Chuan Fa/Kosho Ryu/Kempo/Kenpo/Karate/Tode
Many martial artists believe the story of Bodhidharma or Damo, the third son of an Indian King. It's believed that Damo studied Vajra-musti (Sanskrit:वज्रमुश्टि, "thunder fist" or "diamond fist") refers to a knuckleduster-like weapon and also the name of ancient Indian martial art practiced by a class of wrestlers known as Jyeṣṭīmalla.
The Malavidya Vajra Mushti focuses in self development, a "body prayer" method, whose movements follow nature in all its creation. Flexibility, agility and perception, rather than bulky bodies, are stressed as the basic characteristics. Using natural force and following the three main divisions (animal, vegetable and mineral) this science managed to bring the art of combat into a high level form, with a strong philosophycal view, unique and uninfluenced by the outside world. Whether Malahkhara-Gatka in Punjab, Nakh-A-Kha-Mushti in Gujarat or Kalari-Ppayatum in Kerala, Martial Arts in India still follow its divine aspiration.
Mosaic from the baths of Caracalla in Rome (eary third century AD).
This athlete - with typical muscular body and small ponytail - carries a palm branch and a crown, both victory symbols.
The Indian art may have derived from Pankration a martial art introduced into the Greek Olympic Games in 648 BC and founded as a blend of boxing and wrestling but with almost no rules save disallowing biting and gouging of the opponent's eyes. The term comes from the Greek παγκράτιον , literally meaning "all powers" from πᾶν (pan-) "all" and κράτος (kratos) "strength, power".
In the story, this Indian monk arrived in China, eventually making his way to Shaolin temple (Sil Lum) on Mt. Songshan. There he found the monks' physical condition poor and so unable to sit in prolonged meditation. At first he was so disgusted that he retired to a cave to sit in meditation for nine years.
Then a monk named Hui Ke cut off his own arm to show that he had grasped Damo's deepest teachings. Damo then agreed to teach the "Marrow Washing" and "Tendon Changing" classics as well as the 18 Hands of the Lohan or exercises for the greatest holiness.
"As I look at you now, I think it likely that you will not complete your training because of your exhaustion and as a result of the state you are now in, you could never perform the ascetic practices necessary for the true enlightment. For this reason, I shall give you a method by which you can develop your physical strength enough to enable yourselves to attain the essence of the way of Buddha.”
The method he set forth is contained in the Ekkin Kyo (Ekkin “Sutra”). These were a series of 18 exercises (“Shi Pa Lo Han Sho” or 18 Hands of the Lo Han), which he documented in a manuscript called the I-Chin-Ching (Muscle Change Classic).It is popularly held that the physical drills introduced by Bodhidharma was the basis for the Shaolin Ch’uan Fa or Kempo (fist way).
The original Shaolin Monastery was built on the north side of Shaoshi Mountain, the central peak of Mount Song, one of the Sacred Mountains of China, located in the Henan Province, by Emperor Xiaowen of the Northern Wei Dynasty in 477. At various times throughout history, the monastery has been destroyed (burned down) for political reasons, and rebuilt many times. It is said that five Shaolin temples existed in various locations throughout Chinese history, although all 5 were rarely active at the same time. Not long after Boddhidharma entered Shaolin, Emperor Wudi banned Buddhism in 574AD and Shaolin was destroyed. Later, under Emperor Jingwen in the Northern Zhou Dynasty Buddhism was revived and Shaolin rebuilt and restored.
Heaven and Earth Society-
Choi Dak Jung (蔡德忠), Fong Daai Hung (方大洪), Ma Chiu Hing (馬超興), Wu Dak Tai (胡德帝), and Lei Sik Hoi (李式開)
It's been said that these movements increased to over one hundred movements to two hundred movements and so on. Chuan Fa or China hand Boxing became Gung Fu/Kung Fu as we know it today. The Chinese arts spread to the islands of Okinawa and thus the "Karate" background is born. Today, Shaolin Temple is a practicing Buddhist temple where adaptations on the original Shaolin Kung Fu are taught. According to some sources, the original Shaolin Kung Fu was too powerful so was replaced by Wu Shu, a less aggressive form of martial arts.
Beni Hasan (also written as Bani Hasan, or also Beni-Hassan) (Arabic: بني حسن) is an Ancient Egyptian cemetery site spanning the 21st to 17th centuries BC. Some claim this as the birthplace of the Martial Arts.
Tomb 15 – Baqet III: notable for the depiction of some 200 wrestling techniques.
Bushi Matsumura (1797-1884) studied with the famous Karate Sakugawa who spent significant time studying martial arts in China. It was Sakugawa that brought many kata to Okinawa and initiated many kata such as Kusanku. He is also credited with introducing the dojo concept. Matsumura is credited with integrating the Chinese Chuan Fa with the Okinawan Te creating Tode (1750) which evolved into Shuri-Te (1830) which evolved into Shorin-Ryu (1870).
Itosu Azato Motobu
He was the first teacher of Sakugawa, Kanga "Tode" who was to become known as the "Father of Okinawan Karate."
Chito Ryu Karate
Chito Ryu Showa
We who study karate-do
Must never forget the spirit of the samurai
With peace, perseverance and hard work
We are sure to reach our goals.
Dr. Chitose Henry Slomanski Wallace Reumann
Sensei Chad Wissler / Shihan Dennis Wissler
Chito Ryu is a style of karate founded by Tsuyoshi Chitose meaning "1,000 year old Chinese style." The character's refers to the Tang Dynasty of China.
The style was officially founded in 1946.
The creator of Chito-Ryu Tsuyoshi Chitose was a medical doctor who based Chito-Ryu on principles of human physiology. He discovered that some of the exercises and stances being used were detrimental to the health of the students studying Karate. Dr. Chitose's philosophy was also that Karate, as a self-defence system, should include throws and joint immobilization techniques.
Chitose's Kempo Karate Manual
"For we who study, of course, the main purpose of karate training is to master technique, make a healthy body, have respect and manners, fortify an indomitable spirit, and to foster the growth of these kinds of people."
-Dr Tsuyoshi Chitose Chito-Ryu Karate
Although generally classified as a Japanese karate style simply because Chitose formulated and founded Chito Ryu principally while living in Kumamoto, Japan, some modern practitioners feel it is more properly categorized as an Okinawan style given that its roots and techniques are firmly grounded in and derived from traditional Okinawan Tode.
A few additional trademarks of Chito Ryu Karate include the hip technique emphasis during Kata performance and hard, slow respiratory techniques. The hip technique (koshi-waza) is performed by first stepping back, then forward when beginning many of the katas (unlike fast Shotokan and Goju Ryu forms). Although this movement takes more time when completing some techniques, like low blocks (gedan barai) it provides greater power through greater hip movement.
In addition to koshi-waza there are many respiratory techniques which are used during kata training. These hard breathing (kokyo) techniques help cleanse the body by compressing the internal organs in order to excrete toxins and enzymes, in the Chitoryu katas respiratory techniques are usually used to signify either choking or throwing an opponent (shime or nage).
In 1984 Chitose Sensei passed away in June and his son, Chitose Yasuhiro, became head of the International Chito-kai. At this time he also took on the name Chitose Tsuyoshi, as is Japanese custom, and is known to many in Chito-ryu as "Soke"- meaning "from the founding family".
On August 14, 1994, the United States Chito-ryu Karate Federation became independent of Japan and the International Chito-ryu
Chitose Kempo Karate and Chitose Chito Ryu
On December 1, 1957, Reumann opened a dojo in Monterey, California. The school was called the American Karate Federation and was affiliated with the All Japan Karate-do Federation. Reumann trained in Chito-Ryu Karate under Sensei’s Hank Slomanski and Fukamoto.Wallace Ruemann received his 4th degree instructor's license from Slomanski in the “old style”. He received his Godan, 5th degree, Shihan from Slomanski in Chito ryu, the way it is taught today.
Early Wallace Reumann Publication
Slomanski Sensei working Kiai waza (Kokyo)
Master Rueman left the military and returned to New Jersey where he began teaching both the Old Style and the New Chito Ryu. This is very evident that he continued using and teaching the stuff that works, the "REAL KARATE" due to his hard line students who took the tournament circuit by storm. They were Prentice Newton and James Cheatham.
