Karate 1.0: Parameter of an Ancient Martial Art

One of the most comprehensive, and demystifying studies on the enigmatic parameters of primordial Karate, this work intrigues readers with rich detail and insights into this ancient combat traditions, the pride of Okinawa.

KARATE 1.0: Parameter of an Ancient Martial Art. Düsseldorf 2013, by Andreas Quast.

cover (4)

Karate 1.0 front cover

  • Pages: xxvii, 502 pp.
  • Language: English.
  • Hardcover binding in green linen material with gold foil stamping, size 8.25″ x 10.75″ (20.95cm x 27.31cm).
  • Full-color dust jacket in matte finish.
  • Inside: black and white printing on cream archival paper (60# weight). White exterior paper (80# weight).
  • Forewords by Patrick McCarthy, Miguel Da Luz, Cezar Borkowski, Jesse Enkamp, Dr. Julian Braun, Soke Leif Hermansson, and Dr. phil. Heiko Bittmann.
  • All copies ship from the United States.
  • Price: $75.00.

Only the highest quality both in content and production: get it now from Lulu.com!

Read the review by the experts:

Okinawa was formerly known as the Ryūkyū Kingdom. This island kingdom was situated between China and Japan, the two giants in the ancient Asian world order. Involved for centuries in maritime trade, tribute, diplomacy and war, it became variously known as the peaceful kingdom, the islands of longevity, and the land of propriety. Over the course of five centuries, within its encapsulated maritime sphere, unique forms of martial traditions emerged. Today these are known as Karate and Kobudō, the pride of the Okinawans, and world martial arts enjoyed by millions of people around the globe.

Karate 1.0 was also covered in the Okinawa Karate News 沖縄空手通信, No. 91, 2014/01 issue.

The university libraries of Ludwig-Maximilians-University in Munich as well as of the world’s largest sports university – the German Sport University Cologne – added copies of Karate 1.0 to their inventory.

Yet, factual details about the history of these martial traditions largely remained shrouded in mystery to this day. As the result of the author’s exclusive and trailblazing research, which started two decades ago with a white belt at a friend’s dōjō, KARATE 1.0 now bears witness to the myriad headwaters of modern day Karate and Kobudō.

This masterpiece represents the results of nearly twenty years the author has invested in demystifying the convoluted genealogy of Karate. By conducting interviews around the globe and sifting through mountains of primary and secondary research, he puts the fighting arts and related-persons into a new historical perspective.

Karate 1.0 sold worldwide to Okinawa, Japan, the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Tasmania, Ireland, the UK, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Austria, France, the Netherlands, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Switzerland, and Spain.

The central theme of this work is the search for causal triggers of a holistic system of unarmed and armed martial traditions. By analysing the origin and transformation of the military and security organization of the Ryūkyū Kingdom, the author identified the superordinate security related royal government organizations and functions responsible. In addition he detected hundreds of martial artists active during Okinawa’s old kingdom era who otherwise would have remained unnoticed in Karate research and oral tradition.

In this way describing the enigmatic parameters of the Ryūkyū Kingdom’s ancient fighting arts, or KARATE 1.0, a common historical basis of the countless fragmentary traditions of modern Karate and Kobudō was discovered.

KARATE 1.0: Parameter of an Ancient Martial Art” should be embraced by the international Budō community and enjoy the recognition and success it so richly deserves.

Cover Art:

The sword hilt on the front cover is a scetch of the Chōganemaru sword. It once belonged to the mysterious King of Nakijin, Han’anchi. He was defeated by Shō Hashi, who took the sword. Afterwards it had been handed down within the royal Shō family of Ryūkyu for six centuries. On the cover it is meant as a symbol of royal authority rather than a weapon.

Did you know: Karate 1.0 for the first time includes ALL accepted written historical sources on Karate and Kobudō related martial arts of the kingdom.

It is also emblematic for the foreign influences. And it stands for the “Ryukyu Nutshell” in which the martial arts emerged, developed, and countinuously were updated. The “Ryukyu Nutshell” is the idea that the royal government of Ryūkyu basically remained in a constant form since the era of Shō Shin, although adjustments were taken over the centuries.

Karate 1.0 back cover

Karate 1.0 back cover

On the back cover is an artistic drawing of the character , i.e. the moral principle of justice, duty, and truth as the very basis of a martial “path”. Added to it is the caption “Go! Go! Go! Go!”. This is an allusion to the fact that the path should be proactively walked. BTW, is not the aim, but kokoro is. 

Finally, on the cover flips are found the characters Bun and Bu, that is scholarship and the art of war, which are considered to have existed in unitas. The reason for this is that in feudal times civil and military questions were deeply associated. This can be seen in the Sappōshi missions from China to Ryūkyū. It can also be seen in the era of Satsuma control. And it was also manifest in the government organization of the Ryūkyū Kingdom.

Expert ratings:

“KARATE 1.0 will compel you to rethink what is currently known about the historical and cultural background for the art that brings us all together … KARATE 1.0 is destined to become a future classic and a MUST for the bookshelves of every serious Karate-ka. I am SO EXCITED about this project and hope you will be, too.” – Patrick McCarthy, Hanshi 9th Dan, Australia

“This masterpiece represent the results of the author’s nearly twenty years of studies on the history of karate and is a fantastic source of information with its encyclopedic-like details about not only karate, but Ryukyuan history and culture.” – Miguel Da Luz, Okinawa Traditional Karate Liaison Bureau

“Andreas Quast has penned what I humbly believe will become the definitive book on Ryukyuan history and its parallel effect on the fighting traditions of the Nantou Islands.” – Cezar Borkowski, Hanshi 9th Dan, Canada

“When it comes to exploring the ancient martial arts of the Ryukyus, few people have the zealousness and grit of Andreas Quast.” – Jesse Enkamp, Karatepreneur, Sweden

“Andreas Quast’s contribution on the history of martial arts on the Ryukyu Islands is even more delightful.” – Dr. Julian Braun, Germany

“I have always been impressed with Mr Quast’s vast knowledge, acquired in many years of research, about the history of Karate and Kobudo.” – Soke Leif Hermansson, 10th Dan Hanshi, Sweden

“The book not only sheds more light on the history of the art, but also serves as a must-read for any martial arts enthusiast who wishes to acquire a deeper understanding of the origins, and the development, of Karatedo.” – Dr. phil. Heiko Bittmann, Kanazawa, Japan

“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” ― Søren Kierkegaard 

Karate 1.0 cover flip 1

Karate 1.0 cover flip 2


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The Okinawa Karate Kenkyū Kurabu (Okinawa Karate Research Club)


In 1918/04 a meeting place was established at the house of Mabuni Kenwa in Shuri. Here the Karate Kenkyūkai (Karate Research Society, short KRS) was created with shuri-te proponents as its members: Mabuni Kenwa, Hanashiro Chōmo, Chibana Chōshin, Tokuda Anbun, Ōshiro Chōjo, Gusukuma Shinpan, Tokumura Seitō, Ishigawa Hōkō, and others.

This association is well contrasted by the Karate Kenkyū Kurabu (Karate Research Club, short KRC), established in 1923 or 1924 in Asahigaoka in Naha Wakasa as an open air practice place. Members were of naha-te: Miyagi Chōjun, Kyoda Jūhatsu, Shinzato Jin’an, Madanbashi Keiyō, Shiroma Kōki, and others.

The Okinawa Karate Kenkyū Kurabu

According to the testimony of Miyagi Chōjun’s disciple Nakaima Genkai (1908-1984), after the death of Miyagi’s teacher, Higashionna Kanryō (1853-1915), Miyagi said

“The current study of Karate is as we don’t have a light in the dark; it is like going blindly.”

