Tatkar is the basic footwork of Kathak. While the origin of this footwork still remains uncertain, it is considered to have been derived from the Natwari bols (syllables) ta, thai and tat. Natwar is another name for the deity Lord Krishna, meaning “Lord of the dance” or “best among dancers.” It is believed that when Natawara subdued the monster-serpent Kaliya and danced on its hood, the sounds ta, thai and tat were produced.

Tatkar relies on rhythmical patterns

Modern kathak leans heavily on the elements of technique, and tatkar is the fundamental footwork from which all other foot sounds and compositions are created. By nature it is a very grounding force, and when executed correctly resonates a melodious sound.

It is interpreted by some, as a study into the power of energy. The soles of the feet generate a flow of energy which streams through all the cells in the muscles and bones of the body as the body moves in tune with the energy. Energy flows up to  the mind, and a harmony of body and mind is realized.