Master Ruemann opened up what is reported to be a total of 27 schools. One of his schools was in Trenton, New Jersey which is where James Cheatham was taught.
While learning under Master Ruemann, James Cheatham had become a ferocious fighter winning almost all tournaments he entered. This in its self is a testament that Master Ruemann continued to teach the old art.
Two of his top students were well known fighters from the east coast,
Kareem Allah and Prentiss Newton.
(James Cheathum Front Row #7, next to Cheathum Far Right, Front Row, John Keehan aka Count Danté, "The Deadliest Man Alive")
“I knew the school was Black Panther when I went there but I was not impressed with that. The other students did not want me there. I remember one guy complaining to Cheatham saying why was he letting a white guy in. Cheatham was having none of that and said I was welcome as long as I wanted to learn. For a while some of them tried to dissuade me from staying by being unnecessarily rough in our fights but after I started to beat some of them, they changed their minds and accepted me. I don't know whether Cheatham had connections to the Nation of Islam but he definitely was not a racist. You couldn't have found a nicer all around good guy.” Peter Wesler
Sensei James Cheathum died in a plane crash May 30, 1966
John Keehan was the mid-west director of the United States Karate Association (USKA) until 1962. He left that organization in 1964 to form the World Karate Federation. In 1990 a new World Karate Federation unassociated with Keehan's was formed.
In Chicago, Keehan co-promoted America's first full-contact style martial arts tournament at the University of Chicago on July 28, 1963, and hosted many other such tournaments during the 1960s, pairing practitioners of different styles against one another. Most notable of the early masters he trained under was Sensei Robert Trias.
He founded The Black Dragon Fighting Society
Nage no Kata
Nage No Kata is a set of bunkai taught in Chito Ryu Karate. It is different than the Kata, although it shares the same name, that is found in Judo and Kodenkan Jujitsu. It consists of five high attacks, five middle attacks, and five low attacks. Several of the throws utilize the (fumi-komi) or "step behind takedown". Wrist locks and (atemi) strikes are also used to overturn and assist in several of the throws.
Historical Note of interest:
Elvis Presley was a Chito Ryu Nidan under Henry "Hank" Slomansky before later training with Ed Parker in American Kenpo Karate. Picture below shows Elvis with a Chito Pin on his chest.Elvis Presley studied karate in Germany in the late 1950’s when he was serving in Germany in the Army as part of a tank unit. Elvis left the Army and Germany with a kyu rank and returned to the states in 1960. On July 21, 1960, Elvis received his shodan rank from Slomanski Sensei. On October 17, 1963, Elvis received his nidan rank from Slomanski Sensei.
Slomanski also gained another very notable student, Dan Inosanto (white shirt), from 1959-1960, who later followed Bruce Lee.
Hank threw terror into everyone. It wasn't unusual for me to look at the man next to me and see him visibly trembling.
- Dan Inosanto
"Every would-be karate man is investigated before he is permitted to train.
My ultimate goal is to teach clean cut Americans what their bodies and minds are capable of doing"
- Henry Slomanski
Chito Ryu founder Dr. Tsuyoshi Chitose's maternal grandfather was Matsumura Sōkon.
Yamaguchi and Chitose
Incredible techniques of the Southern Seas, this Karate!
How regrettable that their true transmission fell into decline.
Who will take up the incredible challenge to restore Karate's former glory?
With a pure heart, I vow to the heavens to do all that I can!
All must realize that Karate is the impregnable fortress
With which we defend ourselves without weapons.
Chitose, Tsuyoshi, Kempo Karate-do
Mamoru Yamamoto was a fifteen year old boy when he began his training with Dr. Chitose. With the guidance of Dr.Chitose, Yamamoto became one of his top students, and was an active competitor in the Japanese National Tournament Circuit. He retired undefeated as the All Japan Karate Champion in 1961. Dr. Chitose pronounced him the Master of his own style, giving this style the name of Yoshukan. Two years later, Master Yamamoto established the first Yoshukan Dojo. In 1963 Dr. Chitose visited Yamamoto and saw the development of the system with the potential for growth through Yamamoto’s work. He changed the 3rd kanji of their branch's name from "kan" - meaning to stand alone - to "kai" - meaning association.
During the following year Yamamoto would accept a new student Mike Foster, who was a 2nd Dan in Goju-Ryu. Mike Foster was stationed at Itazuke Air Force base in the late 1950’s and studied with Sensei Watanabe who taught Goju karate at the Itazuke Administration Annex base gym. He would earn both Sho Dan and Ni Dan rank from Sensei Watanabe. Foster would train under Yamamoto for the next four years, returning to the U.S. for short periods of time. Foster received his 3rd Dan rank on October 20th 1964 from Chitose/Yamamoto. He then received his 4th Dan on October 20th 1965, 5th Dan on June 10th 1969, 6th Dan on January 17th 1971, and 7th Dan on Feb 15th 1976. Foster was Yamamoto's representative in the U.S. during the mid 60’s. His mission was to expand the number of Yoshukai schools in America. Sensei Foster became the United States karate champion in kumite for the years 1966, 1967, 1968 and 1969. He was known as the Fighting Sensei. In 1971 Mamoru Yamamoto split from his instructor Dr. Tsuyoshi Chitose (10th Dan, the founder of Chito-Ryu Karate) and withdrew from the Japanese Chito-kai Karate Federation. Foster would follow Yamamoto until the late 70’s when he would move on to start his own association.
Karate ni sente nashi (空手に先手なし) is a teaching that has been passed down in Traditional Okinawan Karatedo for generations from Funakoshi, Miyagi, Mabuni and many others. The principle or idea of Jutsu-ri of waiting for the opponent to make the first move and responding accordingly or Uke sente – waiting to take the initiative.
Upper Left - Yasuhiro Konishi - Founder of Shindo Jinen Ryu
Upper Right - Tatsuo Yamada - Founder of Nihon Kempo Karate Do
Lower Left - Chojun Miyagi - Founder of Goju Ryu Karate Do
Lower Right - Gichin Funakoshi - Founder of Shotokan Karate Do
Gichin Funakoshi 船越 義珍
(November 10, 1868 – April 26, 1957) the founder of Shotokan Karate.
Funakoshi was the first to introduce karate-do to mainland Japan. In 1916 he gave a demonstration to the Butokuden in Kyoto, Japan, which at that time was the official center of all martial arts.
On March 6, 1921, the Crown Prince, who was later to become the Emperor of Japan, visited Okinawa and Master Funakoshi was asked to demonstrate karate.
In the early spring of 1922 Master Funakoshi traveled to Tokyo to present his art at the First National Athletic Exhibition in Tokyo organized by the Ministry of Education. He was strongly urged by several eminent groups and individuals to remain in Japan, and indeed he never did return to Okinawa.
Sensei Funakoshi taught only one method, a total discipline, which represented a synthesis of Okinawan karate styles. This method became known as Shotokan, literally the clan or the house of Shoto, which was the Master’s pen name for his poetry, denoting the sound of the wind blowing through pines.
Gichin Funakoshi adopted a uniform style similar to Kano's (Kodokan Judo) design. Over time, Karate practitioners modified the keikogi for karate by lightening weave of the fabric and adding strings to the inside of the jacket that are tied keep the jacket neatly closed. The jacket is also held closed by the belt or Obi.
The original Shotokan Dojo
Destroyed March 10, 1945 in a bombing raid on Tokyo
Funakoshi and Chitose
October 25, 1936 (11th year of Showa Era) at 4:00 p.m.
Showa Kaikan Hall, Naha City, Okinawa Prefecture
The Organizers: Ryukyu Shimpo Newspaper Company
Genwa Nakasone, Karate Kenkyusha (affiliated with Shudokan of Kanken Toyama)
Sensei Anko Itosu (with the glasses), pictured with some of his students including
Kenwa Mabuni (standing) & Gichin Funakoshi (to Itosu's left).
Ten Precepts of Karate
"Karate did not develop from Buddhism or Confucianism. In the past the Shorin school and the Shorei school were brought to Okinawa from China. Both of these schools have strong points, which I will now mention before there are too many changes:
1. Karate is not merely practiced for your own benefit: it can be used to protect one's family or master. It is not intended to be used against a single assailant but instead as a way of avoiding a fight should one be confronted by a villain or ruffian.
