Characteristic of  SHUKOKAI Style

As a direct descendent of  Okinawan Karate's Shito-Ryu style, Shukokai has inherited the characteristics of both  Naha-te and Shuri-te styles.  It was MABUNI  Kenwa  who merged the techniques and principles of  both styles which  he had himself learned from his teachers HIGASHIONNA Kanryu  and  ITOSHU Ankoto, into  his own Karate style: Shito-Ryu , which Tani Chojiro will later turn into Shukokai. As a result, Shukokai combines the Naha-te circular breathing techniques  and the Shuri-te quick linear movements. This is most apparent in some  of the many Shukokai.'s Katas , such as  Sanchin, Tensho,  Suparunpei which come from  the Naha-te tradition,  or   Annanko, Matsukaze, and Bassai-Dai, derived from the Shuri-te tradition.    s

Karate Terminology

Shukokai is  noticeable for its relatively high number of katas . This is a direct result of MABUNI Kenwa's experience with both the Naha-te and Shuri -te styles as well as his encounter with other teacher's styles. Mabuni  was known  as "the foremost expert on kata" all over Japan.

Although Shukokai shares many of  the punches, kicks, and blocks with other popular styles of Karate, the way it executes them  sets Shukokai apart. 

TANI chojiro, who created Shukokai from MABUNI's Shito Ryu's inheritance spent his lifespan enriching his style continuously refining each technique to the highest degree, mainly re-defining the basics

which had been practiced for centuries. Shukokai  makes the study of the body's mechanics his primary focus and the delivery of the greatest impact with the least amount of effort as the end result.  Another characteristic is that each technique must be combat effective.

Both TANI Chojiro  and his successor MASUYAMA  Takeshi,   believe  that a technique, as powerful as it may be, is  useless if it cannot  be delivered under combat situations. Remember, Karate was originally a means of self-defense, not a sport. Their philosophy  is thus, that the outcome of a confrontation should be decided in a single technique, "one hit one kill", as per the way of the samurais of old.




As Shukokai Karate started spreading and became more and more universal, and  more and more a "sport" practiced by many,  losing so doing, some of its fighting original properties.

MASUYAMA  Takeshi  who inherited the main Shukokai 's association directly from his master TANI Chojiro in 1998, (hence his nowadays title of Shukokai's KANCHO) gradually took a reverse way, by delving into old documents left by MABUNI Kenwa, until he created his own style, Ryushinkan, which like a shining and bright shooting star (another meaning for the first two kanji of  Ryuushinkan) brings  us back to the original Okinawan style, enriched by all the consummate skills of the great masters, Itosu, Miyagi, Higashionna,  Mabuni, Tani .


"Karate means not only to develop one's physical strength but to learn how to defend oneself. Be helpful to all people and never fight against one person. Whenever possible, never try to strike . Never face others with fists and feet. As you practice karate, try to open your eyes brightly and keep your shoulders down, stiffen your body as if you were on the battleground. Imagine that you are facing the enemy when you practice the punching or blocking techniques. Soon you will find your own striking performance. Always concentrate attention around you. A man of character will avoid any quarrels and loves peace. Thus the more a karate-ka practices the more modest he should be with others. This is the true "karate-ka."     ITOSU  Hanko

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