobu Choki using shiko-dachi.

Photos of Motobu Choki (a student of Itosu Anko and Matsumura Sokon), himself, show him using a high kiba-dachi for Naihanchi, although he can be seen using shiko-dachi for some of his applications.

There is a photo of Kentsu Yabu (also a student of Itosu and Matsumura) teaching a class full of students working Naihanchi in shiko-dachi.

Hanashiro Chomo was a student of Itosu, but taught Naihanchi in shiko-dachi, according to the Bugeikan, which still passes along his material.

Some practitioners of Matsumura Seito (which describes its lineage and being non-Itosu Shorin-Ryu) use shiko-dachi in their Naihanchi practice, although I have also seen some use kiba-dachi, and some use Naihanchi-dachi.

Various practitioners of Okinawan kenpo or Tomari-te (such as Oyata Seiyu and Yamashiro Yoshitomo) use a stance that I would call barely a shiko-dachi, as the toes point out just slightly, and it is also a style that does not come from Itosu.

Kojo-Ryu, at least the version of it taught by Hayashi Shingo, which is also a non-Itosu system, uses shiko-dachi for its Naihanchi kata.

KishimotoDi is a style that not only bypassed Itosu, but also bypassed Matsumura, coming from a contemporary of his named Tachimura, and it uses shiko-dachi for Naihanchi.

The inward-pointed toes of Naihanchi-dachi start showing up later than either shiko-dachi or kiba-dachi, as far as I can tell by looking at historical photos/footage and styles of various lineages. Possibly as recently as the 1930's, as that is as far back as I have seen photos of it, which show Chibana Chosin (Dai Senpai of Itosu's dojo) using it in Naihanchi. Interestingly, Motobu specifically derided the "pigeon toed" version of the stance that Itosu had started teaching later in life.

All three of these stances, while similar in nature, have some slightly different capabilities and limitations, and having played with all three of them, myself, I've tried to explore those and make note of them. I'm curious as to which stances people here use in their Naihanchi kata, and what purpose they ascribe to that stance beyond "it's the way Sensei said to do it."
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barefoot-kohai
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Joined: 23 Jun 2009
Posts: 23
Location: Barcelona (ESP)
Styles: Shotokan

PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 4:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As Shotokan practicioner, I know these katas as Tekki (the three: of them shodan, nidan and sandan).

Rules state that they have to be performed in Kiba dachi -"standard " length of the position, about twice the size of your hips (just to say something)-. But as long your years start piling up your position tends to be a bit higher (as your aches and pains are more frequent )
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Last edited by barefoot-kohai on Tue Jun 19, 2018 12:00 am; edited 1 time in total
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MatsuShinshii
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Joined: 15 Aug 2016
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Location: Kentucky
Styles: Machimura Suidi Rokudan, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo, Judo

PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2018 5:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Naihanchi Stances Reply with quote

Wastelander wrote:
Hello, everyone! I apologize in advance for the long post!

There are, in general, three stances used in the practice of the Naihanchi/Tekki/Chulgi/etc. kata, which go by different names depending on the style you practice. For simplicity's sake, I will use the names I am more familiar with:

Shiko-dachi = Horse stance with toes pointed outward
Kiba-dachi = Horse stance with toes pointed forward
Naihanchi-dachi = Horse stance with toes pointed inward

When I first learned Naihanchi, I was practicing Shuri-Ryu, and they did it in a very deep kiba-dachi. In training on my own for two years, I adjusted it to a higher kiba-dachi to experiment with that. When I started training in Shorin-Ryu, I was introduced to Naihanchi-dachi, which I was allowed to play with and adjust to fit my build and physical limitations. When I started training KishimotoDi, I learned a version of Naihanchi that uses shiko-dachi throughout.

From what I have been able to gather, Naihanchi likely went through a progression from shiko-dachi to kiba-dachi to Naihanchi-dachi over time, and different instructors stuck with what they liked, personally, for various reasons. You can actually see these changes over time in historical photos, which is especially interesting.

In one of Funakoshi Gichin's (founder of Shotokan) books, he performs Naihanchi in shiko-dachi, and then later photos show him using kiba-dachi, which of course became wider and lower as his son, Funakoshi Gigo, started changing things.

Konishi Yasuhiro (founder of Shindo Jinen-Ryu, and a student of Funakoshi, among others) also taught Naihanchi in shiko-dachi, and has photos of him demonstrating applications on Motobu Choki using shiko-dachi.

Photos of Motobu Choki (a student of Itosu Anko and Matsumura Sokon), himself, show him using a high kiba-dachi for Naihanchi, although he can be seen using shiko-dachi for some of his applications.

There is a photo of Kentsu Yabu (also a student of Itosu and Matsumura) teaching a class full of students working Naihanchi in shiko-dachi.

Hanashiro Chomo was a student of Itosu, but taught Naihanchi in shiko-dachi, according to the Bugeikan, which still passes along his material.

Some practitioners of Matsumura Seito (which describes its lineage and being non-Itosu Shorin-Ryu) use shiko-dachi in their Naihanchi practice, although I have also seen some use kiba-dachi, and some use Naihanchi-dachi.

Various practitioners of Okinawan kenpo or Tomari-te (such as Oyata Seiyu and Yamashiro Yoshitomo) use a stance that I would call barely a shiko-dachi, as the toes point out just slightly, and it is also a style that does not come from Itosu.

Kojo-Ryu, at least the version of it taught by Hayashi Shingo, which is also a non-Itosu system, uses shiko-dachi for its Naihanchi kata.

KishimotoDi is a style that not only bypassed Itosu, but also bypassed Matsumura, coming from a contemporary of his named Tachimura, and it uses shiko-dachi for Naihanchi.