2. The purpose of karate is to make the muscles and bones hard as rock and to use the hands and legs as spears. If children were to begin training in Tang Te ('China Art' or 'China Hand') while in elementary school, then they will be well suited for military service. Remember the words attributed to the Duke of Wellington after he defeated Napoleon: "The Battle of Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton" or "our victory today was achieved in our school yards" or "tomorrows victory can come from today's playgrounds"
3. Karate cannot be quickly learned. Like a slow moving bull, it eventually travels a thousand miles. If one trains diligently everyday, then in three or four years one will come to understand karate. Those who train in this fashion will discover karate.
4. In karate, training of the hands and feet are important, so one must be thoroughly trained on the makiwara (striking post). In order to do this, drop your shoulders, open your lungs, take hold of your strength, grip the floor with your feet and sink your energy into your lower abdomen. Practice using each arm one to two hundred times each day.
5. When one practices the stances of Tang Te, be sure to keep your back straight, lower your shoulders, put strength in your legs, stand firmly and drop your energy into your lower abdomen.
6. Practice each of the techniques of karate repeatedly, the use of which is passed by word of mouth. Learn the explanations well and decide when and in what manner to apply them when needed. Enter, counter, release is the rule of releasing hand (tori-te).
7. You must decide if karate is for your health or to aid your duty.
8. When you train, do so as if on the battlefield. Your eyes should glare, shoulders drop, and body harden. You should always train with intensity and spirit and in this way you will naturally be ready.
9. One must not over train; this will cause you to lose the energy in your lower abdomen and will be harmful to your body. Your face and eyes will turn red. Train wisely.
10. In the past masters of karate have enjoyed long lives. Karate aids in developing the bones and muscles. It helps the digestion as well as the circulation. If karate should be introduced beginning in the elementary schools, then we will produce many men each capable of defeating ten assailants. I further believe this can be done by having all students at the Okinawa Teachers College practice Karate. In this way after graduation they can teach at the elementary schools that which they have been taught. I believe this will be a great benefit to our nation and our military. It is my hope you will seriously consider my suggestion."
Anko Itosu, October 1908
The makiwara is used by karate practitioners to practice strikes in much the same way as a boxer uses a heavy bag. The makiwara develops ones' striking ability by letting them experience resistance to punches, kicks and other strikes. It is also useful in the pre-training and conditioning of Tameshiwari.
There are generally two common classifications of breaks: speed breaks and power breaks.
(There are safety concerns with martial arts breaking, so one should always seek out an instructor. There are many small bones of the foot and hand which need to be very carefully and slowly conditioned for safety. Repeated damage to the extensor capsules of the knuckles can lead to long term problems with dexterity.)
In 1908, Anko Itosu sent a letter to the Prefectural Education Department concerning the introduction of karate to all Okinawan schools. It eventually spread to the Japanese mainland. The fourth point of his letter expressed the importance of makiwara training. Itosu wrote," The hands and feet are important so they should be trained thoroughly on the makiwara. In doing so, drop your shoulders, open your lungs, take hold of your strength, grip the floor with your feet, and sink your intrinsic energy to your lower abdomen. Practice with each arm one or two hundred times."
Funakoshi makiwara training
Tatsuo Shimabuku makiwara training
Choki Motobu makiwara training
For training, apart from the makiwara...
there is no need for any other equipment or even a partner or a large space.
This is one of the advantages of Karate.
Kyan was known in Okinawa as ‘Chan mig-wa’ or ‘small-eyed Kyan’. He studied Shuri-te from Sokon Matsumura and Anko Itosu and studied Tomari-te from Oyadomari Pechin, Maeda Pechin and Kosaku Matsumora. Kyan’s teaching became known as ‘Sukunaihayashi-ryu’. Kyan in the late 1940's to early 1950's, called his system Chan Migwha Te - using the nickname that had been given to Kyan Sensei.
Two of Chotoku Kyan’s top students were Ankichi Arakaki and Shimabuku.
"In the course of everyday training, it is necessary to strengthen yourbody, to practice punches and kicks, to learn how to move our limbs in a supple fashion, and how to move about freely, while understanding the principles of training well. By training for a long time in this manner, you will acquire subtle principles of application and know how to move suitable in every situation, which might arise. However, if you only train the physical technique without enlightening you spirit, which is fundamental, you will be unable to use the art. You must become clear-sighted in life and seek to develop modesty, a calm spirit, alertness, and bravery at the same times as you train in the physical techniques." Chotoku Kyan
At least 7 of the students of Kyan became instructors in their own right
and developed their own systems.
Kentsū Yabu September 23, 1866 - August 27, 1937 was a prominent teacher of Shōrin-ryū karate in Okinawa from the 1910s until the 1930s, and was among the first people to demonstrate karate in Hawaii. He gave two public demonstrations of Karate at the Nuuanu YMCA. Sensei Yabu received training in Shōrin-ryū karate by teachers both Matsumura Sōkon and Itosu Anko. Sensei Yabu was probably most famous for his many challenge matches, all without a single loss.
Some of Yabu's top students were Kanken Toyama, Chosin Chibana and Shinpan Gusukuma.
Matsubayashi-ryū ( Shorin Ryu) is a style of Okinawan karate that was founded in 1947
by Shōshin Nagamine (1907–1997).
Its curriculum includes 18 kata, seven two-man yakusoku kumite (prearranged sparring) routines, and kobudō (weapons) practice. Matsubayashi-ryu is one of the four main styles of karate on Okinawa today, and was one of the styles represented when the Okinawa Karate-do Federation was founded. It included the styles: Goju-ryu, Uechi-ryu, Shorin-ryu, and Matsubayashi-ryu.
Sensei Nagamine named his style in honor of the two masters whom he viewed as the most important masters that his teachings were based upon, Sōkon Matsumura of Shuri-te and Kosaku Matsumora of Tomari-te. He chose to name the school using the first kanji characters from both master's names Matsu (松) and the style is pronounced in Japanese "Matsubayashi"
Nagamine wrote two books in Japanese, The Essence of Okinawan Karate-Do and
Tales of Okinawa's Great Masters.
Under the conviction that togetherness of Zen and Karate is the one and only way to master the real way of Karate, and hoping that many a young Karate experts be nurtured,
I am enjoying Karateman's life, with the spirit of wholeheartedness
Grand Master Shoshin Nagamine
Ansei Ueshiro (April 20, 1933 - May 11, 2002) was an influential Okinawan martial artist. Born in Kin, Okinawa, Ueshiro relocated to the United States in 1962 at the request of founder Shōshin Nagamine of Matsubayashi Shōrin-ryū, under whom he had studied, for the purpose of spreading the martial art. He founded Shorin-Ryu Karate USA and, according to that organization's official website, "was one of the first Oriental martial artists to bring karate" to the US.
James Wax and Ansei Ueshiro
James Wax, First non-Okinawan to receive a Black belt from Shoshin Nagamine in Matsubayashi-Ryu.
James Wax, Robert Yarnall and many of the original American students in the U.S. helped Hanshi Ueshiro establish himself in America.
“I am going to teach karate to the American people the way it was taught to me.”
Master Ansei Ueshiro, Sept. 9, 1962
Chōmo Hanashiro Shorin Ryu Karate
Hanashiro was born in 1869 and at an early age began training with the man many consider to be the greatest of all Tote masters, Matsumura Sokon (1809-1901), well known as "Bushi" Matsumura. Matsumura was quite an old man at the time and Hanashiro was primarily a student of one of Matsumura's senior students, Itosu Anko (1830-1915). Itosu shaped modern karate as much as any other person in history and spearheaded a movement to bring Tote into the Okinawan school system around the turn of the century. Hanashiro remained with Itosu, and acted as an assistant instructor for him up until his death in 1915. From early in the 20th century, Hanashiro taught gymnastics at a junior high school in Shuri (Okinawa's capital) which gave him an excellent opportunity to aid Itosu in the introduction of Tote into the school system.
In the 1920's, Hanashiro Chomo was one of the most highly regarded karate masters in Okinawa, a fact that was acknowledged even by other masters. Despite this, information about him is rare in English language texts, and is usually scattered in existing references.