In order to get the ball rolling again, Miyagi together with Nakaima visited various seniors from the karate circles to ask for instruction. It is said that Miyagi was keenly aware of the need for a collaborative research institute under participation of various masters of karate.

By merging the KRS and the KRC, in March 1925 the Okinawa Karate Kenkyū Kurabu (Okinawa Karate Research Club, short OKRC) came into being. It was established as an open-air practice era in the south of Naha Wakasa, obviously for the purpose of collaborative research of karate. Miyagi Chōjun (1888-1953) was the central figure of its establishment. He and Mabuni Kenwa (1889-1952) were appointed the responsible instructors and Motobu Chōyū (1857-1928) acted as its chairman. The OKRC became the first ever collaborative and systematic Karate research institute in Okinawa.

In 1925, Miyagi Chōjun borrowed funds from financiers, with his friend Go Kenki of White Crane boxing (hakutsuru kenpō)  acting as a guarantor. In the following year (1926) a dōjō was completed in the rear of Mr. Kishimoto’s house in Wakasa. The dōjō area was about 50 square meters, and besides there was a garden of about 165 square meters, which was employed as well as an earthen floor dōjō. It was also equipped with various auxiliary practice tools, such as hanging makiwara (sagi-makiwara), strength-stone (chin-chīshi), stone padlocks (ishisashi) etc.


Auxiliary exercise (hojo undō) equipment of Karate-jutsu in the rear of Mabuni Kenwa’s house, 1925.

On the 1st and 15th day of the old lunar calendar, all instructors gathered in front of the alcove worshipping a hanging scroll depicting a “martial deity” (bujin) painted by master artist Yamada Shinzan. Afterwards – and while drinking awamori and the like – everything was crowned by a karate discussion.

With many of the various Karate masters of Okinawa at the time participating, it was a revolutionary organization. As for the participants, there are some variations in the literature, but the following are to be noted (alphabetical order):

  • A certain Tomoyori (a police detective)
  • Go Kenki (1887-1940)
  • Gusukuma Shinpan (1890-1954)
  • Hanashiro Chōmo (1869-1945)
  • Kyan Chōtoku (1870-1945)
  • Kyoda Jūhatsu (1887-1968)
  • Mabuni Kenwa (1889-1952)
  • Miyagi Chōjun
  • Motobu Chōki (1870-1944)
  • Motobu Chōyū
  • Ōshiro Chōyo (1888-1939)
  • Tabaru Taizō
  • Teruya Kamesuke
  • Yabu Kentsū (1866-1937)

Besides, Uehara Seikichi served as a donzel responsible for the tea ceremony, and Nakaima Genkai participated as a student.

As to the name, there are some differences in the representation according to author. The following names were found in literature:

  • Okinawa Karate Kurabu
  • Okinawa Karatejutsu Kenkyū Kurabu
  • Okinawa Karate Kenkyū Kurabu
  • Okinawa Karate Kenkyū Kurabu (different writing than previous)
  • Okinawa Wakasa Kurabu
  • Okinawa no Tī Kenkyū Kurabu
  • Kurabu-gwā (common name)

Maybe there simply was no such thing as a formal official name.

Using auxiliary exercise (hojo undō) equipment of Karate-jutsu in the rear of Mabuni Kenwa’s house:  Madanbashi Keiyō (2nd from left), Shinzato Jin’an (4th from left), Chōjun Miyagi (5th from left)

Using auxiliary exercise (hojo undō) equipment of Karate-jutsu in the rear of Mabuni Kenwa’s house:
Madanbashi Keiyō (2nd from left), Shinzato Jin’an (4th from left), Chōjun Miyagi (5th from left)

From the beginning business was in deficit and the club gradually reached the end of its tether. With the death of Motobu Chōyū as the club’s chairman in the early Shōwa era, it was closed. The period of its closing is variously given in literature, spanning from 1927 to 1929.

With the inauguration of the Okinawa-ken Taiiku Kyōkai (Okinawa prefecture physical education association) on 1930/11/22, the idea of the OKRC was continued in the Karate branch of this new umbrella association. Active in it were Yabu Kentsū, Miyagi Chōjun, Ōshiro Chōjo and others.

Three years later in 1933/01/08, the Dai Nippon Butokukai became the organization authorized to control martial arts. And in 1936/12 the Okinawa-ken Karate-dō Shinkō Kyōkai (The Association for the Promotion of Karate-dō of Okinawa prefecture) was established for the same purpose.

The Okinawa Karate Kenkyū Kurabu: 2nd row from left: Higa Seikō (naha-te), Tabaru Taizō (unknown), Mabuni Kenwa (shuri-te), Miyagi Chōjun (naha-te), Kyoda Jūhatsu (naha-te), Shinzato Jin’an (naha-te), Madanbashi Keiyō (naha-te),  3rd row from left: Azama (later: Nanjō), Suki (naha-te), a certain person, Nakaima Genkai (naha-te), Yagi (unknown), Senaha (later Sakiyama), and Tatsutoku (naha-te). The others are unknown.

The Okinawa Karate Kenkyū Kurabu: 2nd row from left: Higa Seikō (naha-te), Tabaru Taizō (unknown), Mabuni Kenwa (shuri-te), Miyagi Chōjun (naha-te), Kyoda Jūhatsu (naha-te), Shinzato Jin’an (naha-te), Madanbashi Keiyō (naha-te),
3rd row from left: Azama (later: Nanjō), Suki (naha-te), a certain person, Nakaima Genkai (naha-te), Yagi (unknown), Senaha (later Sakiyama), and Tatsutoku (naha-te). The others are unknown.


Hawai’i News, 1932; May 7, 1934.

Higaonna 2001.

Mabuni 2006.

Miyagi 1936.

Miyagi Takao 1976.

Nakaima 1978.

Okinawa Times, 31 January, 1926.

Okinawa Karate Kobudō Jiten 2008.

Uechi 1977.

Uehara 1992.

Yagi 2000.

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Okinawa’s earliest forms of community organization: the Makyo

  • Note: The following short article was planned to be included in Karate 1.0, but was not. It is about the earliest form of community organization in Okinawa, established by consanguineous groups called Makyo. The time we are talking about here is the centuries towards the 12th century.

There is a Omoro or ancient Okinawan song-poetry called “Building a Village”. It relates to the process of founding a village in ancient northern Okinawa.

By the side of that grove, it looks auspicious for raising a village. By the side of that hill, it looks auspicious for raising a country. Strike with the five-bladed hoe, strike with the seven-bladed hoe, and cut down the cliffs.


Villages were usually located on hilltops or in the mountainside for economic and geographic reasons, such as the existence of an auspicious site for the village’s sacred ground or Utaki, fertility of soil, availability of fresh water, ample sun, sanitation and the like. It had to provide for protection from typhoons and floods as well as for easy defence. Downhill, away from the houses, a plain or valley with a stream or spring would be where the villagers had their rice paddy fields.

The earliest form of community organization were found by consanguineous groups called Makyo and existed by virtue of the relationship between these Makyo and the deity of an Utaki related to this group and the village.

The word Makyo マキョ meant the consanguineous group as well as the village it composed. The traditional view of the Makyo village communities as consanguineous groups was established and maintained by Iha Fuyū, Nakahara Zenchū, Imamura Kenpu, and Higa Shunchō, and Sakihara Mitsugu adpted this view, not without noting that a new theory, not wholly negating the traditional view, was defined by Nakamatsu Yashū as “a village community, not necessarily consanguineous, which shares a common Utaki or sacred grove.” Cf. Sakihara 1987.

