This video was filmed when I was teaching in Norway in November 2014. It looks at bunkai for the first seven movements of the form, and suggests some alternative follow-ups. Following the neck-crank, we could elbow the face (as suggested by the kata), we could execute what Gichin Funakoshi called the Byobu Daoshi throw – more commonly known as O-Soto-Gari – and, away from a self-defence context, we could even scoop the lead leg. The video shows these three options.
There are of course many other ways to follow up and everyone is always encouraged to explore their personal preferences.
In 1908, Anko Itosu – the creator of the Pinan / Heian kata – wrote, “Learn the explanations of every technique well, and decide when and in what manner to apply them when needed.” So we are encouraged to learn the bunkai, but DECIDE how WE would use that bunkai. It is therefore up to the individual karateka to draw from the collective knowledge pool to create a personalised method of application that is best suited to the individual. Exploring various finishes – not just those suggested by the kata – is one part of this process.
All the best,
PS The YouTube link can be found HERE