It is difficult to talk about the life of Hanashiro Chomo without also talking about another of Itosu's senior students and assistants, Yabu Kentsu (1863-1937), also originally a student of Matsumura. Yabu was probably most famous for his many challenge matches, all without a single loss.
These two shared many common experiences and have remarkably similar karate careers. Both were noted as having exceptional physiques in the 1891 Japanese army draft's medical exams. They were both pioneers in instructing karate in the school system in the first decade of the 20th century, and also taught Tote in military schools. Both were also present at the famous Oct. 25th, 1936 meeting of Okinawan Masters. At this meeting, attended by the greatest masters of the time, the name "karate do" was officially adopted over "Tote Jutsu". A photo of members of the meeting can be found on Page 7 of the Old Canadian Chito Ryu Technical Manual and many other karate history books. Yabu and Hanashiro are in the middle of the bottom row, O-Sensei is 2nd from the left in the top row.
An interesting story that demonstrates the association of Hanashiro and his dojo-mate Yabu well into their lives comes from Nagamine Shoshin (1907-1998), founder of Matsubayashi Ryu (a well known branch of shorin ryu), and author of "The Essence of Okinawan Karate-do". While studying at the Metropolitan Police Station in Tokyo in 1936, Nagamine met with Hanashiro Chomo and Kentsu Yabu who warned him that the karate katas in Tokyo had changed considerably and that Nagamine should take pains to keep the katas he taught in their original forms. I find this interesting, as Nagamine met with both masters at the same time, 50 years after they were dojo mates at Bushi Matsumura's dojo. Obviously the two were very close.
Hanashiro was not only a pioneer in the school system, but he also pioneered the use of the word "karate". In his August 1905 publication, "Karate Shoshu Hen" (AKA "Karate Kumite"), the first known use of the modern kanji was used.
The original two characters for the art were pronounced Tote meaning, "China Hand." The first character, however, could also be pronounced "kara." This character was changed to another that had the same pronunciation ("kara"). Thus the modern term "Karate-te (empty hand) appeared
Hanashiro was one of the primary instructors for an organization formed in the early 1920's in Okinawa called the Ryukyu Tote Kenkyukai (Okinawan Tote Research Club). The club was an expansion of an earlier organization formed in 1918 by Miyagi Chojun, a famous Tote expert and founder of Goju Ryu. Originally the organization was meant to continue the teachings of Itosu Anko, Higashionna Kanryo and Aragaki Seisho, the last generation of masters who had died between 1915 and 1918, leaving a great void.
Within this club, Okinawa's greatest masters hung around together, taught Tote and exchanged ideas. Hanashiro Chomo wasn't the only teacher; others included Miyagi Chojun (the original organizer), Mabuni Kenwa (founder of Shito Ryu), Motobu Choyu (one of O-Sensei Chitose's teachers, his teachings eventually became Motobu Ryu, a martial art called Te, precursor to Okinawan Tote). Unfortunately, the Kenkyukai disbanded in the late 1920's.
Hanashiro Chomo had a few famous students. Of particular note are Nakamura Shigeru (1892/95-1969 of Okinawan Kempo), Chitose Tsuyoshi (1898-1984, founder Chito Ryu), Nakama Chozo (1899-1982, of Kobayashi Ryu), Shimabukuro Zenryo (1904-1969, founder of Seibukan Shorin Ryu) and Kinjo Hiroshi (1919-)
Ankichi Aragaki (1899-1927) studied with Chomo Hanashiro, Chosin Chibana, and Chotoku Kyan. He inspired Shoshin Nagamine in many ways, including his insight into Okinawa's unique cultural heritage and his understanding of karate. He was a proponent of the toe tip or spear foot version of the mae-geri (front kick).
One of Aragaki's most famous matches, when he was 19 he entered a sumo tournament and defeated a giant wrestler from the village of Yomitan. Aragaki died at the young age of 28 from ulcers.
One of his final students was Shoshin Nagamine who went on to start the matsubayashi branch of Shorin-Ryu.
He was born in Toribori, Syuri in 1885. His uncle, Chosyo Chibana who was one of the Karate master learned Karate under Sokon Matsumura and was the family head of Chibanas. Chibanas were one of the relatives of the royal family.
He studied under Itosu for 13 years.
The fifth son of King Shoshitsu was the progenitor of Chibana family. Their house was called Castle of Chibanas. Choyu Motobu and Choki Motobu were their relatives.
Front row from left: Yagi Meitoku (Gōjū-ryū), Nagamine Shōshin (Matsubayashi-ryū), Kinjō Hiroshi (Nihon Karate-dō Kenshūkai Sō-shihan), Chibana Chōshin (Shōrin-ryū), Higa Seikō (Gōjū-ryū), Higa Yūchoku (Shōrin-ryū). Second row from left: Fukuchi Seikō (Gōjū-ryū), Uechi Kan’ei (Uechi-ryū), Miyahira Katsuya (Shōrin-ryū), and Gushi Jokei (Matsubayashi-ryū). Back row, 4th from the left is Nakazato Shugoro (Shorin-ryū), to his right is Tomoyose Ryūkō (Uechi-ryū),and at the right end is Toguchi Seikichi (Gōjū-ryū).
Choshin Chibana was the originator of the Shorin Ryu. He made his own group named Shorinkan (1933).
Kenwa Mabuni Sensei was the ichiban-deshi of Itosu Sensei, suceeding him as the second master of Itosu-Kai.
Upon hearing of Master Itosu's death in 1915, Kenwa Mabuni was so upset that legend indicates he built a shrine in front of Master Itosu's grave and looked after the grave marker. He would come to the grave site and diligently practice his kata daily, for over a year, to pay respect and honor to the great master.
Shitō-ryū 糸東流 was founded in 1931 by Kenwa Mabuni
(left to right) Toyama Kanken, Ohtsuka Hironori, Shimoda Takeshi, Funakoshi Gichin, Motobu Choki, Mabuni Kenwa, Nakasone Genwa and Taira Shinken (Tokyo 1930s)
Go Kenki/Wu Xianghui (1886-1940)
(Go Kenki in neko ashi dachi, Mabuni Kenwa observes in the background)
Go Kenki was a naturalized person from China, and his martial arts lines are of Crane Kung-Fu. Miyagi Chojun was always interested in this technique.
A young Miyagi (left) performing Crane technique
His strong influence can be seen in Tensyo and Suparinpei. The “Kakufa” kata from Go Kenki is maintained in Higa Seko’s Goju-ryu as a secret Kata.
Okinawan students of Go Ken Ki performing White Crane boxing.
Go Kenki taught several of the following forms (kata)
Hironori Ōtsuka (right) combined Yōshin-ryū Jujitsu with Okinawan Karate and developed his Wado Ryu.
Hironori Ohtsuka registered his own style of Karate, which he called "Wado Ryu" and was recognized as an independent style. However, its origins were developed by Ohtsuka's continuous study of all martial arts, formulating the "Wado" techniques by combining his own innovations and natural movements found in the other martial arts. Ohtsuka Sensei's personalised style of Karate was officially registered in 1938 after he was awarded the rank of "Renshi-go". He presented a magnificent demonstration of "Wado" Karate for the Japan Martial Arts Federation who were impressed with his style and commitment and successfully acknowledged him as a high ranking instructor. The next year the Japan Martial Arts Federation asked all the different styles of Karate to register their names. Ohtsuka registered the name of "Wado-Ryu". Other styles to register included Shotokan Ryu, Goju Ryu and Shito-Ryu. The next few years witnessed Wado Ryu karate growing from strength to strength, new dojos were opening and karate was being taught at the Universities. Ohtsuka himself was becoming a recognised figure within the World of Martial Arts.
On the 1st April 1897 Ohtsuka started school where he studied Shindo Yoshin Ryu Jujitsu, under the supervision of Shinzaburo Nakayama Sensei, the third Grand Master of this style of Jujitsu. Ohtsuka Sensei had studied all the Katas that Funakoshi had brought from Okinawa, although he found certain movements and techniques difficult to implement and understand. This led Ohtsuka in his search for a deeper understanding of Karate to practice Kata with Mabuni Sensei the founder of Shuto-Ryu Karate.
He was born May 25, 1889 in Nishihara, Okinawa. He died November 30, 1982 in Nishihara, Okinawa.