02pristessesEvery Okinawan village, except the out-of-job upper-class Yadori settlements of the 18th-19th centuries, had such an Utaki at its physical and spiritual centre. They usually consisted of a dense thicket or grove and shrubbery, like the tall Chinese fan palm (Livistona chinensis) or the black boxtree as the most distinctive kinds, as well as the Ryūkyū laurel (Aucuba japonica) and others which were also considered appropriate. In its centre was situated a small clearing, where a large rock, a censer, and sometimes a three-stone hearth was found. The Utaki are considered to have originated as a site for the grave of the village founder. After many generations, the function of the Utaki underwent change until it finally came to be considered a sacred grove for the worship of gods. The village community originated from this Utaki, and the village organization was formulated with the belief in the Utaki deity at its centre, protecting the village and ensuring its welfare and prosperity, and with all social and ritual activities in the village revolving around it. In other words, this is the origin of the ancient Okinawan worship of ancestry which can still be found today.

The consanguineous Makyo community originated with the founding clan called Neya, inalienably assuming not only the highest status and honor, but also the role of ruler and leader. However, its political and religious prestige was not derived from their village founding only, but largely from their relationship with the deity of the Utaki. That is to say, the founding clan established the Utaki and thereby gained jurisdiction over its rituals and ceremonies.

Neya 根屋, literally root house. Also Nedokoro  根所, root place.

islandThe founding clan was represented by its head, the Nebito or founder, and his sister, the Negami or foundress. The former had control over political and administrative aspects of the Makyo community, and the latter was in charge of religious and ceremonial aspects. Here, the earliest form of the brother-sister dual sovereignty in Okinawa becomes visible, which continued in different forms of leaders and holy women all through the kingdom era. Their authority was not as strong as that of the later feudal lords (Anji) or the kings and the holy women spiritually supporting them, but they were the rulers of their village community as bilateral mediators in relation to the deity. For this reason, the founding clan was at the center of all social activities, that is, all economic, political, recreational, or familial aspects of communal life to greater or lesser degree. Religious and secular matters coincided completely, which provided the ultimate momentum for the inner cohesion of the village groups.

Nebito 根人, literally root man: the founder.

Negami 根神, literally root deity, the foundress and ancestress of the later holy women called Onarigami.

The Makyo community both physically and geographically developed with the founding clan at its center. Gradually the clan increased in number of households by adding branch households. At the same time, as families belonging to other clans also settled in and the village expanded, the original Makyo community lost its consanguineous character. From that state on the Makyo communities began to be labelled by the more recent term of Mura, or village proper.

Bunke 分家: branch households.

mura 村= village, derived from mure 群れ, meaning group, throng, or crowd.

Each of the two or more consanguineous Makyo groups now constituting the village, then, came to be called Monchū, signifying the continuation of the individual clans as a patrilineal descent group. These Monchū systematically expanded according to two basic rules.

門中, i.e. inside the gates, or possibly as 門人.

03utakiThe first rule related the location of the branch households relative to the founding clan. It specified that the founding clan was to be located closest to and in front of the Utaki. Branch households were located to the left or right in front of the founding clan. The more recent the branch household, the farther it stood from the Utaki. The second rule pertained to the name of the household. This rule required that all branch households denote, by means of a prefix or suffix to the household name, their relation with or location towards the founding clan. In this manner, theis names read like New House, Eastern House, Eastern Gate, Root-of-the-Small-Pine, In-Front-of-the-Parents, and so on.

Ya no na 屋の名, the name of the household

Niiya 新屋, Agariya 東屋, Agarijo, Iri-imui, Matsuni-gwa 松根小, Mae-ufuya 前親.

In this way, the founding clans maintained and secured their prestige and authority based on ancestor worship. This fundamental concept played an integral role not only in the original villages, but in fact also in the history of Ryukyuan society as well.

Uganju – The original dōjō of Okinawa

There were also other holy sites called Uganju which, located at the foot of a great tree or rock, roughly encircled the old villages. The Uganju were closely related to the Utaki and the Okinawan villages from earliest times through to the 20th century.

Uganju 御願所, generic term of places used for prayers for divine assistance and wellbeing, often connected to Utaki.

They were described by Chamberlain (1895, I):

“Large open grassy spaces, often appearing as glades in the forest form a characteristic adjunct to Ryukyuan villages which perplexed the early foreign visitors.”

The functions of these areas were plentyfold.

“Called ‘race-courses,’ these spaces also serve a variety of other purposes. Here rice is laid out to dry, and the village council meets – or met in old days – goods were bartered, justice was administered, rewards and punishments meted out, festivals celebrated.”

As of February 1854, Perry’s Fleet Surgeon Dr. D. S. Green in his report described an

„open and level grounds found in populous neighborhoods, which seem to be designed as arenas for athletic exercises and games. These are some hundred yards long, and some twenty or thirty wide, and, being perfect level, are well adapted to racing, whether on horse or foot, wrestling &c., and to ball-playing.“ (Cf. Hawks 1856)

mura_boIn more recent history the oral tradition of Bōjutsu masters of the early 20th century had been handed down: their training and that of other youngsters from the villages took place in front of the Uganju. Before the training they would fold their hands in prayers, and afterwards the students were taught (Cf, OKKJ 2008). This is the tradition of Mura-bō, which greatly helped to revive modern, more martial Bōjutsu (Cf. Taira 1964).

From the above we can see that conceptions such as Uganju in name and function had survived a thousand years in Okinawa.

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The term “Torite” in Itosu’s 10 precepts

As an answer to myself concerning the short article on Torite and Tuidi, I want to make clear that of course we find the term torite 取手: It is used in #6 of Itosu Ankō’s “10 Precepts of Karate”, written in October 1908.

If this means anything, and if so, what exactly, I’d like you to decide for yourself.

Here are two translations easily found (!) on google. They both sound very similar. You might argue they are the same.

  • #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 (torite). 
  • #6. Practice each of the techniques of karate repeatedly. Learn the explanations of every technique well, and decide when and in what manner to apply them when needed. Enter, counter, withdraw is the rule for torite.

First of all, as I don’t trust anyone :D I tried to re-interpret the original text again:

  • #6. Practice each of the skills of karate repeatedly. Attentively devote yourself to the meaning of each individual technique and make sure to apply them according to all possible circumstances. In addition, there are the methods of entering, receiving, releasing, and seizing. To these there are many oral instructions.

As you can see: I wrote some of the terms in italics. Here is an explanation that might help.

The “skills of karate” here refers to Kata, not to individual techniques. Other than commonly believed, Itosu here obviously advised to learn all of them. But there is a cautionary note: If these are practiced only half-heartedly or flabby, such practice is not effective. Therefore, in order to improve the efficiency of practice, one must immerse oneself in the “true art”, that is: train your ass off. To achieve this, one has to pay attention not only to the correct meaning of each of the techniques contained within each of the Kata, but also to each possible case of their application in order to be able to apply these techniques in any possible circumstance.

In addition, and as everybody knows, there are advanced skills within the kata that do not openly appear, such as special methods of attack (ire 入れ: entering), methods of defence (uke 受け: receiving), methods of releasing in case one is seized at the arm or the neck etc. (hazushi はずし), methods of locking joints (torite 取り手: seizing skills): But since these are “secret traditions”, many of them are only handed down orally to students. (kuden 口伝: oral instruction; orally handed down secret).

So here’s the meaning of #6 after the above consultation:

  • #6. Practice each of the kata of karate repeatedly. Attentively devote yourself to the meaning of each of the individual techniques contained within these kata and make sure to apply them according to all possible circumstances. In addition, there are the methods of attack, methods of defence, methods of releasing in case one is seized at the arm or the neck etc., and the methods of locking joints. But since these are “secret traditions“, many of them are only handed down orally to students.

So: It’s ok to use the Okinawan pronounciation of the term as Tuidi as a term describing a specific technical concept in reference to article #6 of Itosu Ankō.

