The heart of Shotokan.
Enough for a lifetime.
Below you will find a list of all of the katas that are taught in the classical Shotokan Karate system. I have made a point of specifying the location of the various kiai points, and some of the techniques that are first introduced. Also the number of movements in the kata, as well as the approximate time in which each of the katas should be performed.
I recognize that Taikyoku Shodan, Taikyoku Nidan, and Taikyoku Sandan, are not taught at every Shotokan dojo. However, I have listed them here since all three of these katas are referenced by Master Gichin Funakoshi in his book, Karate-Do Kyohan. It is important for students to remember as they rise up through the various kyu levels, and Dan ranks, that regular practice of all of the katas that they have been taught is vital to their future progress.
Remember: "Learning the pattern of all twenty-six katas found in the Shotokan system is one thing. Truly understanding them, however, is a process that will take you an entire lifetime".
My thanks to Shihan John Ang, 6th Dan, Chief Instructor of The Australian Ninjukai Association, for allowing me to copy the images of the various coloured belts from his web site. Also, my thanks to Shihan Scot Mertz, Chief Instructor of the World Shotokai Federation, for allowing me to transfer all the photographs of the various Shotokan katas, and embusen, from his web site.
Remember: "It is far better to do a few katas very well, than a great many katas very badly. Train with patience".
Yellow Belt - 9th Kyu
Orange Belt - 8th Kyu
Red Belt - 7th Kyu
Green Belt - 6th Kyu
Purple Belt - 5th Kyu
Blue Belt - 4th Kyu
Brown Belt - 1st, 2nd, & 3rd Kyu
Sho Dan - 1st Black Belt
Ni Dan - 2nd Black Belt
San Dan - 3rd Black Belt
Yon Dan - 4th Black Belt
Go Dan - 5th Black Belt / all kata
Part the clouds - seek the way.
“The objective of karate-do is to contribute to the evolution
of the human spirit through physical and mental training.”
Peter Lindsay, Go Dan, (FSKA)