He was the nephew of Nabe Matsumura, grandson of Matsumura Sōkon. He began karate training at 13 under his uncle.
Among his students were Seiki Arakaki, Kohana Nakazato, Inoue, Masaya Kyan, Nishihira Kosei, Yuichi Kuda, and Fusei Kise. Takaya Yabiku.
Unlike Itosu, Soken Hohan was very selective in his students as he wanted to keep the teachings true to tradition.
(Back row, from left) Arakaki Seiki (Matsumura shorin-ryu), Kouchi Katsuhide (Chubu Shorin-ryu),
(Front row, from left) Miyagi Tokumasa, Akamine Eisuke (Ryukyu Kobudo Hozon Shinkokai),
(Note) Higa Yuchoku (Shorin-ryu) could not participate.
Tatsuo Shimabuku (島袋 龍夫; September 19, 1908 – May 30, 1975)
Shimabuku changed his name to “Tatsuo,” meaning “Dragon Man.”
Shimabuku studied Shuri-te karate (Shorin-ryu) under Chotoku Kyan in the village of Kadena. He began his training with Kyan in 1932, at Kyan's home. Kyan also taught at the Okinawa Prefectural Agricultural School. Within a short time, Shimabuku became one of Kyan's best students and learned the kata: Seisan, Naihanchi, Wansu, Chinto and Kusanku, along with the weapons kata Tokumine-no-kun and basic Sai. He also began his study of "Ki" (or "Chinkuchi; (チンクチ)" in the Okinawan dialect) for which Kyan was most well known. Shimabuku studied with Kyan until 1936. He always considered Kyan his first formal Sensei and was very loyal to him.
Shimabuku had always been fascinated by Naha-te karate (Goju Ryu) and sought out Chojun Miyagi, the founder of Goju Ryu. Miyagi's teacher had been Higaonna Kanryo who brought from China a derivative of Kenpo (拳法) called 'kin gai'. Pangai Noon was the bearer of Uechi-ryu from China to Okinawa. Eventually this became Naha-te. From Miyagi, Tatsuo learned Seiunchin ("Seize-Control-Fight") kata and Sanchin ("Three-Fights/Conflicts") kata.
After studying with Miyagi, Shimabuku, in 1938, sought out another famous Shorin-Ryu instructor, Choki Motobu, who was probably the most colorful of all of Shimabuku's instructors. Motobu had had many teachers for short periods of time, including some notable ones such as Anko Itosu (Shuri-te) and Kosaku Matsumora (Tomari-te). Motobu was known for often getting into street fights in his youth to promote the effectiveness of karate. Shimabuku studied with Motobu for approximately one year.
Shimabuku opened his first dojo in 1946 after the war in the village of Konbu, near Tengan village.
In 1955, Shimabuku fell asleep and dreamed of the goddess Isshinryu no Megami (Mizu,Goddess of Isshinryu). Three Stars appeared, symbolizing the three styles Isshin-ryu derived from, Goju-Ryu, Shorin-Ryu, and Kobudo. The stars might also have represented the Physical, Mental, and Spiritual strength needed for Isshin-ryu. The gray evening sky symbolized serenity, and implied that karate was to be used only for self-defense.
Isshin Ryu translates as, "One Heart Method " or "One Heart Way"
Shimabuku disagreed with the twist punch theory. In his opinion, faster was better as long as there was power. He learned from shorin-ryu that punching from the hip, using a rising punch and hip rotation, gave one a stronger punch. From goju-ryu, he found that by proper breathing he could bring out even greater energy. The basic isshin-ryu punching method included punching from the hip without a twist, but use a rising punch, and utilizing hip rotation and proper breathing.
Kanryo Higaonna 1851 - 1915
Higaonna began his martial arts training in 1867 in Monk Fist Boxing (Lohan Quan) from Aragaki Seisho. He also studied various forms of Crane Gung Fu and herbology and Chinese medicine, including acupuncture. Kanryo Higaonna was introduced to the well renowned martial arts instructor Ryu Ryu Ko. Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei was tall and strong, and even at his old age his speed and power was admirable. Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei worked in bamboo, his shop on the first floor of the building and his house on the second floor. He taught martial arts at his house only to a small group of selected students.
Kanryu Higaonna had three famous students-
Juhatsu Kyodo (eldest), Chojun Miyagi, and Seko Higa.
In the beginning, Kanryo Higaonna only performed duties in the yard of Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei and sometimes in his shop before he decided to start to teach him the martial arts. At first Kanryo Higaonna was instructed only in Sanchin kata. His motivation and dedication soon started to show up in the progress of his skills, and he became "uchi deshi" (live-in student). He moved out from the Ryukyu Kan and started to live and work at Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei's bamboo shop. He was introduced to traditional equipment such as chiishi, ishi sashi, nigiri game, tan and muning (variation of makiwara). The training was very severe. Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei learned the martial arts in the southern Shaolin temple in the mountains of the Fujian Province. His teacher was a Court Official from the Dynasty. Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei also instructed Kanryo Higaonna in the use of weapons such the Daito (long sword), Shuto (small sword), Sai and Bo. He also taught him herbal medicine. In a few years, Kanryo Higaonna became Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei's top student. Kanryo Higaonna practiced 14 years in China until Ryu Ryu Ko Sensei told him that it was time for him to go back home. In 1881, he began teaching in Okinawa where his martial arts would become known as Naha-te, though he always referred to it as chuanfa. Kanryo Higaonna is now bestowed with the title "Kensei (sacred fists) Kanryo Higaonna". Kanryo Higaonna's whole life was devoted to Karate.
Chojun Miyagi (successor to Higaonna) said of Higaonna, "My Sensei possessed incredible strength; the severity of the training he underwent in China is beyond comprehension....Kanryo Sensei's speed and power were truly superhuman; his hands and feet moved faster than lightning".
Miyagi Chojun, Founder of Goju ryu. Miyagi began his study in Budo at the age of 12. He first learned martial arts from Aragaki Ryuko in 1900. Aragaki Sensei taught him Yobi-undo, Kigu hojo undo and kihon waza. After two years training period, Aragaki Sensei introduced him to Higaonna Kanryo Sensei learning the complex system of Naha-te.
In 1934, Chojun Miyagi visited Hawaii and taught at Prof. Okazaki’s dojo during his visit.
"When delivering a punch, if the recoil is lacking in strength, it is no good. A straight punch is not just delivered as a straight punch. It is the same as in brush writing--a straight is not simply drawn as a straight line." Miyagi Sensei Goju Ryu"
Yamaguchi Gogen “The Cat”
Yamaguchi founded Japanese Goju-Ryu. Among the many famous martial artists who were influenced by his teachings was Mas Oyama.
Jitsumi Gōgen Yamaguchi (The Cat) executing a yoko geri against son, Goshi Hirofumi Yamaguchi (circa 1949).
Goshi is the President of the International Karate-dō Gōjū-kai.
"The five secrets of karate are: move quickly,
have a sound and calm mind,
be light in body,
have a clever mind,
and master the basics."
Peter Urban, helped introduce Goju-ryu into the United States, but later broke away from Yamaguchi, to found his own American Goju -Ryu Association.
Another American Goju Ryu pioneer, Lou Angel, a student and Nidan, of Peter Urban brought Goju to Oklahoma. He would found the Midwest Goju Karate Association.
Gogen Yamaguchi promoted Lou Angel to Sandan, thrird degree black belt at the Ueno Dojo in Tokyo Japan, September 1963
Shorei Kan Karate
In 1930, at the age of 15, Seikichi Toguchi began his lifelong study of Gōjū-ryū karate at the dojo of Sekō Higa and later under Chojun Miyagi as one of his principal students. He studied under Higa for over 33 years and under Miyagi for more than 25 years.
In 1954 Toguchi opened up the first Shorei-kan dojo (House of politeness and respect) in Koza City, Okinawa.
Toguchi Sensei died at the age of 81. He was the last living Okinawan to receive the title of bushi.
Takayuki Kubota, born September 20, 1934, is a Japanese master of karate. He founded the Gosoku-ryu style of karate, and is the founder and president of the International Karate Association. Kubota holds the title of Sōke for his development of the Gosoku-ryū style of karate. He is also the inventor and holder of the trademark of the Kubotan self-defense key chain.