It should be noted, though, that at the Teacher’s College in Shuri (the normal school), only standard Japanese was allowed. I would doubt that Itosu would have used Okinawan language in any correspondence, written or by word of mouth, with the Japanese Ministry of Education and the Ministry of War, to which he adressed this writing. Otherwise we would never heard of him.

Another point is: The first real dōjō established in Okinawa was a Jūdō dōjō, still in the late 19th century. It seems obvious that Japanese ideas of Bujutsu since at least the foundation of the Butokukai in 1895 would set the standards. In 1908, when Itosu wrote his 10 precepts, the Butokukai was organized in all regions of Okinawan, under the governor as its director.

In other words: the use of the term Torite by Itosu, in sense of Kansetsu-waza, by no means implies or can be taken as evidence that this term had been used in an indigenous Okinawan meaning anytime prior to this.

Yet, Okinawa/Ryukyu had police forces and security personell, why not simply use the term Torite/Tuidi in sense of a feudal policemen and the techniques they employed? We know the term is historic in Japan, so can we assume that it was also used in Okinawa? Yes, we can! But there’s still no proof other than Itosu’s misspelling. :O

In one of the the first newspaper articles noting “Karate” in 1898, using the old writing as Tōdī, nobody knew what this “art” was about anyway. Reporters on different occasions explained it as “maybe a Chinese style of Jūjutsu?”. Would that even be wrong? I don’t think so as they simply use the word Jūjutsu here as a reference for grappling and stuff. In this sense there is also American Jūjutsu, and French Jūjutsu, etc.  So why oh why has it to be something indigenous ancient Okinawan concept stemming from family clans handed down for 1000 years? Especially when there is not one single photograph of it! :P

In February 1905, an unknown journalist pointed out in the Ryūkyū Shinpō what he believed should be the main points of educational Karate. Among others he wrote:

We are in the process of getting the ball rolling in Jūjutsu, wherein Western people still have to start working. That Karate has its origin in the prefectural middle school is a great delight.

At that time a new framework was being devised, and it was 100% Japanese, except the names of Kata still had an exotic feel, which was probably very cool at the time: Okinawa had played the exotic kingdom for centuries already – under Satsuma’s quasi-rule, Japanese names and clothes were forbidden and they were ADMONISHED to exhibit “exotic customs”. Anyway, as shown in the reference to Jūjutsu in the above article, Karate’s new face was that of an Okinawan form of the conception of Jūjutsu/Jūdō, and – as the journalist wished – it would hopefully follow the great international success of Jūjutsu/Jūdō already at the time.

But most importantly: There is not one single historical source prior to 1908 that confirms the usage of Torite/Tuidi in Okinawa in relation to any sort of Karate or its predecessors.

From this reason, when using the term Tuidi, it should be defined what is meant by it, and this includes it’s historical etymology.

Itosu Anko's Ten Precepts.  From: Nakasone Genwa: Karate-dō Taikan  (Outline of Karate-dō), 1938.

Itosu Anko’s Ten Precepts.
From: Nakasone Genwa: Karate-dō Taikan (Outline of Karate-dō), 1938.

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Torite and Tuidi

Beware: Unless someone provides historical evidence, all these terms used today in Uchinaguchi, including tuidi and whatnot, are 20th century guessings and fabrications in an attempt to backdate the tradition. It is called “the invention of tradition”.

Heres the point:

torite 捕り手: 1 someone who catches criminals; a policeman who was specialized in arresting people. 2 Budō/-jutsu techniques for arresting people.

This is Japanese and it is historical. It is also called

torikata 捕り方: 1 archaic word for constable; a pursuer or (figuratively) a bloodhound; someone who catches criminals. 2 a method to catch criminals.

It either refers to the skill (torite 捕り手) or to the person (torikata 捕り方).

It derives from toru 捕る, i.e. to catch; grasp; seize.

This can also be written toru 取る, which has the same meaning.

So, theoretically, writing it torite 捕り手 or torite 取り手 would make no difference.

But…. Simply writing it the unusual and unhistoric way as torite 取り手 doesn’t make it something indigenous or even historical Okinawan.

Get over it!

Beni Hasan, 21st century BCE. The Japanese might call it Torite, the Okinawans might call it Tuidi. Does that make it Japanese or Okinawan? Hell no!

Beni Hasan, 21st century BCE. The Japanese might call it Torite, the Okinawans might call it Tuidi. Does that make it Japanese or Okinawan? Hell no!

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Über die Herkunft der „Hashiri-kakari“ im Mugai-ryū 無外流における「走り懸り」の起源について


Im Mugai-ryū gibt es eine Kategorie von Techniken, die im Gehen ausgeführt werden. Diese werden Hashiri-kakari genannt, d.h. soviel wie „Laufangriffe“. Laut Hamamoto Sensei wurden diese von der Polizei entwickelt. Grund genug für mich die Sache in genauen Augenschein zu nehmen. Dafür müssen wir uns in die Zeit nach Gründung der Meiji-Regierung im Jahre 1868 begeben.

Zu jener Zeit wurde das feudale Stadtmagistratsbüro von Nord-Edo zur neuen „Strafrechtsbehörde“ umgestaltet, dem höchsten Rechtsprechungsorgan der Meiji-Regierung. Im folgenden Jahr wurde diese Strafrechtsbehörde als „Zentrale Justizbehörde“ neu organisiert, und schließlich 1871 als modernes Justizministerium vollendet. In dieser Form existierte es bis 1948 weiter.

Seit der Gründung im Jahre 1868 wurden die für die Beaufsichtigung des Stadtgebietes eingesetzten Polizeibeamten in dieser Behörde organisiert. Bei den rekrutierten Personen handelte es hauptsächlich um Mitglieder der ehemaligen Samurai-Klasse. Im Februar 1870 wurde damit begonnen, diese im Kenjutsu und Jūjutsu, respektive Toritejutsu, zu unterrichten.

Der Zen-artige Ausdruck "bankyō mu-u" - i.e. "Eintausend Spiegel, und darin kein Hase." Gefunden wurde dieser in einem Technikregister des Jikyō-ryū, DEM wichtigsten Urspung des Mugai-ryū. (Quelle : Nakagawa Shin'ichi: Tsuji Mugai-den. Mugai-ryû Iai. 1938)

Der Zen-artige Ausdruck “bankyō mu-u” – i.e. “Eintausend Spiegel, und darin kein Hase.” Gefunden wurde dieser in einem Technikregister des Jikyō-ryū, DEM wichtigsten Urspung des Mugai-ryū. (Quelle : Nakagawa Shin’ichi: Tsuji Mugai-den. Mugai-ryû Iai. 1938)

Zuständig für die Kenjutsu-Ausbildung waren anfänglich Shimoe Hidetarō (1848-1904) vom Hokushin Ittō-ryū und Momonoi Shinzō (1825-1885) vom Kyōshin Meichi-ryū. 1871 wurden diese entlassen und die Ausbildung im Kenjutsu zentral innerhalb der Behörde weitergeführt. Das von den Provinzregierungen jener Zeit eingesetzte Kenjutsu folgte im Großen und Ganzen ebenfalls dieser Zentralisierung. Die Fechtmeister der ausgehenden Tokugawa-Zeit konnten ihren Lebensunterhalt somit nicht mehr über das Schwerttraining bewerkstelligen und begannen, das Fechten im privaten Bereich weiterzuführen.

