Kyokushin Karate Kata Tensho

転掌  Tensho

Tensho means rolling or fluid hand, literally translated as “revolving palms”, from the characters Ten (revolve) and Shō (palm of hand).  Tensho is the soft and circular (Yin ) counterpart to the hard and linear (Yang ) Sanchin kata.  Not only was Tensho one of Mas Oyama’s favorite kata, he considered it to be the most indispensable of the advanced kata:

Tensho is a basic illustration of the definition of Karate, derived from Chinese Kenpo, as a technique of circles based on points.

Tensho should be a prime object of practice because, as a psychological and theoretical support behind karate training and as a central element in basic karate formal exercises, it has permeated the techniques, the blocks and the thrusts, and is intimately connected with the very life of karate.

A man who has practiced Tensho kata a number of thousands of times and has a firm grasp of its theory can not only take any attack, but can also turn the advantage in any attack, and will always be able to defend himself perfectly.

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