Kyokushin karate, founded in 1964 by Korean-Japanese karate master, Masutatsu Oyama. Kyokushin is a combination of Oyama's study of Shotokan, Goju Ryu, Judo and Daito Ryu AikiJutsu. Osu
Bobby Lowe (left) sparring with Mas Oyama (right)
Edward "Bobby" Lowe learned Kung Fu from his father, an instructor of Sil Lum Pai. He also studied Kodenkan Judo of Henry Seishiro Okazaki, and eventually became a student of Masayoshi James Mitose. Bobby Lowe was one of only a few students to earn a black belt from James Mitose ( others were Thomas S. H. Young, William K. S. Chow, Jiro Nakamura, Arthur Keawe, and Paul Yamaguchi).
Lowe and Paul Yamaguchi also practiced with Seishin Uehara (1901-1956), one of Hawaii's Okinawan Karate Sensei and Sumo referee.
Bobby Lowe met Oyama at a demonstration in 1952 in Hawaii. From late 1952 to early 1954, Lowe trained daily under Oyama. Oyama promoted him to the rank of 1st dan in 1953. In 1957, Lowe opened the first Kyokushin dojo outside Japan in Hawaii. Oyama promoted him to 4th dan in 1957, 5th dan in 1965, 7th dan in December 1976, and 8th dan in October 1984.
(August 23, 1929 – September 14, 2011)
I first went to Japan in 1952, at that time training was called Goshin Jitsu. I was taught from the very beginning that when you are learning your basic's you should train as if you are really in a fight; every movement has a purpose. Therefore you must keep in mind when training that every movement has a bunkai. Bobby Lowe
Walter Kenmotsu Nishioka
Born in the Kahili district of Honolulu, Hawaii, on June 18, 1932, into a family already well versed in the martial arts. His father, Hikoki Nishioka, was a renowned jujitsu practitioner who ...had trained Imperial Marines in Japan before immigrating to Hawaii from Kamamashiki City in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan. His mother Kiyo, also came from Kumamoto, Japan. Naturally, Walter Nishioka started learning jujitsu from his father at an early age.
Shihan's first formal exposure to the martial arts was at the age of eight. In 1940 he became a student of Professor Henry Seishiro Okazaki who ran the Nikko Sanitarium and oversaw activities at the Kodenkan. The Kodenkan dojo was located in the Alapai district of Honolulu. At that time, Professor Okazaki, a noted honitsugi (chiropractor), was the foremost instructor of Jujitsu. He had the largest, and only, school in the Territory of Hawaii. In 1948, at sixteen years of age, Shihan received his shodan from Professor Okazaki. Shihan studied jujitsu continuously for a period of ten years, from 1940 until 1950. During that time, at his father's request, he studied kendo, yawara, and karate with one of Okazaki's instructors, Hamamoto Sensei.
According to Nishioka, after receiving his shodan from Okazaki, he decided that Karate was his chosen art. Back then, those under the age of an adult could not wear a full black belt so he was given a half black and a half white belt, a tradition still honored by the IKL. Shiroma and the IKL still host one of the largest Karate Tournaments in Hawaii. The tournament is held in Kailua-Kona.
Julian Shiroma is the head of all Hawaii based schools of the IKL. Craig Hamakawa (Hanshi - Hachidan) of San Francisco, is the head of Mainland Schools. - AJI VP Danny Saragosa
Kamesuke Higashionna 1904 - 1968
(Higashionna Kamesuke; also known as Higaonna Kamesuke, Hiroshi Higashionna, and Hiroshi Higaonna.) was a Japanese Karate Sensei.
He was a student of Motobu Chōki among others and came to Hawaii on August 18, 1933, accompanied by Mutsu Mizuho.
Mutsu Mizuho 1898 - 1970
He was a student of Gichin Funakoshi (founder of ShotokanKarate) and Oshiro Chojo.
Mutsu Mizuho is a founding member of the Hawaii Karate Seinenkai in Hawaii.
Mutsu Mizuho (formerly known as Takada) was a shihan at Karate Kenkyu-kai between April 1933 and February 1936.
Advertisement of exhibition at the "Young Hotel" in Hawaii
The attacker moves first maintaining the principle of Karate No Sente Nashi.
Here are the technique practices described by Mutsu.
Reactive Defense, or the art of not being there when attacked using 5 training principles.
1. Attacker leads with a left lunge punch to the head and then follows with a right front kick
a. Defender steps back with the right foot, away from the punch.
b. Defender steps back with the left foot, away from the kick.
2. Attacker leads with a left lunge punch to the head and then follows with a right front kick
a. Defender leans slightly back moving the head just beyond the punch.
b. Defender skips slightly back moving the body just beyond the kick.
3. Attacker leads with a left lunge punch to the head
a. Defender steps forward with the left, slipping inside the strike and striking upward into the attacker’s chest with a reverse punch.
4. Attacker leads with a left lunge punch to the head
a. Defender steps forward with the left, slipping inside the strike and striking to the solar plexus with a left lead punch
5. Attacker steps with the right and throws a left reverse punch to the head
a. Defender steps right foot forward slipping the attackers punch to the outside
b. (Alternate) Defender steps left foot forward slipping the attackers punch to the outside.
Preemptive Striking building upon the principles of Reactive Defense or the art of Counter Strikingagainst the attack.
1. Attacker leads with a left lunge punch to the head
a. Step back with your right foot and lean your head away from the strike
b. (Alternate) Step in with your left foot and strike their head with your left hand
2. Attacker steps with their left and throws a right reverse punch to the head
a. Step in with your left, and slightly rotate your body counter-clockwise and slip inside of their punch
b. (Alternate) Step in with your left and slightly rotate your body clockwise and slip inside of their punch and strike their solar plexus with a short left lead punch
c. (Alternate) Step in with your left, and slightly rotate your body counter-clockwise and slip inside of their punch and strike their solar plexus with a right reverse punch
d. (Alternate) Step in with your left and strike their head with a right reverse punch
e. (Alternate- drawing not shown) Step in with your left, and slightly rotate your body clockwise and slip inside of their punch and strike their solar plexus with a right uppercut
3. Attacker steps with their left and throws a right reverse punch to the head
a. Lunge forward with the left foot and left lunge punch their solar plexus
b. Lunge forward with the left foot and right reverse punch their solar plexus
There is a difference between techniques 2 and 3 is that the 3rd section is done without slipping
Rotation of the body and though the attacker begins their strike the lunge gets the defender there first.
4. Attacker steps with their left and throws a left lead punch to the head
a. Step forward with the right foot slipping inside of the punch and beginning a right lead punch to the solar plexus
b. (Alternate) Step forward with the right foot slipping inside of the punch and throw a right roundhouse punch under and around the striking arm to hit their head
c. (Alternate) Step forward with the right foot slipping inside of the punch and throw a right uppercut to their solar plexus
5. Attacker steps with their left and throws a left lead punch to the head
a. Step back with your right, rotate your body clockwise and slip their punch on the outside
b. (Alternate) Step back with your right, rotate your body clockwise and slip their punch on the outside as you left uppercut into their armpit
c. (Alternate) Step back with your right, rotate your body clockwise and slip their punch on the outside as you left uppercut into their face on the inside of their strike
d. (Alternate) Step back with your right, rotate your body clockwise and slip their punch on the outside as you left lunge punch into their face on the inside of their strike
6. Attacker steps with their left and throws a left lead punch to the head
a. Lunge forward with your left as you drop your right knee to drop your center and left lead punch to their solar plexus
b. (Alternate) Lunge forward with your left and throw your right punch to their head sliding the punch on top of their striking arm
c. (Alternate- drawing not shown) Lunge forward with your left as you drop your right knee to drop your center and right reverse punch their solar plexus
7. Attacker steps with their left and throws a left lead punch to the head
a. Lunge forward with your left as you drop your right knee to drop your center slipping inside their strike
b. (Alternate) Step forward with your left foot and strike their head with your left hand
8. Attacker steps with their left and throws a right reverse punch to the head
a. Lunge forward with your left, rotate your upper body clockwise and slip their strike
b. (Alternate) Lunge forward with your left, rotate your upper body clockwise and strike their solar plexus with a left uppercut
9. Attacker steps with their left and throws a right reverse punch to the head
a. Step back with your right and lean your upper body away from their strike
b. (Alternate) Step back with your right and strike their head with a left lead punch
c. (Alternate) Step back with your right and strike their solar plexus with a left reverse punch
10. Attacker steps with their left and throws a left lead punch to the head
a. Step forward with the left foot slipping outside of their strike
b. (Alternate) Slide the right foot over and rotate counter-clockwise, outside of their strike, and throw a right hook punch to the rear of their head
c. (Alternate) Slide the right foot over and rotate counter-clockwise, outside of their strike, and throw a right reverse punch to their back (likely a kidney punch)
11. Attacker steps with their left and throws a right reverse punch to the head
a. Slide the right foot clockwise and rotate your body to slip outside their strike
b. (Alternate) slide your right foot back and strike to their head with a reverse punch
12. Attacker steps with their left and throws a right reverse punch to the head
a. Step forward with you left foot so your head slips outside their strike and execute a left reverse punch to their solar plexus (under their striking arm)
b. (Alternate) Step forward with you left foot so your head slips outside their strike and execute a right reverse punch to their head
c. (Alternate) Step forward with you left foot so your head slips outside their strike and execute a left uppercut to their jaw (under their striking arm)
Uechi-ryu is a traditional style of Okinawan karate. The founder of Uechi Ryū was Kanbun Uechi (1877–1948).
