Anyone who has read my post on how I am dividing up my training this year will know that I am focusing on saifa and sanchin kata this month. Well, I'm meant to be, anyway.
The reality is that I have spent a fair amount of time doing saifa, and also because of the summer training I have been doing with my sensei I have worked quite a lot on seisan, shisochin and happoren (if only to get them stuck in my head while I learn them).
Sanchin, on the other hand, I have hardly done at all - maybe half a dozen times this month. Hardly enough for a "focus" kata, let along for one of the two foundation kata of goju. There are a couple of reasons (apart from the lure of the new kata mentioned above): I have a crappy body structure when I do it; and it's very hard to do.
When you get down to it, these are both poor reasons not to practise sanchin more regularly. Doing it will a) improve my body structure (provided I concentrate on it while doing so) and b) become easier with regular practise. So I have made a new resolution: 1000 repetitions of sanchin by the end of the year.
I started this evening, with 10 in a row. I'm keeping track of them on the wall of my garage. Only 990 to go!
Most goju schools, when talking about sanchin say a similar thing: the name sanchin translates to "3 battles", and the three battles that are being fought in sanchin are for control of the mind, body and spirit. In our school we have a different take on sanchin; the three battles that we emphasise are concentration, breathing and tension. Sanchin is a kata that emphasises grounding and expansion.