Kankū-dai (観空大) TutorialThis is our Kanku Dai tutorial for brown belts.
This is one of five brown belt kata and we have a kanku dai video tutorial below.
The original name for this kata was Kusanku.
The name Kūsankū was the name of a Chinese diplomat from Fukien, who traveled to Okinawa in the eighteenth century. Many people beleive the kata Kusanku has strong roots with White Crane Kung Fu.
Kanku dai is a very long kata and is generally first practiced at brown belt in most Shotokan Dojo. This kata is known for it’s distinct opening move. My Sensei used to say to meditate as the sun rises, following the sun rise by lifting the arms (eyes almost completely closed), using the opening move of the kata.
Many karateka get very confused when first practicing Kanku dai, as it contains lots of moves from the 5 Heian kata. Many karate historians believe the karate moves contained in the heian kata, come from the Kanku Dai (to view the sky).
They say that master Itosu thought Kusanku was too long and contained too many karate moves for new karateka to learn. So he took Kusanku and divided it up into the five heian kata, although this is just one theory, it does make sense.
Although this kata is classed as an basic to intemediary kata, it should be practiced long and hard as it contains all the basic fundamentals of Shotokan karate. If Kanku dai is mastrered, the black belt kata and karate in general will be strong.
A great training exercise is to go through Kanku Dai once slowly, then once fast, then repeat ten times. Kanku dai is a long shotokan kata and it is very taxing physically and mentally. But this kata contains all of Shotokan karate’s basic fundamentals.
Mastering this kata will propel your karate to new levels of excellence. There are slight variations from dojo to dojo and that is understandable, but the essence of Kusanku remains the same which ever version you practice. Oss!
Kankū-dai (観空大) Video Tutorial