Uechi-ryū means "Style of Uechi" or "School of Uechi".
Kanbun Uechi studied Pangai-noon (half-hard, half-soft) under Shushiwa in the Fukien province of mainland China.
There are eight empty-hand katas in Uechi-Ryū. Only Sanchin, Seisan, and Sanseirui come from Pangai-noon; the others were added to the style by Kanei Uechi. Kanei Uechi designed all of the additional kata. Many of the names of the newer kata were formed from the names of prominent figures in the art, e.g. Kanshiwa fromKanbun and Sushiwa. The current list of empty-hand kata is:
- Sanseirui (also known as Sandairyu)
The Sanchin kata is deceptively simple in appearance. It teaches the foundation of the style, including stances and breathing. Kanbun Uechi is quoted as saying...
"All is in Sanchin." Though it is not difficult to learn the movements of Sanchin, to master the form is thought to take a lifetime.
Shinyu Gushi Sensei, Uechi Ryu
The Nigiri Game are gripping jars that vary in size and design. They are normally filled with sand or gravel to alter the weight as preferred. The jars are to be gripped with the tips of the fingers and then the inside of the second joint of the thumb. It may be gripped by all of the fingers if necessary and by the lips themselves. In Okinawan karate, this type of training is largely associated with Goju-Ryu and Uechi-Ryu, although it is found in some Shorin groups.
Hojo undō (補助運動) translated as "supplementary exercises"
such as Nigiri Game, Chi Ishi, Jari bako and Makiwara.
Kongoken: Miyagi Sensei was introduced to the practice of kongoken in one of his visits to teach in Hawaii. Kongoken is a hojo undo equipment that permits individual training, as well as training with a partner. The form and weight of kongoken is very beneficial to develop a strong body and powerful grappling techniques.
Motobu Choyu (1857-1928)
Motobu Choyu was a member of the royal family in Okinawa. This means he had access to many great masters of excellent studies, martial arts and arts from an early age. Moreover, he was a great master of “Udon-di” that was handed down through the royal family.
Motobu Choyu formed the Okinawa Karate Research Club in 1923 as a joint Karate research organization. As a result, a lot of famous Karate masters participated in the club. It so happens that Miyagi Chojun and Mabuni Kenwa took active rolls as members of the club staff.
Choki Motobu referred to his art as Kempo and was very much a specialist in the use of unusual fists associated with Okinawan Karate. His favorite technique was the Ippon Ken Zuki, forefinger knuckle fist thrust, which he had developed to a very powerful level. It was said that he could actually strike a Makiwara full power with this weapon. In his famous battle with the European heavyweight boxing champion, it is believed that this was the punch which knocked the opponent out.
Choki Motobu taught many students during his long lifetime of seventy three years. Among his students were; James Masayoshi Mitose, Yasuhiro Konishi, Tatsuo Yamada, Shoshin Nagamine, Shinsuke Kaneshima, Yukimori Kuniba, Shinyei Kaneshima, Katsuya Miyahira, Chozo Nakama, Tsuyoshi Chitose, Tatsuo Shimabuku. Eizo Shimabuku, and Shigeru Nakamura. Among the many styles which are directly influenced by what Choki Motobu taught, especially in regard to Kihon Kumite and an intelligent application of techniques in Jissen, real fighting, are; Shorei Goju Ryu, Shuri Ryu, (Koga Ha) Kosho Shorei Ryu, Yamada Ryu, Isshin Ryu, Tozan Ryu, Shobayashi Shorin Ryu, Matsubayashi Shorin Ryu, Kobayashi Shorin Ryu, Chito Ryu, Nakamura's Okinawan Kempo, Ishimine Ryu, Shinto Shizen Ryu, Motobu Ha Shito Ryu, and Kenshinkan Ryu
1. Everything is natural, and changing.
2. Kamae is in the heart, not a physical manifestation.
3. One must develop the ability to read how much striking power any person has in one glance.
4. One does not have to take care to block every single attack by an opponent with weak striking power.
5. One must develop the ability to deflect an attack even from behind.
6. In a real confrontation, more than anything else one should strike to the face first, as this is the most effective.
7. Kicks are not all that effective in a real confrontation.
8.”Karate IS Sente” (Here, sente means the initiative, or the first move. c.f. Karate ni Sente Nashi – there is no first move in karate).
9. The position of the legs and hips in Naifuanchin no Kata is the basics of karate.
10. Twisting to the left or right from the Naifuanchin stance will give you the stance used in a real confrontation. Twisting ones way of thinking about Naifuanchin left and right, the various meanings in each movement of the kata will also become clear.
11. One must always try and block the attack at its source (i.e. block not the attacking hand, but deeper on the arm).
12. The blocking hand must be able to become the attacking hand in an instant. Blocking with one hand and then countering with the other is not true bujutsu. Real bujutsu presses forward and blocks and counters in the same motion.
13. One cannot use continuous attacks against true karate. That is because the blocks of true karate make it impossible for the opponent to launch a second attack.
14. I still do not yet know the best way to punch the makiwara.
15. It’s interesting, but when I just think about performing a kata, when I’m seated, I break a sweat.
16. When punching to the face, one must thrust as if punching through to the back of the head.
17. When fighting a boxer, it is better to go with his flow, and take up a rhythm with both of your hands.
18. It is necessary to drink alcohol and pursue other fun human activities. The art of someone who is too serious has no “flavour.”
19. It is OK to take two steps forward or back in the same kamae, but over three steps, one must change the position (facing) of their guard.
20. When I fought the foreign boxer in Kyoto, he was taller than me so I jumped up and punched him in the face. This is effective against people who are taller than you.
21. I started having real fights at Tsuji when I was young, and fought over 100 of them, but I was never hit in the face.
22. When I was 4, I was made to go to a school, but I hated studying, so I often skipped class and played somewhere with my friends.
23. When I was still in Okinawa, Kano Jigoro of the Kodokan visited and asked to talk with me, and through a friend we went to a certain restaurant. Mr. Kano talked about a lot of things, but about karate, he asked me what I would do if my punch missed. I answered that I would immediately follow with an elbow strike from that motion. After that, he became very quiet and asked nothing more about karate.
24. There are no stances such as neko-ashi, zenkutsu or kokutsu in my karate. Neko-ashi is a form of “floating foot” which is considered very bad in bujutsu. If one receives a body strike, one will be thrown off balance. Zenkutsu and kokutsu are unnatural, and prevent free leg movement. The stance in my karate, whether in kata or kumite, is like Naifuanchin, with the knees slightly bent, and the footwork is free. When defending or attacking, I tighten the knees and drop the hips, but I do not put my weight on either front or back foot, rather keeping it evenly distributed.
