One of the reasons I wanted to join this forum was to ask this question:
What over-arching strategy or 'theme', if there is one, do you see in your katas?
For example, the kata's I am most drawn to are ones that have a definite theme or strategy underlying the bunkai that informs how the bunkai should be performed.
For example, Kata Sai-fa, means to tear and smash, the strategy is to tear free and smash. When sparring or examining the kata, it is easy to have this mind in order to make the bunkai consistent with the strategy. Then, when I want to spar in Saifa style, I can think of this over-arching strategy and the techniques appear without having to think about it.
Another example is Sepai, which has a circular theme to it, which I imagine as winding up rope or jamming something in a cleat. There are no straight punches in Sepai at all, and it's the twisting and turning to pin and jam that is all I need to keep in mind when I want to spar in that style, or tease out other bunkai possibilities.
But other kata are less obvious what the defining strategy is - or at least I can't quite get the sense of it - despite them having fantastic applications.
Does this matter? Or do you see yourself as having an over-arching individual style or strategy to which you make kata fit? Is that relative to your school or to yourself individually?