Showing Tag: "sensei gichin funakoshi" (Show all posts)

The History of Empi

Posted by on Friday, March 14, 2014, In : Video 


The origins of the kata Empi (Flight of the Swallow) are unclear though there are three main theories on how it came into being;
  1. Empi was, according to some sources, originally brought to Okinawa from China in 1683 by an envoy named Wang Ji, an expert in Shaolin Fujian White Crane.
  2. Others suggest it was brought to the island with the arrival of a group of Chinese immigrants known as the Thirty-Six Families. Their appearance in the late 14th century changed the history of fighting on Okinaw...

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The History of Hangetsu

Posted by on Thursday, October 31, 2013, In : Video 

Takayuki Mikami perofming Hangetsu.


Hangetsu (Half Moon) is possibly the oldest kata in the whole art of karate. Formally known as Seishan, it came through the Naha-te school though its origins are unknown. One theory is that the kata was formed from a Chinese folk dance, which aimed to explain to the onlooker the importance of the tides.

The original name, Seishan, means Thirteen which may be in reference to the thirteen day intervals as the moon revolves around the earth. However a more like...
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The History of Ji'in

Posted by on Friday, July 19, 2013, In : Video 

Hirokazu Kanazawa performing Ji'in


Ji’in (Inverted mercy) is no longer accepted as a kata of the Japanese Karate Association (JKA) and along with Wankan, was not included in the ‘Best Karate’ series by Masatoshi Nakayama, which is widely seen as a definitive guide to Shotokan kata. Despite this, many associations still teach it and many instructors feel the kata has a lot to offer their students.

The origins of Ji’in are obscure though as it shares the same Yoi position as Jion and Jitt...
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The History of Sochin

Posted by on Sunday, March 24, 2013, In : Video 


Sochin (Tranquil Force) may have its origins in martial arts history in Dragon Style Kung Fu and then later come through the Naha-te school in Okinawa, where it was taught by Seisho Arakaki. According to legend, Higaonna Kanryo learned it from him then passed it down to Kenzo Mabuni, the founder of Shito-Ryu.

Mabuni is said to have spent some time instructing Gichin Funakoshi’s son, Yoshitaka in the art of kata and as a result of these instructions, the Shotokan syllabus gained not only S...
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Gichin Funakoshi - Shuto Uke

Posted by on Wednesday, January 30, 2013, In : Photography 


Gichin Funakoshi executing a shuto uke (knife hand block)

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The History of Meikyo

Posted by on Friday, December 7, 2012, In : Video 


Meikyo (Bright/Polished Mirror) was renamed by Gichin Funakoshi (above) from its original name, Rohai meaning ‘Vision of a Crane’ (though many styles still use the old name). The kata comes from the Tomari-te school where it was a set of three, Rohai Shodan, Nidan, and Sandan.

These kata were probably invented by Sensei Anko Itosu, with the techniques being derived from a much longer version of Rohai which was possibly invented by Kosaku Matsumora, suggested by the fact that it was known...
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Sensei Gichin Funakoshi Demonstrating Basics

Posted by on Thursday, December 6, 2012, In : Photography 


Sensei Gichin Funakoshi demonstrating some basic karate moves.

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The History of the Kanku Kata

Posted by on Thursday, September 20, 2012, In : Video 


Kanku (Looking into the sky) Sho (minor) and Dai (major) are advanced kata in the Shotokan syllabus and practiced by many styles including those of Japanese, Okinawa and Korean karate. Kanku Sho (Performed above by Takayuki Mikami) is the younger of the two Kanku kata and was probably developed from kanku Dai and handed down as a part of Master Anko Itosu’s teachings.

It contains moves that are typical of Itosu kata, such as double punches and moves that are designed to control and or ...
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Sensei Anko Itosu with Kenwa Mabuni & Gichin Funakoshi

Posted by on Saturday, August 25, 2012, In : Photography 


Sensei Anko Itosu (with the glasses), pictured with some of his students including
Kenwa Mabuni (standing) & Gichin Funakoshi (to Itosu's left).

Date: c.1880.

Update - Having recently read an article on dandjurdjevic.blogspot.com it has come to my attention that Kenwa Mabuni can not be in this picture as he was not born until 1889, 21 years after Gichin Funakoshi. It seems likely that the boy seated is in fact Funakoshi though there is some doubt as to weather or not it is Anko Itosu sat be...
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The History of Unsu

Posted by on Tuesday, August 14, 2012, In : Video 


 Unsu (Hands in the Clouds) is a high level kata and one of the oldest practiced within Shotokan karate. Its exact origins are unknown but it is believed to be of Chinese origins, and of the Dragon Style of Kung Fu. According to Masatoshi Nakayama, anyone who tries to master Unsu before first mastering the Heian kata, Kanku-Dai, Empi and Jion will look like “a scarecrow trying to dance".

Symbolism is a recurring theme in the history of the martial arts and it has been suggested that the mo...

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