Im Januar 1874 wurde in Tōkyō das Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidium (keishichō 警視廳) gegründet, wobei die Polizisten auch mit Schwertern bewaffnet wurden. Während der Satsuma Rebellion von 1877 dann nahmen vom Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidium ausgewählte sogenannte Battō-Corps teil, die sich besonders im Nahkampf mit dem Schwert auszeichneten. Der bewaffnete Widerstand altgläubiger Samurai endete zwar mit der Satsuma Rebellion, jedoch führten die Erfolge der polizeilichen Battō-Corps zu einer Re-evaluierung des Kenjutsu. 1879 wurde schließlich beschlossen die Polizeibeamten gezielt im Kenjutsu auszubilden.

Der Präsident des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums jener Zeit war Mishima Machitsune (1835-88), Sohn eines Satsuma Gefolgsmanns und Schwertschüler des Satsuma Kommandanten Ijichi Masaharu. Mishima bemüht sich um den Aufbau polizeilicher Methoden und ernannte zuständige Ausbilder zur Betreuung der Kampfkünste im Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidium für die Polizeiausbildung im Kenjutsu, Jūjutsu, und Toritejutsu.

Im Bereich des Kenjutsu waren die folgenden Personen die ersten Fechtlehrer:

  • Kajikawa Yoshimasa, vom Ono-ha Ittō-ryū,
  • Ueda Umanosuke (1831-1890), vom Kyōshin Meichi-ryū, und
  • Henmi Sōsuke (1843-1894), vom Tatsumi-ryū.

Diese drei zählten noch lange zu den Spitzenkräften. Es folgten weitere Fechtmeister der ausgehenden Tokugawa-Zeit, wie:

  • Shimoe Hidetarō (1848-1904), vom Hokushin Ittō-ryū,
  • Kakimoto Seikichi (1822-?), vom Shinshinkage-ryū,
  • Tokunō Sekishirō (1842-1908), vom Shinshinkage-ryū,
  • Mihashi Kan’ichiro (1841-1909), vom Nitō-ryū,
  • Sakahe Daisaku (1836-1908), vom Kyōshin Meichi-ryū,
  • Shingai Tadaatsu (1842-1920), vom Kubota-ha Tamiya-ryū, und
  • Kanematsu Naokado, vom Tatsumi-ryū.

Das Schwertfechten des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums erlebte so quasi sein goldenes Zeitalter.

Zum Andenken an gefallene Polizisten der Satsuma Rebellion wurde 1877 der Yayoi Schrein im Kitanomaru Park in Tōkyō Chiyoda erbaut, welcher auch allgemein dem Gedenken von im Dienst gefallenen Polizisten und Tōkyōter Feuerwehrmännern dient. Ab 1884 hielt das Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidium hier jedes Jahr am 13. und 14. November Gedenkfeiern für gefallene Polizeibeamte mit Bujutsu-Vorführungen ab (heute finden diese im Nippon Budōkan statt). 1885 kam es erstmals zu einem großen Fechtwettkampf mit 181 Paarungen unter Teilnahme von Fechtern aus dem ganzen Lande.

1886 dann wurde eine große Vorführung der Kampfkünste des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums veranstaltet, wobei Kata der verschiedene Stile vorgeführt wurden. Wegen der großen Anzahl von Kata hatte man entschieden, das Wesentliche daraus zu kompilieren und festzulegen. Die technische Kommission zur Auswahl der verschiedenen Fechtmethoden wurde aus der Gruppe der Ausbilder des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums bestellt, darunter Ueda Umanosuke, Kajikawa Yoshimasa, Henmi Sōsuke, Tokunō Sekishirō, und Shingai Tadaatsu. Neben Fechtmethoden wurden auch Methoden des Jūjutsu und des Hayanawa kompiliert. Dies war der Ursprung des Keishichō-ryū 警視庁流, dem Stil des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums. Da diesem die Trainingsleitung der Polizei auf nationaler Ebene unterlag stand das Keishichō-ryū auf einen Schlag im Mittelpunkt. In gewissem Sinne wurde das Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidium so zum Zentrum der Kenjutsu-Welt jener Zeit. Es wurde hier der Versuch unternommen, die Fechtmethoden wie auch andere polizeirelevante Methoden aus der alten Struktur feudaler Stilfraktionen auf eine gemeinsame nationale Ebene zu hieven.

Die Ausbilder im Jahre 1888

Das Foto unten stammt aus der Oktober 1921 Ausgabe des Magazins „Jikei“ (wörtlich „Selbstschutz“). Es zeigt alle Ausbilder der Kampfkünste des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums im Jahre 1888.

Die zuständigen Ausbilder zur Betreuung der Kampfkünste im Metropolitan Police Department für die Polizeiausbildung im Kenjutsu, Jūjutsu, und Toritejutsu

Die zuständigen Ausbilder zur Betreuung der Kampfkünste im Metropolitan Police Department für die Polizeiausbildung im Kenjutsu, Jūjutsu, und Toritejutsu

    • Vordere Reihe von rechts: Asami Katsumitsu, Kanatani Genryō, Hisatomi Tetsutarō, Shingai Tadaatsu (1842-1920), Sonobe Hisagorō, Naka Danzō, Tani Torao, Tobari Takisaburō (1872-1942), Yamashita Yoshitsugu (1865-1935, Kōdōkan Jūdō), Uehara Shōgo (Ryōi Shintō-ryū)。
    • Zweite Reihe von rechts: Natō Takaharu (1862-1929, Hokushin Itō-ryū), Mihashi Kann’ichirō (1841-1909, Musahi-ryū), Miyabe Tomomichi, Iwasaki Hōken, Ōshima Hikozaburō, Sakabe Daisaku, Itami Shichizaemon, Nakamura Hansuke (Ryōi Shintō-ryū), Tatsuko Nobushige , Kōno Ichini, Jogawa Kijūrō, Chiba Yukitane, Imamura Shimifu.
    • Dritte Reihe von rechts: Aida Sadajirō, Nagasawa Tadaya, Yabe Tsunenori, Mutō Hideshige, Sasaki Masayoshi , Yamamoto Kinsaku, Imai Yukitarō, Nomura Kinosuke, Kanematsu Naokado, Matsui Momotarō, Kajikawa Yoshimasa (Ono-ha Ittō-ryū).
    • Hintere Reihe von rechts: Negishi Shingorō, Mori Kōzō, Nakamura Senjirō, Shibata Emori, Kōchi Entarō, Tokunō Sekishirō (1842-1908, Shinshinkage-ryū), Henmi Sōsuke (1843-94, Tatsumi-ryū, später auch Hokushin Ittō-ryū and Kyōshin Meichi-ryū), Ōta Sugenao, Samura Masaaki, Natsumi Matanoshin, Sakita Mikan.

Die festgelegten Kata

Für den Gebrauch durch die Kaiserliche Polizei wurden vier Kategorien festgelegt, nämlich Kidachi, Jūjutsu, Hayanawa, and Tachi-iai. Von Letzterem sollen im Folgenden die dazugehörige Kata und Herkunftsstile gegeben werden.


Tachi-iai bezeichnet eine Kompilation von fünf Fechtstücken, bei denen im Gehen das Schwert mit einer Technik gezogen und dann weitere Folgetechniken ausgeführt werden. Dies wurde auch Battōjutsu genannt. Diese fünf Fechtstücke wurden wie oben erwähnt beschrieben erstmals 1886 öffentlich aufgeführt. Bei der Kompilation wurden aus fünf verschiedenen Fechtschulen jeweils ein Fechtstück ausgewählt:

Nr. Kata Fechtschule Anmerkung
1 Mae-goshi Asayama-ryū nach Shōmen
2 Musō-gaeshi Shindō Munen-ryū von Shōmen nach hinten
3 Mawari-gakari Tamiya-ryū nach Shōmen, links
4 Migi no Teki Kyōshin Meichi-ryū nach Shōmen, rechts
5 Shihō Tatsumi-ryū nach Shōmen, hinten, links, rechts

Diese fünf Tachi-iai wurden im Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidium nicht überliefert, sondern erwiesen sich wahrscheinlich nicht allzulange nach 1886 bereist relativ obsolet für den Polizeidienst. Allerdings wurde 1969 das Keichichō Iai Dōkōkai gegründet, ein Club um den damaligen Direktor der Kriminalabteilung des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums, Tsuchida Kuniyasu (1922-1999). Seit 2012 findet einmal wöchentlich vormittags im Honbu Dōjō des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums ein Training statt. Dieses wurde von Angestellten und Ehemaligen des Hauptstadt-Polizeipräsidiums organisiert, sowie von außerhalb dieser Institution stehenden Personen.