25. When blocking kicks, one must block as if trying to break the opponent’s shin.
26. When I came to Tokyo, there was another Okinawan who was teaching karate there quite actively. When in Okinawa I hadn’t even heard his name. Upon the guidance of another Okinawan, I went to the place he was teaching youngsters, where he was running his mouth, bragging. Upon seeing this, I grabbed his hand, took up the position of “kake-kumite” and said “What will you do?” He was hesitant, and I thought to punch him would be too much, so I threw him with “kote-gaeshi” at which he fell to the ground with a thud. He got up, his face red, and said “once more” so we took up the position of kake-kumite again. And again I threw him with kote-gaeshi. He did not relent and asked for another bout, so he was thrown the same way for a third time.
There are three styles that reportedly were created by Choki Motobu and in some cases are suppose to have been passed on to certain individuals. According to Robert Trias, Choki Motobu created the Shorei Ryu style and this was passed on to him through a Chinese master after World War II. Trias modified the system by adding certain Goju Ryu Kata to the curriculum, thus creating his own style of Shorei Goju Ryu Karate.
There were only six Chief Instructors in the Shuri-Ryu system all personally trained and appointed by Grand Master Trias. Only these six men wear this emblem with the red sun. Everything about this emblem has a significant meaning. For instance the three roots of the pine tree signify power, speed & form (body, mind and spirit). The trunk of the tree represents strength, longevity, & endurance. The branches of the tree represent growth and the 12 meridians that flow through the body (Chi). The individual branches refer to belt levels the bottom being white and the top being Black Belt level. The needles represent Progress. The red sun and border represents Courage. The sun gives life to the system. The black represents Steadfastness. The green, everlasting nature and harmony. Shu means to learn from tradition, Ri means to transcend all human ability, and Ryu means school or way. The circular shape represents the circular techniques in the Shuri-Ryu system.
All other Black Belts wear this patch without the red sun and a black border. The Kyu ranks wear this patch with no sun, the pine tree, letters and border are white. The white represents purity.
Choki Motobu Timeline
1870 Born on April 5
1921 Moved to Osaka, Mainland
1922 Brief Return to Okinawa (Meeting & Training with Seikichi Uehara**) 1923 to 1924 (Nov.)
Knocked-Out John Kentel (6 ft. European Boxer)w/knuckle strike, behind his ear.
1925 Article published in King's # Magazine depicting Gichen Funakoshi instead of Motobu, Sensei.
(No effort was made to rectify this wrong doing and apologies were never expressed)
1924 to 1926 Moved to Tokyo : Opened "Daidokan Dojo"
1930 In A 'friendly' face-off with Gichen Funakoshi Motobu Sensei executed an ashi-barai, throwing him on the ground, stopping A punch to Gichen's face. (Tokyo, Japan)
1936 October 25, Master's Ryukyu Shimpo (Symposium on Okinawa)
1941 Closed Daidokan Dojo & Moved to Osaka
1942 Moved Back to Okinawa Prefecture
1944 Died on April 15 (age 74).
Shuri Ryu was also attributed to Choki Motobu by Yasuhiro Konishi who eventually passed the system on to Robert Trias, as the man most preserving Motobu's art.
It incorporates elements of karate, aikido, jujitsu and kendo in its curriculum and also emphasizes both philosophy and education. The strong influences of both Gichin Funakoshi and Kenwa Mabuni are apparent in the style. The catalog of stances and techniques is equally broad, subsuming methods from both Shotokan and Shito-Ryu. Konishi considered Choki Motobu a martial arts genius and trained with him often. There is a strong focus on practicality and an approach that often combines entering strikes with finishing takedowns. Konishi would train with Miyagi whenever possible. Konishi created a kata he named Tai Sabaki (“body movement”). A notable difference from most karate kata was that it was an unbroken sequence of actions. Morihei Ueshiba remarked, "The demonstration you did just now was satisfactory to me and that kata is worth mastering." Konishi would later develop two more forms based on the same principles, and he named these three kata Tai Sabaki Shodan, Tai Sabaki Nidan and Tai Sabaki Sandan.
William Dometrich, Robert Trias and John Pachivas
(Hanshi Pachivas began teaching karate to the general public in the early 1950’s and is the Father of Karate in Florida.
In 1963 Grand Master Robert Trias invited him to the Hombu Dojo in Phoenix, Arizona. Hanshi Pachivas is one of just a few to be personally chosen by Robert Trias to be a member of the Trias International Society.)
“I strongly hope that for the unselfish benefit of all Karate-kas, for the good of our country and for the universal good of humanity, we can find a way amicably to enhance the true karate-do spirit through truth, loyalty, strength, and cooperation. In keeping with this spirit, a much higher degree of emphasis should be placed in the mental and spiritual forces involved, rather than the excessive concern with achievement of physical superiority which is thundering throughout the western world at this time.” -Robert Trias
Robert Trias was responsible for the following accomplishments in developing karate in United States:
- 1955 - Wrote the first rules for karate competition.
- 1955 - Conducted the first karate tournament.
- 1958 - Wrote the first textbook.
- 1959 - Made the first instructional film.
- 1963 - Conducted the first world karate championships.
- 1968 - Conducted the first professional karate tournament
Trias authored : Karate is my Life, The Hand is my Sword, The Pinnacle of Karate, The Supreme Way,
and Render Yourself Empty.
Long Beach International Karate Championships in Long Beach, California that was first held in August 1964 by Kenpo Master Ed Parker. (back, Allen Steen, George Mattson, Ed Parker, Tsutomu Ohshima, Robert Trias, front, Pat Burleson, Bruce Lee, Anthony Mirakian, Jhoon Rhee.)
(Robert Yarnall / James McLain / James Kennedy / James Pachivas /
Phillip Koeppel / James Chapman /James Jones, circa 1968)
Mike Stone (center) Robert Trias (right) Chicago
In 1984, Master Phillip Koeppel (right) founded the United States Karate Do Kai.
In 1986, Mr. Keeney established the Professional Karate Commission (PKC)
Trias opened the first Karate Dojo, in the United States mainland, in Arizona.Trias (1946), furthermore, in 1976, founded the Martial Arts Hall of Fame.
Jim Thomas and Robert Trias
The U.S.A. Martial Arts Hall of Fame was originally designed in the mid 1970’s as a service to Karate practitioners with the U.S.K.A. under co-creators Grand Master Robert Trias and Jim Thomas. During this period, there were no other ‘Hall of Fame’ types anywhere except the well-known Black Belt Magazine's Black Belt Hall of Fame.
Jim Thomas 1979 PKA
Jim Thomas later trained with Sensei Don Madden in Ko Sutemi Seiei Kan. Sensei Thomas was a WKF, AAU, National and World Champion in Karate as was classmate Tokey Hill. Jim Thomas was once the youngest highest ranked Black belts in the United States appearing on "Good Morning America".
Robert Trias' style was known as Shorei-Goju ryu, Shorei-ryu and Shuri-ryu. Many US organizations claim to trace their roots to him and the USKA, including the United States Karate-Do Kai, Professional Karate Commission, United States Karate Alliance, International Shuri-Ryu Association, and Kondo No Shokai.
Master Chad Wissler First induction into the Hall of Fame
Sensei Chad Wissler and Sensei Jim Thomas at the Neighborhood Karate and Judo Club (2013)
Sensei Jim Thomas is responsible for both the "Alliance" and "International Budo Society"
Master Wissler and Woodrow Fairbanks
Fairbanks an Original student of William Dometrich in Kempo Karate and Vic Moore/Robert Trias in Shuri Karate
Woodrow Fairbanks is one of only six "Red Pine Tree" holders.
Victor Moore and Joe Lewis Victor Moore and Bruce Lee 1967
Victor Moore was one of the late Robert Trias' Chief instructors of the Shuri-ryū Karate system.
Moore was one of the first ten original members of the Trias International Society, a Red Pine Tree Holder, and also studied and trained with William J. Dometrich in the style of Chito-ryu.
Sensei Chad Wissler and Hanshi Vic Moore, Sensei Wissler's home in Indiana.
Osu comes from oshi shinobu, which means "to persevere while being pushed"
James Mitose Kosho Ryu Kempo/Kenpo Jujitsu (1950)
Top row from left to right: William chow, Paul Yamaguchi, Harry Pang, Woodrow McCandle
Thomas Young , Grand Master James M. Mitose, Paul Pung.
Now a day's there are teachers on every block...unfortunately 90% of teachers aren't qualified to teach
...but they still get a lot of students because they're convenient.
William J. Dometrich Chito Ryu Karate