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Pinan Sandan Kick/Punches

On the back side of Pinan Sandan there is a sequence where you are in a cat stance (nokoashi dachi) with a middle block (chudan uchi uke), execute a front kick (tsumasaki geri) with your back foot, step back into the nekoashi dachi, and punch twice. You do this twice, once to the left and once to the right.

When a new student learns this sequence, we teach him to kick, step back into the stance, and then punch twice.

As the student advances, we teach him to kick and throw the first punch so that it lands when the foot hits the ground (steps back into the stance).

As the student advances even more, we teach him to kick and throw the first punch, and then the second punch, so that the second punch lands when the foot hits the ground (steps back into the stance).

And actually, the timing is such that the recoil of the punch is timed with the foot hitting the ground.

Instructors will usually execute the sequence in the more advanced manner, but might do the first, second, or third version depending on who they are teaching (or who is watching).

As you can imagine, a student doing the first version will take longer than a student doing the second version, who will take longer than a student doing the third version. By the time a student doing the first version starts to throw the first punch, a student doing the third version will already be done with the second punch, and moving on to the next sequence.

Some students might say, "but throwing the punches before your foot is on the ground will be weak." This is true for a beginner, but not true once the student learns to use his koshi properly. With a more trained koshi, it is not necessary for both feet to be on the ground in order to generate power. One foot is sufficient with core torque.

This is just one example of variable timing combinations in kata. There are many in each kata we practice. This makes training very interesting!

Respectfully,

Charles C. Goodin