Are there “kata” or forms to learn in CSFS?


No, there are no sets of 38 or 108 kata/forms or even 5 Fist Sets like in more traditional styles of martial arts. Why not? Here is an example:


In White Lotus Kenpo (and Kenpo is a very good MA btw) there is a form called “Thunder and Earth”. The attack is a straight arm choke or grab while the defense is to clap your hands together (thunder!) as you thrust your arms up (heaven!) in a triangle shape to free yourself of the attacker’s hands, then you bring both the attacker's hands down and yours (earth!), and then the defender applies a hammer-fist followed by an elbow strike.


The problem with a CSFS student practicing this as a set form for hours on end is this: what if, after you bring the attacker’s hands down, he finds himself in the perfect position to shoot in for a take-down? (CSFS principle of striking from wherever you find yourself) Now you are either off balanced or fighting to keep your balance and the opportunity to use that hammer-fist and elbow is now gone!


Rather we use flow drills in CSFS so that students can learn how to transition from one individual technique into another, and another, and another… Sparring or actual self-defense is a chess match and your opponent may not be playing with the same chess strategy as you so it makes no sense to stick with one kata or forum when your attacker does not know the pre-arranged reaction that you would expect when doing a kata with a student in the same school/style. After you learn individual techniques, it is better to spend your time learning how to act/react/flow with a person who is not using the same techniques as you rather than to waste hours on elaborate sets of 25, 50, 100 movements.


Note: When you learn sets of 5, 8, 10, and 12 angles in class, do not mistake these as techniques or kata because they are not. They are there to simply show you avenues or paths to enter in an effort to strike the body.