Diese fünf Tachi-iai des Keishichō-ryū sind in Namen, Reihenfolge und Inhalt identisch mit den fünf Fechtstücken des Mugai-ryū. Sie sind die fünf Kata der Kategorie „Hashiri-kakari“, d.h. Laufangriffe. Und dies ist deren Herkunft.

Hamamoto Hisao Sensei

Hamamoto Hisao Sensei, Okinawa Kenritsu Budokan 2011

Empfohlene Zitierweise: Quast, Andreas: Hachiman-ryū Tsūshin 八幡流通信. Ausgabe 1. Über die Herkunft der Hashiri-kakari im Mugai-ryū 無外流における「走り懸り」の起源について。Düsseldorf, Februar 2014. Online: http://ryukyu-bugei.com/?p=2137

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The Birth of competition karate and national organizations

The sportification (gamification) of Karate had been attempted since prior to WWII, but organizational sports had not been successfully implemented. In 1945, while the Budō ban was still valid for other Budō, the Kanbukan was established for the practice of Karate by top students of Tōyama Kanken (1888-1966) in Tōkyō. From this in 1951 the Renbukan ermerged, established inside the Onko Gakkai (Academy for the Study of Old Things) in Tokyo Shibuya Hikawa. It was led under Tōyama Kanken, who followed a „no-style“ principle, i.e. he acticely did not support “style-thinking” in Karate.

At the Renbukan, Kinjo Hiroshi (1919-2013), who was also the leader in post-war Karate journalism, spearheaded the development of Karate with protective equipment as an alternative to kendō armor.This was begun in 1953 and finished in 1954. On December 3rd the same year the Renbukan carried out the first nationwide Karate tournament of Japan, the 1st Nationwide Karate Championship during which protective equipment rules were used.

In 1959 the Renbukan had achieved the support of the Taiwanese businessman Sai Chōkō . Sai was born in 1914 the oldest son of a mayor of a ward in Taiwan, which was still under Japanese control since 1895. Already in his youth he had studied Crane Boxing (tsuru kenpō) and Ancestors Boxing (taisoken), both of which have been mentioned as sources for early Okinawan Karate. In addition, he was a 9th Dan in Karate and 8th Dan in Jūdō. In addition, among others he also worked as the editor of the Kōdōkan Jūdō magazine and in 1958 published a book on Karate.

Sai Choko: Tsuru Kenpo 1958

Sai Choko: Tsuru Kenpo 1958

„Still, in February 1941 the Japan Times published a photo of some men doing what looked like karate above this caption: ‘A new form of defense has been worked out by Mr. Choko Sai, of Formosa [Taiwan], combining points of judo and a kind of boxing perfected in the Loochoo [Ryukyu] Islands.‘“

Source: Noble, Graham: Masters of the Shorin-ryu: Chotoku Kyan. In: Journal of Combative Sport, Aug 2000. 

Sai Chōkō’s support helped fascilitating the development of the old Japan Karate Federation in 1959, with the headquarter being Tōyama Kanken’s dōjō named Shūdōkan. With Tōyama Kanken as grandmaster of the headquarter dōjō, Sai Chōkō as president, Konishi Yasuhiro (1893-1983, Shindō Jinen-ryū) and Kinjō Hiroshi (Kanbukan) as vice presidents as well as Ōtsuka Hironori (1892-1982, Wadō-ryū) , Yamada Tatsuo (1905-1967, Nihon Kenpō Karate-dō) and Gima Shinkin (1896-1989, Shōtōkan-ryū) as advisers, a great number of Karate leaders in those days assumed office.

Yamada Tatsuo (left) with Motobu Chōki in 1926

Yamada Tatsuo (left) with Motobu Chōki in 1926

In this year, 1959, they hosted the All Japan JKF Championship , in which Shōrinji-ryū Karate-dō Renshinkan, the Nihon Chitōkai and others participated. However, the protective equipment used at the time did not sufficiently ensure safety and nessecitated high risk allowances.

Currently under the patronage of the JKF Renbukai this tournament is still held under the name of „National Championships of Karate with protective equipment“. It is thus Karate’s oldest nationwide convention.

Front row far left: Yamada Tatsuo at the Butokusai in 1938.

Front row far left: Yamada Tatsuo at the Butokusai in 1938.

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Uechi Kanei: Seisetsu Okinawa Karate-do: Sono Rekishi to Giho, 1977

Book presentation:

Uechi Kanei: Seisetsu Okinawa Karate-dō: Sono Rekishi to Gihō. Uechi-ryū Karate-dō Kyōkai, Ginowan 1977. Appendix: 1 leaflet: Okinawa Karate-dō Kobudō no Soshiki Keitōzu. Editor-in-chef: Uechi Kanei. Chief editor: Takamiyagi Shigeru. Compilers and authors: Uechi Kanei, Takamiyagi Shigeru, Nakamatsu Ken, Tōbaru Keichō, Yonamine Kōsuke.

AKA The Uechi-ryu Bible


The contents are as follows:

Photos, introductions, forewords

Contents pages

First Collection: The Kata of Karate (by Nakamatsu Ken)

Chapter I: The Kata Sanchin

  • Overview on Sanchin
  • Sanchin and it’s method of body training
  • The breathing method
  • The order of sequences of Sanchin
  • On Wa-uke und Morote-boshiken-tsuki
  • Discussion of Sanchin
  • Is „Kata“ „Kata型“ or „形“?

Chapter II: The Kata Kanshiwa

  • Understanding Kanshiwa
  • The order of sequences of Kanshiwa
  • Bunkai analysis of Kanshiwa

Chapter III: The Kata Sēsan

  • Understanding Sēsan
  • The order of sequences of Sēsan
  • Bunkai analysis of Sēsan

uechi-ryuChapter IV: The Kata Sansēryū

  • Understanding Sansēryū
  • The order of sequences of Sansēryū

Chapter V: Yakusoku-kumite Nr. 1

  • Understanding Yakusoku-kumite Nr. 1
  • The order of sequences of Yakusoku-kumite Nr. 1

Second Collection: Theory and practice methods of basic technology of the basic techniques (by Tōbaru Keichō)

Chapter I: Tsuki-waza and Uchi-waza

  •  Seiken-zuki
  •  Shōken-zuki
  •  Hiraken-zuki
  •  Uraken-zuki
  •  Tettsui-uchi
  •  Boshiken-zuki
  •  Hiji-zuki (Hiji-ate)
  •  Nukite
  •  Shutō-uchi
  •  Kakushi-ken (tsuruhashi)
  •  Koken (kuruyubi)
  •  Shukōken-uchi (tsuru-gashira)
  •  Hajiki

Chapter II: Keri-waza

  •  Keri-waza with the toes (Sokusen)
  •  Shōmen-geri
  •  Sokutō-geri
  •  Kansetsu-geri
  •  Ushiro-geri
  •  Kaiten-ushiro-geri
  •  Kesa-geri
  •  Nidan-geri
  •  Hiza-geri (Hiza-ate)

