This post on the surface may seem obvious yet I find many have not clue as to the principles involved. People tend to skip over such important things to get to the fun or exciting stuff. Regardless ......
It came to me that what may be the most important change to kata practice, training and teaching is to gear it away form bunkai and focus it directly into teaching and practice of the fundamental principles with emphasis on the physiokinetic, i.e. breathing, posture, Triangle Guard, Centerline, Primary Gate, Spinal Alignment, Axis, Minor Axis, Structure, Heaviness, Relaxation, Wave Energy, Convergence, Centeredness, Triangulation Point, The Dynamic Sphere, Body-Mind, Void, Centripetal Force, Centrifugal Force, Sequential Locking & Sequential Relaxation, Peripheral Vision, Tactile Sensitivity, Rooting.
I don't mean we leave out theory, technique and philosophy but since bunkai as it stands today seems geared more toward dueling or sport the self-defense aspects should focus on these principles that are the essence of all combatives. It makes sense then one can take the appropriate training in self-defense that makes use of the principles as the foundation and then the applications can remain - open-ended.
It seems to me that to focus on the principles then use them in reality based self-defense would make the kata of martial systems more relevant to modern times especially with all the road blocks one encounters in applying self-defense, i.e. psychological, physical and legal, etc.
I recently posted that kata needed to change along with the antiquated kata drills and what some call the Shimabuku self-defense drills. In order to accept the truism of violence we have to let go of those aspects that are rooted in either dueling or sport models. We have to accept that dueling and sport provide some benefits that can translate to SD, i.e. the same fundamental principles here apply to the applications of both dueling and sport, for self-defense when avoidance and deescalation fail to do the job which by the way if you are aware don't often occur without your direct involvement, etc.
Kata training, focus on the fundamental principles of martial systems ..... seems like a pretty good thing to me. Leave out the legends and dogma that currently runs the kata practice and "focus grasshopper, focus on FPofMS. Then again ,what do I know?