The inward-pointed toes of Naihanchi-dachi start showing up later than either shiko-dachi or kiba-dachi, as far as I can tell by looking at historical photos/footage and styles of various lineages. Possibly as recently as the 1930's, as that is as far back as I have seen photos of it, which show Chibana Chosin (Dai Senpai of Itosu's dojo) using it in Naihanchi. Interestingly, Motobu specifically derided the "pigeon toed" version of the stance that Itosu had started teaching later in life.

All three of these stances, while similar in nature, have some slightly different capabilities and limitations, and having played with all three of them, myself, I've tried to explore those and make note of them. I'm curious as to which stances people here use in their Naihanchi kata, and what purpose they ascribe to that stance beyond "it's the way Sensei said to do it."


We use a very natural/relaxed stance (you could call it Shiko-Dachi). The back is straight, butt pulled in to align the hips and spine and the stance is high. The feet are pointed slightly outward but not quite as much as a traditional Shiko-Dachi. The stance is however called Naihanchi-Dachi. I guess our version if you will.
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sensei8
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Joined: 23 Feb 2008
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Styles: Shindokan Saitou-ryu [Shuri-te/Okinawa-te based]

PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Solid OP, Noah!!

Solid posts, barefoot-kohai and MatsuShinshii as well!!



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Kusotare
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Joined: 02 Feb 2013
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Styles: Traditional Japanese Karate, Koryu Bujutsu (Jujutsu, Iaido and Kenjutsu)

PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In Wado-ryu the stance is Naihanchi-dachi however I am seeing this being exaggerated a little too much these days. I am not a big fan of the pigeon toes look!

At best, my Naihanchi-dachi has the outside edge of my feet running straight but no more turned in than that.

Importantly for us however the knees are inside the line of the big toes (unlike shiko-dachi where the knees are over the toes or even outside). We would classify this as an inner-circular stance and it plays an important role in understanding the principles of connecting to the ground and engaging the core muscles correctly.

K
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P.A.L
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Joined: 26 May 2004
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:28 am    Post subject: Re: Naihanchi Stances Reply with quote

I asked this question from Hokama sensei. He said shiko dachi and Naihanchi dachi are both valid , it is your choice. if you practice with some Naha-te guys then your Naihanchi becomes like Sanchin. if you use to ride horses your Naihanchi is inward ,if you are a farmer then your more comfortable with shiko-dachi.
Now, his shiko dachi is not low at all. also if you look at him doing Hojo-undo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGNDtn5C5eM
he goes down in shiko-dachi and comes back up ,in Naihanchi-dachi .
Sensei Ron Lindsey says that in Naihanchi powder goes up and in Shiko-dachi in goes downward.
Is it possible that Itosu got the idea from Naha-te and Sanchin dachi?
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Kusotare
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2018 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can I throw something else out there?

When standing in your preferred stance, are you pulling, pushing or remaining neutral?

What I mean by this is if you drew some imaginary arrows by the side of your feet to show which way you are applying pressure would the arrows be pointing outward, inward, forward, backward or nothing at all?

K.
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MatsuShinshii
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Joined: 15 Aug 2016
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Styles: Machimura Suidi Rokudan, Ryukyu Kenpo, Kobudo, Judo

PostPosted: Wed Jun 20, 2018 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kusotare wrote:
Can I throw something else out there?

When standing in your preferred stance, are you pulling, pushing or remaining neutral?

What I mean by this is if you drew some imaginary arrows by the side of your feet to show which way you are applying pressure would the arrows be pointing outward, inward, forward, backward or nothing at all?

K.


In Naihanchi, I would say all of the above. If you think about the applications, they pretty much cover the spectrum you just described. Obviously not both feet at the same time. Meaning if you're executing a technique to the right side the arrows would be inside for your front foot and outside for your rear foot based on the direction of force. Obviously from a front view there would be no front or back foot. Hope that made sense.
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Kusotare
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2018 9:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MatsuShinshii wrote:
Kusotare wrote:
Can I throw something else out there?

When standing in your preferred stance, are you pulling, pushing or remaining neutral?

What I mean by this is if you drew some imaginary arrows by the side of your feet to show which way you are applying pressure would the arrows be pointing outward, inward, forward, backward or nothing at all?

K.


In Naihanchi, I would say all of the above. If you think about the applications, they pretty much cover the spectrum you just described. Obviously not both feet at the same time. Meaning if you're executing a technique to the right side the arrows would be inside for your front foot and outside for your rear foot based on the direction of force. Obviously from a front view there would be no front or back foot. Hope that made sense.


Actually, I was thinking about both feet at a time - and whilst performing the kata (not as part of any application).

K.
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Wastelander
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Styles: Shorin-Ryu, Shuri-Ryu, Judo, KishimotoDi

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2018 2:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you, everyone, for your replies.

@barefoot-kohai - I'm familiar with the stance used in Shotokan--it's the same one used in Shuri-Ryu when I learned Naihanchi, there, and it hurt my knees and ankles. I was really looking for the reasoning behind using the stance, rather than just which stance you use, though

@MatsuShinshii - I've seen varying degrees from Matsumura Seito folks, but it does tend to be a stance with the toes pointed outward enough for me to consider it a shiko-dachi, for the purposes of this thread. Do you know what the reasoning is, in your style, for using that stance as opposed to a stance with the toes forward or inward, by chance?

@Kusotare - It sounds like you're saying the Naihanchi-dachi you use in Wado-Ryu is purely for biomechanical study purposes? To address your question about the stances, the feet tend to be twisting inward while exerting enough outward pressure to maintain a springiness to the stance, but as MatsuShinshii says, the stance pressure changes based on the applications for us. The solo kata is not divorced from the application in the way we train
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