Chapter III: Uke-waza

  •  Hirate-mawashi-uke
  •  Haitō-uke
  •  Shōtei-nagashi-uke
  •  Jōdan-hajiki-uke
  •  Chūdan-hajiki-uke
  •  Gedan-harai-uke
  •  Gedan-uchi-uke
  •  Hirate-sukui-age-uke
  •  Shōken–sukui-age-uke
  •  Harai-sukui-uke
  •  Hiza-uke

Third Collection: The history of Karate (by Takamiyagi Shigeru)


Chapter I: The birth of Kensei (Saint of boxing)

  • Section I: Kensei Uechi Kanbun and the Uechi family
  • Section II: Leading figures and the genealogy of the Uechi family

Chapter II: Crossing over to the Qing dynasty

  • Section I: Records on the study of martial arts
  • Section II: The universal dream of a man called a strong one
  • Section III: Bypassing the military service
  • Section IV: The situation in China before and after Uechi Kanbun crossed over to Qing-China

Chapter III: Ryūkyū and the Chinese coastal province of Fújiàn

  • Section I: Fuzhou, capital of China’s coastal province of Fújiàn
    • The influence of the culture of Fújiàn
    • The Ryūkyūkan (Róuyuǎnyì)
    • The Chinese coastal province of Fújiàn
    •  The City of Fuzhou
    •  Notes

Chapter IV: Short biography of Chinese Quánfǎ

  • Section I: China prior to Dámó dàshī (Bodhidharma)
    • Necessity, the mother of all technique
    • Ordering physical strentgh to take the back seat
    • The shape of martial arts and its development
    • Treatise on the originators of Chinese Quánfǎ
    • The era of systematization of Chinese Quánfǎ
    • Historical periodization in relation to Dámó (Bodhidharma)
    • Overview of the History of China prior to Dámó (Bodhidharma)
  • Section II: In search of the primordial material of Chinesese Quánfǎ
    • Screening of numerous ancient books – the Quánshù prior to Dámó (Bodhidharma) (Shuo Yuan, Wenzi, Wu Zi, Huainanzi, Shiji, Yan Tie Lun, Guliang Zhuan, Xin Xu, Han Shu, Lie Nu Zhuan, Shuo Wen Jie Zi, Xunzi, Guanzi, Chun Qiu Fan Lu, Hou Han Shu, Wei Liao Zi, Guo Yu, Hou Han Shu, Lost Book of Zhou, Chu Ci)
    • The meaning of the character Ken/Quán (lit. fist)
    • Shī jīng –The Book of Songs
    • The Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC)
    • The Lǐ jì – The Classic of Rites
    • The Warring States Period
    • The Chǔ cí – The Songs of the State of Chǔ – and becoming of the State of Chǔ
    • Chǔ cí – The Songs of the State of Chǔ
    • Guǎn zǐ – classic book containing the writings of  Guǎn Zhòng, a politician of the State of Qí
    • Chūn qiū Zuǒ-shì zhuàn – Mr. Zuǒ’s Spring and Autumn Annals
    • The Qin Dynasty (221-207 BC)
    • The Early Han Dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD)
    • The Late Han Dynasty
    • Hàn shū –The History of the Western (Early) Han
    • The Shǒu bó liù piān – 6 Articles on the tradition of the “hand”
    • Sān guó shí dài –The Era of the Three Kingdoms
    • Nán běi cháo shí dài –The Era of Northern and Southern Dynasties (420 – 589)
  • uechi-ryuSection III: The old Dǎoyǐn [Daoist exercises involving breathing, stretching and self-massage] of the Chinese continent, and Quánfǎ
    • Dǎoyǐn [Daoist exercises involving breathing, stretching and self-massage]
    • The training method of Ruǎnyìng (flexible and firm)
    • Wǔqín-zhīxì and Shàolín-wǔquán (The Play of the Five Animals and the Five Boxing Styles of Shàolín)
    • Bāduàn-jǐn Dǎoyǐn-fǎ – The Dǎoyǐn Method of the Eight Treasures
    • Yìjīn-jīng and Xǐsuǐ-jīng (The Sūtra of Muscles/Tendons Transformation and the Sūtra of Purified Marrow)
    • Notes
  • Section IV: The Shàolín monastery Dámó dàshī (Bodhidharma)
    • The Sōngshān Shàolín monastery
    • Sēng bīng –warrior monks
    • The the chaos of war at the end of the Sui Dynasty (581-617), and the Shàolín monastery
    • The Shàolín-sì Zhi (Records of the Shàolín monastery)
    • The Fújiàn Shàolín monastery
    • Famous representatives of Quánfǎ during the dynasties of the Sòng (960-1279), the Yuán (1279-1368), the Míng (1368-1644), and the Qīng (1644-1911)
    • The two great martial arts writings of the Ming period: the Jìxiào Xīnshū and the Wǔbèizhì
  • Section V: The Shàolín martial arts during Míng- (1368-1644) and Qīng eras (1644-1911)
    • Examination of Chinese martial arts in three major stories of the Míng era (1368-1644)
    • Examination of Chinese martial arts in the major stories of the Qīng-Zeit (1644-1911)
  • Section VI: The schools of Chinese Quánfǎ
    • The sources of the schools
    • The Quánshù of the Shàolín school
    • The Quánshù of the Wǔdāng school
    • Tàijíquán
  • Section VII: Secret societies and Chinese Quánfǎ
    • Various societies and Quánfǎ
    • The Society of Justice and Harmony (Yìhétuán; the Boxers) and Chinese Quánfǎ
  • Section VIII: Zhōu Zǐhé (Shū Shiwa) and Pangainūn
    • Uechi-ryū and Chinese Quánfǎ
    • Zhōu Zǐhé (Shū Shiwa) and the Buddhist priest Cǎo Qīng
    • Notes
  • uechi-ryuSection IX: Dámó dàshī (Bodhidharma) as the founder of the Chinese Chán-Buddhism (Japanese: Zen, Sanskrit: Dhyana)
    • The characters Dámó and Dámó
    • Bodhidharma (Sanskrit)
    • Dámó‘s (Bodhidharma‘s) pilgrimage to China in order to train and to teach
    • Dámó (Bodhidharma) and the Shàolín monastery
    • Dámó‘s (Bodhidharma‘s) entrance into the the Shàolín monastery
    • Nine years zazen meditation facing the wall
    • The city of  Luòyáng at the end of the 5th century
    • The Legend of doctrinal Zen conversation (Mondō) between Dámó and Emperor Wǔ, the First Noble Truth, and the Brokeback seeking of Huì Kě, the 2nd patriarch of Chán Buddhism
    • Discourse on the dual entrance to the path and the four types of exercise (Èr rù sì xíng lùn)
    • Notes

Chapter V: 13 years in China – Uechi Kanbun‘s experiences

  • Section I: A group of young people of the Meiji era devoted themselves to the training of pugilism (Quánshù) in China
  • Section II: 10 years era of apprenticeship
  • Section III: Three years of Dōjō construction

Chapter VI: Seventeen years of caginess after returning home

  • Section I: Why was the initiation into martial arts continuously refused?

