Update Info2013.11.13 The 2013 Karate Day Commemorative Demonstrations News
2013.7.11 The first international seminar of traditional Okinawa Karate News
2012.6.4 Prefectural Summer Season High School Karate News
2012.5.1 Okinawa International University Karate 3 Artists To the World News
Welcome to Okinawa Karate
Okinawa is the birthplace of Karate.
Historical background has clearly demonstrated that Okinawa is the birthplace of Karate
Okinawa, a small island Located on the southern tip of Japan, is where Okinawan Karate naturally emerged. In the Ryukyu Kingdom, it was spread as necessary accomplishments amongst the nobles. At the time, many ingenius Karate masters, who came to be known as Fist Saints, turned out. Among them, Gicchin Funakoshi and Choki Motobu blazed paths and aimed for Osaka and Tokyo. From there Okinawan Karate's fame spread, and Okinawan Karate dojos had many students eager to learn, which helped art to take root. In contrast with mainland Japan's Kenjitsu and Judo, Okinawan Karate's path circulated abroad with Okinawan emigrants becoming a major route.
It is obvious that Okinawa is the birthplace of Karate. The Japan Karate Federation and other major organizations located in Tokyo make claims that Japan is the birthplace of Karate. Okinawa prefecture and the Okinawan people want to object to this. If you consider that Okinawa is just one prefecture of Japan, then naturally you can say that Japan is the birthplace of Karate if you are speaking to non-Japanese audiences. However in the times we live in, where regional cultures and economies are vital, our prefecture's culture has been centralized with vague phrases that are very annoying to the Okinawan people.
The fact that Okinawa is the birthplace of Karate has continually been verified by consideration of historical records. Presently in Okinawa, many schools have Karate programs as a part of the regular curriculum, and there are many top class dojos. The details of such can be examined on this site's "Okinawan Karate History" section. Precise records about the source and birthplace of Karate are scarce as it is an ancient era, therefore discoveries of researchers and experts must be relied upon.
There is also a strong theory of China being the birthplace of Karate, which can not be denied. However, upon looking further into this theory, you will find that in ancient times both China and Okinawa gave birth to different prototypes of Karate. In this era there were face to face encounters by way of ocean voyages where battles, alliances and alienation were the norms. "Culture is raised up, going through battle only the strong survice" is a famous belief. Both Chinese and Okinawan Karate can be researched in the "Okinawan Karate History" section.
Mr. Shingo Hayashi, leading disciple of Masters Toyotomi and Shigeru Kojo speaks about Kojo Ryu
Kojo Ryu, one of the Okinawan Traditional Karate styles, closed the doors of its Dojo that was located in Tsuboya in Naha City over 10 years ago. It is called a current and visionary style.
Kojo Ryu was founded in 1392 when Sai Chouko of the "Kume 36 families" came to Ryukyu from Fijian province in China. Shortly afterwards Kojo Ryu was successfully branched off under Master Sai and until the 7th Generation Toyotomi Kojo and 8th Generation Shigeru Kojo who were respected warriors that passed on it's ancient and honorable origins.
The 8th Generation's Kojo Shigeru while still in his young 30's suddenly passed away, forcing his Dojo to close. Therefore the style is romantically cherished in Okinawa.
This time Mr. Shingo Hayashi who studied under both Yoshitomi and Shigeru Kojo and has inherited Kojo Ryu with his followers discusses Kojo Ryu in those days.