WHAT'S IN THIS APPENDIX?
Kata is the Japanese word for practice. I first heard the term when I was 8 and started taking tae kwon do classes. A kata is a series of choreographed moves designed to help students sharpen their technique and commit to memory specific patterns of attacks and blocks. If you've ever seen two highly skilled and trained martial artists fight, you've no doubt noticed the incredible speed with which they move and string together attacks and blocks. That is the result of hours upon hours of kata.
Practice makes perfect. Talent helps. But most athletes, musicians, and anybody else who has achieved great success in their field will tell you that practice is what turns the potential of talent into the reality of success. In his book Outliers (Little, Brown and Company, 2008, ISBN: 9780316017923), Malcolm Gladwell defines the “10,000-Hour Rule.” In short, the rule states that the key to success is mostly a matter of practicing a specific task for approximately 10,000 hours. He makes a compelling argument, citing the success of the Beatles, Bill Gates, and Tiger Woods.