When training with a high ranking Bujinkan instructor at a seminar he counted like this. I had to ask him about it. He said that was what Soke Hatsumi had told him. I found it interesting and found similarities in some Okinawan styles.
Most styles that practice San Chin no kata count name their kata in this fashion.
Chi-earth-1 and so on.
From what I gathered it was just a very old and peasant way of counting.