|Zenkutsu-dachi is not featured in Hangetsu Kata.|
(3) Selective bunkai (analysis/break down) of Hangetsu:
(1.1) The second major error is the incorrect use of the legs; that is, when the hips rotate the legs should remain motionless. This characteristic is most obviously shared with Sochin. Consequently, this means that power is generated from the centre, in isolation, as opposed to primarily being initiated from the drive of the rear leg. (Please note however: - kakato chushin is still applied). In this way, the tanden is more utilized when transitioning between hanmi and shomen.
(1.2) The third mistake that stands out is superfluous actions, especially on slow movements i.e. – movements 1-10. The tendency is for people to ‘add fluff’ to their kata, which is the norm in `sports karate kata'. In actuality, simple movement is not only the most effective, but by far the most difficult to do. Moving directly and without waste is an imperative skill for those seeking the true way of karate. In this regard, rather than give specific examples, I suggest to simply check one’s own actions with brutal honesty—then do some pruning.
(1.3) My forth point might sound a little pedantic, nonetheless, I can’t resist making it. Be careful on movements seven and eight: make sure that ‘ryo jishi ippon ken ryo chichi shita’ and ‘ryo jishi ippon ken chudan morote-zuki’ have solidly formed ippon-ken; that is, the index finger is pressed from the side by the thumb. In this way, the index fingers are clamped between the thumb and middle finger to make strong fist.
|Migi chudan mikazuki-geri/Sasho-ate (Hidari ashi-dachi).|
(1.4) The fifth issue I'd like to address is movement 11, where the first kiai is applied: ‘chudan uchi-uke doji ni gedan-uke’. This technique brings to light a number of technicalities, however, the combination of the following two aspects are often incorrect. Firstly, the pivot point is the axis of the front leg—not the seichusen—and the head remains set. Secondly, the winding up/chambering of the uke is tight and slightly precedes the movement; thereby, becoming more ‘reactive’ as opposed to being passive to stimuli. It is worth mentioning here that this principle is imperative and fundamental in all Karate-do techniques; hence, this tip.
(1.5) Point six is another seemingly simple aspect, yet, often more cerebrally understood than physically applied. Keep the wakibara (the armpits) tight. In particular, return to point ‘1.2’ above and focus on your centre… Hangetsu-dachi and Hangetsu kata, as a whole, should take you on a journey to your seika tanden: usho tsukami and sasho tsukami (movements 12, 14 and 16 respectively) are particularly useful for evaluating (and then ‘further refining’) these foundational aspects.
(1.6) My Seventh correction is a pet hate. It is ‘the alternative’ of three actions, as eluded to above. Please note when making movement 17 (Migi chudan uchi-uke), when transitioning to the right side into migi ashi mae hangetsu-dachi, do not utilize yori-ashi but, rather, ‘direct step’. I guess I could go on and on, so here is one final point to wrap up…
(1.7) The final advice I'd like to give is about the gedan-barai following chudan mae-geri keage with the simultaneous fist raise to the shoulder (movements 28/29, and 34/35). These are not gedan-ukewaza but, rather gedan-zuki. Lastly, the final punch (movement 41) is uken chudan-zuki in hidari ashi mae hangetsu-dachi. It is not gedan-zuki in zenkutsu-dachi. It's important to note that zenkutsu-dachi does not feature in Hangetsu.