The Kata Commission of the International Judo Federation has launched a major initiative to encourage judoka from around the world to continue practising judo by adapting their training to the current situation. The underlying idea is that, despite the restrictions linked to the COVID-19 crisis, it is still possible to maintain our capability for progression. For this, kata can be an important tool, on the one hand for understanding our sport and on the other hand for personal development at the service of the judo community.

The IJF President, Mr. Marius Vizer, said, “Kata has been a key component through the history of our sport, but it also applies today and is essential for recreational judoka and all practitioners of our sport. All can take something from engaging in kata. Kata requires a very high level of training and discipline, two values which are more than necessary in sport as well as in life. It is more than a judo component, it is a mirror for those who practise it."

Based on this statement, the Kata commission produced two videos demonstrating how it is possible to practise and improve kata skills in this difficult time. In those two examples are the competitive forms of the kata (Nage no kata and Juno kata), the same form explained by experts and also today's application for training without access to a traditional dojo. The examples shown in the videos can be practised, as demonstrated, by children and adult judoka of all levels.

The President of the Kodokan, Mr. Haruki Uemura, said, “Jigoro Kano Shihan, the founder of Kodokan Judo, compared kata and randori to grammar and composition. Kata is a method of studying the techniques of Judo via prearranged orders and methods. This is a system to understand the basis of each individual technique. Jigoro Kano Shihan used to say that you can master the principle of competitiveness, reap the fruits of cultivation of the mind and dive into the true meaning of judo, by training kata and randori."

Today the Kata Commission wants to increase interest in learning kata throughout all the countries of the world and wants to demonstrate that based on the philosophy and the history of kata, it can be a very powerful, adaptive tool.

Franco Capelletti, Chair of the IJF Kata Commission, declared, “One of the main tasks of the Commission, which I have the honour to chair, is to bring kata into schools, as a basis for the system of learning judo, according to an evolution closer to the reality of our times. This does not mean to upset the concept of kata itself. We recently, together with the Kodokan and the French Federation, developed a ‘Kata for Young People’ programme, with the kodomo-no-kata, for instance.“

Kata is often considered as history, but it is very well adapted to today's situation and can offer new opportunities to our judo community.

BASED ON WHAT IS SHOWN IN THE TWO FILMS, YOU CAN INVENT YOUR OWN EXERCICES, FILM THEM AND SEND THEM TO THE KATA COMMISSION (kozlowski.judo@outlook.com by Wetransfer)

Those exercices will be reviewed and included in a more global initiative. You can propose exercices for the five following kata: NAGE NO KATA - KATAME NO KATA - KIME NO KATA - JU NO KATA - KODOKAN GOSHIN JUTSU

See also