Koshiki no kata
Jigoro Kano - Yamashita Yoshiaki
Alfredo Vismara's Conference during the Judo and its Kata Congress held in Solferino 2007 was supported by 3 films and puts forward the following argument
Kodokan, throughout Japan , and now also we, have film of Koshiki-no-kata carried out by Kano Jigoro. Pictures shot by probably the greatest film maker of our time, George Méliés, for the important Japanese Youth Festival ordered by the Emperor. Incredibly for that period there were as many shootings at normal speed as those in slow motion and when studied leave no doubts:
Certainly the film clip proposed by Kodokan as a model for the kata competions do not reflect the images of Kano Jigoro; the first particular you notice is represented by the break-fall techniques : migi-kaiten-ukemi with the right leg forward for todays Kodokan and with the left leg forward in the demonstration of Mr Kano byYamashita Yoshitaki;
Mr Kano practiced with Tsunetoshi Iikubo Kitoryu-takenakaha (the Takenaka branch of the Ki-to school) and we have firm reason to believe that the kata demonstrated by Mr Kano belongs to this branch of Kito-ryu. In the XVIII century there are two branches of Kito-ryu: Takenaka-ha and Yoshimura-ha, while in the XIX century (about 1860) Noda-ha appeared;
It seems that Nagaoka Shuichi joined Kodokan coming from that late branch of Kito-ryu called Noda (Noda-ha) and that Daigo Toshio, 10° dan and actual technical director of Kodokan, claims to be Mr Nagaoka's pupil (it would be interesting the letter where Nagaoka also recognises him as such) and that therefore he discarded the idea to adopt in Kodokan the Koshiki-no-kata of Mr Kano to formulate a version which resumes a few of the particulars of Noda-ha.
The Koshiki-no-kata of the Kodokan and the Noda-ha film clips can be found on sale; that of Mr Kano (normal speed and slow motion)can be seen on our web site.
The text presented by Alfredo Vismara (with the parallel two by two film clips) will be published in the Congress Proceedings and on our web site. Everyone can in the meantime choose whether to consider Mr Kano's experience fundamental for judo or that of Kodokan, directed first by Risei and then by Jikimitsu Kano.