Chinte – Strange Hands (3rd of 3 Bird Katas)


Kata Chinte is the third and final bird kata out of the 26 Shotokan katas and is probably one of the strangest katas to understand.

Its meaning can be translated into strange hands. The origin of this kata was believed to have been China, which would explain the big circular movements with the arms, which you see in Chinese marshal arts such as Kung Fu.

This kata has many changes in direction as well as tempo, alternating power from Sochin Dachi to Zenkutsu Dachi and was designed for woman and incorporates many quick techniques to deal with larger attackers. The use of the arms and fingers can be used to cause fatal strikes to vulnerable areas such as the eyes with Nihon Nukite and the use of Hiza Geri to the groin is also used.  

This is an easy kata to follow to learn, however its applications are still not really known and many versions of what the actual movements are keep being presented forward. This kata has two sections in that are yet to be confirmed as the true and clear application.

The first is the two big circular movements halfway through the kata, in which you swing both arms around the body and slide to the left and then swing the arms the opposite way and slide to the right before balancing on one leg.

The second application is the ending. Where we bring our feet together and hands come up into an egg in the nest posture seen at the start of Jitte, Jion and Jiin and then we proceed to jump backward to the right three times.

If you have never studied this kata before, take a look to see what you thing these movements may be and see if you can deliver a good interpretation of the movements.  

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