Chapter VII: The Wakayama era

  • Section I: The establishment of the Pangainūn-ryū Karate-jutsu Kenkyūsho
  • Section II: Uechi Kanei in Ōsaka and Hyōgo Prefecture, and the birth of Uechi-ryū

uechi-ryuChapter VIII: The Characteristics of Uechi-ryū Karate-dō

  • Section I: The Shūbukan and its master-pupil relationship
  • Section II: Teaching system of Uechi-ryū Karate-dō and its philosophy

Chapter IX: Uechi-ryū and the Pacific War/WWII

  • Section I: The indigenousity of Uechi-ryū in Okinawa
  • Section II: Uechi Kanei in the campaign as a soldier of the Imperial Army
  • Section III: The end of the Pacific War/WWII

Chapter X: The global expansion of Uechi-ryū Karate-dō

  • Section I: From the Uechi-ryū Karate-jutsu Kenkyūsho to the Uechi-ryū Karate-dō Sōke Shūbukan
  • Section II: Uechi-ryū and the school of Sōke Uechi Kanei

Chapter XI: The of current state of the Budō world in the United States of America

    • Article 1
    • Article 2
    • Article 3
    • Article 4
    • Article 5
    • Article 6
    • Article 7
    • Article 8
    • Article 9

Chapter XII: Karate-dō as an intangible cultural asset

  • Duechi-ryuSection I: Karate as a simultaneous expression of dynamics and aesthetics
  • Section II: The essence of the heritage and of the tradition
  • Bibliographical References

Fourth Collection: The Karate and Kobudō world of Okinawa (by Takamiyagi Shigeru, Nakamatsu Ken, Yonamine Kōsuke, and Tōbaru Keichō

(This fourth collection contains description and history etc. of all associations, Honbu, and many branch dojo of all styles of Karate, Kobudo, and others like Motobu Udundi etc.)

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“Tinbe” in Satsuma monograph on Chinese language studies, 1812.

Shimazu Shigehide (1745-1833) was a feudal lord (daimyō) of the latter Edo period. He was the 25th head of the Shimazu family, and the 8th feudal lord of the Satsuma fief. He was one of the so-called Ranpeki-daimyō, i.e. a feudal lord that devoted himself to Dutch studies.

In 1771 he established the Satsuma clan school with Yamamoto Shūsui as the professor, and as a training place for the martial arts he established the Enbukan 演武館 or House of Martial Arts Training.

Shimazu Shigehide (1745-1833)

Shimazu Shigehide (1745-1833)

Shimadzu Shigehide had a liking for Chinese pronounciations and is said to have even used them in his communication with his court attendants. In 1812, 5 volumes of the „Description of the Colloquial Language of China“ (Nanzan Zokugo-ko Maki) was published under his name. This work began to evolve by asking the Chinese interpreters at Nagasaki to collect colloquial Chinese language and to add the phonological translation in Japanese. Begun in 1767, it was finished in five volumes only after 45 years, in 1812.

In volume four, we find a chapter on armaments (兵部) and in it a list of the names and pronunciations of various military instruments, among them the rattan shield called Tengpai in Chinese. Phonologically transcribed into Japanese it is given here as “Djinbai”.

In Chinese sources on Ryūkyū, this sort of rattan shield had been mentioned over centuries as an armament used in Sino-Ryukyuan maritime relations.

Tinbe in Satsuma monograph on Chinese languae studies, 1812.

Tinbe in Satsuma monograph on Chinese languae studies, 1812.

We find the same rattan shield mentioned for the 1867 martial arts performances presented to the Chinese investiture envoys at the royal tea villa in Sakiyama (Uchaya-udun).

And it was this rattan shield were the name “Tinbē” came from and is still used for the shield in various Okinawan martial arts. It should be noted though, that all Kata performed with the Tinbē are relatively new, 20th century developments.

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On Jiryō no Kon

Did you ever hear people say

“One Kata is enough for a lifetime.”

I agree.

There was this idea that emerged over time. It had several insights at its basis, insights earned by sweat, pain and blood. For one, I noticed that learning a “higher” Kata led to my better understanding of previously learned Kata.

Ok, that’s pretty obvious.

Next, the longer and more complex Kata often contained the same techniques and combinations as the previously learned ones.

Pretty obvious, too.

So it seemed to me at least partially true that “simple” Kata constitute simplifications of “higher” Kata. In some cases there is no doubt: A statistical review of the technical content clearly confirmed this.

One day I was struck by the fact that certain tactics that are really handy and transport partially universal principles, are exclusively found in “higher” Kata. I am talking about Kata that are rarely taught, if ever. And these, to be honest, are where the fun begins.

So what I did was – put simple – writing down all techniques, stances, combinations etc. found in roundabout twenty Kata. For example, the oldest written and partially illustrated historical source I used for technical assessment is from 1930.

As many people know, I have spent years in practical and theoretical studies on the subject. I did benchmarking, standardization, comparisons on best practices, you name it. I made a scientific assessment of a large number of traditional design patterns and techniques.

In other words: I created a database of content which allowed for being analyzed. One thing I did was a redundancy analysis: I compared all the techniques and combinations and determined which only occurred once, which occurred repeatedly, how long the various combos are, etc.

I could tell you in a second how many Tsuki there are in all Kata of one of the schools I analyzed. Or how often the combination Jōdan-ura-uchi/Jōdan-uchi/Chūdan-zuki/Soto-uke appears, in what Kata and at which point exactly.

So, for example, I was able to very accurately determine recurrences.

Of course I gave numbers to each technique, too.

Besides the raw tecchnical content, I also placed special emphasis on the layout, or the design pattern. Like intros, outros, bridges, interludes, breaks, specific technical topics and combinations etc.

The master plan.

The architecture.

I decided on one such master plan – the layout rack of a high-profile Kata – to be used as a framework for my own Kata. By using my redundancy analysis, I than integrated other parts and gradually kept on elaborating the Kata.

While doing so I strictly adhered to the previously determined design principles.

In this way I included all the major techniques, combinations and tactics into nothing other than a classical framework.

Finally I created a “style sheet” and applied it to content and layout.

And thus I created my own practice beast, my own Kata.

The price for the above is high: It is very long and complex and contains the most difficult choreographies around. Honestly, I can hardly imagine that anyone will be able to learn the Kata without already knowing the underlying Kata and having practiced them for many years.

Naturally, it’s not a popular idea to create something oneself in this field of interest. Actually, it is considered an impertinence. I am completely aware of this. And I agree.

Yet, the point is:

what does a person claim?

I do not claim it to be an original Okinawan Kata.

I do claim that it is 100% based on Okinawan cudgel fencing, though.

I do not claim to have it learned from some old secret Okinawan master I met and who taught the Kata to me only before he disappeared forever.

I do claim that I trained hard and for many hours, months, and years on the verge of capacity under great teachers as well as on my own.

I also do claim that the Kata is the result of my personal interest-driven effort to apply modern design tools and first-class engineering to “create” an innovative, next-generation practice machine upon the classical templates that there are. And I do claim that I did it for me personally.

Many people will laught at this:

it is “l’art pour l’art”.

Some people will disagree on the idea itself, on the method used, etc. and critisize it. And I respect your opinion.

Yet it is non-negotiable. I am content with it.

In the end, the Kata is nothing but my personal tribute to traditional Okinawan cudgel fencing (Bōjutsu).

It’s just a tribute.

I baptized it Jiryō no Kon.

Jiryo no Kon

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Another positive recension for my Karate 1.0

Thanks to Russ Ebert I received another positive recension for my Karate 1.0. This is especially valuable Feedback for me, as it comes from the “Koryu Bujutsu” circle, which is usually quite strict and doesn’t hesitate to openly point out any claims or straightforward BS.

Russ Ebert

28. Oktober 2014

Karate 1.0 or Karate no Genryu.

I have to say I am impressed. This is a work of love.

Some books you see and you say “Yeah sure…complete history..” well, this is no joke.

Karate 1.0: Parameter of an Ancient Martial Art.

This is the book on the history and tradition of Karate right here.

There is no BS do-it-yourself photos, just pure inundated research and history. In some places it seems to go a little too far back, but that is okay because it comes around in the text. You have to push on.

I give this book a THUMBS UP for anyone studying Koryu Bujutsu history. Simply outstanding.

Well done Andreas Quast

You weren’t kidding. I am halfway through and I am totally enthralled. NOT FOR THE HISTORY READING UNABLED.

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