kata creators

   
Sokon Matsumura

Sokon Matsumura

Sokon "Bushi" Matsumura (1809-1896) was one of the original karateka's of Okinawa. He studied Chuan Fe in China as well as other martial arts and brought what he learned back to Okinawa, where he taught a select few students and became a well known master. He was assigned as instructor and protectorate to the king of the Ryukyu islands. After Japan assumed control of Okinawa 40 years later however, Matsumura Sensei moved to Tokyo and taught and developed karate for the rest of his life

   
Yatsune ("Ankoh") Itosu

Yatsune ("Ankoh") Itosu

Yatsune Itosu (1830 – 1915) One of the most influential karate practitioners was Ankoh Itosu. Born in Shuri, Okinawa he taught karate in the public school systems. He felt that some of the kata or techniques were too difficult for school children to learn, so he developed a simplified series of katas in order to improve the teaching of karate in a public school setting. He also was the instructor of Chosin Chibana.

   
Kanryo Higashionna

Kanryo Higashionna

Kanryo Higashionna (1840 - 1910) the "Fist of Naha", is known as the man behind the Goju-ryu karate style. Higashionna began his training in Okinawa it was actually in China that the true seeds of Goju-ryu were planted. Higashionna went to China and studied under a man named Master Woo (Ru in Japanese) who was a practitioner of Chinese boxing. Higashionna trained under Master Woo for aproximately 15 to 20 years.

On his return to Okinawa he combined his native fighting system with the Chinese system and became the father of Naha-Te (Fist of Naha). It did not take long before his fame spread throughout the island and students started to come to him for tuition. Among them was a student named Chogun Miyagi.

   
"Tode" Sakagawa

"Tode" Sakagawa

Satunuku "Tode" Sakagawa (1733 – 1815) born March 5, 1733,, It is believed Sakugawa became a student of Kusanku in 1756.
Sakugawa was a student of Takahara Peichin (1683-1760) until the arrival of Kusanku in Okinawa. At that time Sakugawa was granted permission from Takahara Peichin to train under Kusanku.

At the age 17, Tode Sakugawa began his martial arts training under an Okinawan monk named Peichin Takahara. At age 23, Sakugawa was advised by Takahara to leave and train under Kusanku, a Chinese master in Kung Fu. Sakugawa learned valuable lessons from Kung Fu and went on to become a great master himself.

Sakugawa returned to Okinawa in 1762 to introduce this fighting method. It is said that Sakugawa was awarded the title of Satonushi for his services to the Okinawa King.

Sakugawa soon started to teach the Chinese hand way in Okinawa. Combining what both his teachers had taught him, he structured a training system. This made him the first Okinawan teacher of Tode.

Tode Sakagawa was an important factor in the development of "Te" on the Okinawan Islands. Sakugawa was credited with forming several "Bo" kata, which are still practiced today. In addition, Sakugawa also created "Dojo Kun" which has become a tradition with many styles.

When Tode Sakugawa was 78, he taught his greatest student, Sokon Matsumura the art of "Te". It would be Sakagawa's student, Sokon Bushi Matsumura, who would be considered the forefather of many Karate styles.

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