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Kung-Fu And Karate
The art of Kung-Fu 功夫 originated some 2000 years ago in China and is the ancestor of all Eastern "boxing" type arts, including Karate. It was practiced by Shaolin 少林 Buddhist monks as means of defence of the Shaolin Monastery 少林寺 from bandits, strengthening their physiques and maintaining good health. Modern Karate 空手道 evolved from Chinese boxing on the island of Okinawa. After the conquering Japanese forces placed a ban on the possession of weapons, the Okinawans were forced to defend themselves with their hands alone, hence the name Karate or "empty hand". It was not until the 1920's, and the realisation that Karate could be of benefit to the military, that it was introduced to Japan.
Shitoryu And Shukokai
The two main strands of Karate in Okinawa consisted of the Shuri-te system and the Naha-te system. The Shuri-te system, from where Shotokan karate derived, was known for its long range techniques and lengthy stances, while the Naha-te system, from where Goju karate derived, was known for its shorter techniques and close-in fighting ability. Sensei Kenwa Mabuni 摩文仁 賢和 (1889-1952) trained diligently under both systems for many years, and from his studies, took the best aspects from each to form what is now known as the Shitoryu 糸東流 style of Karate.
|Shukokai 修交会 is a group of closely related styles of Karate, based on Tani-ha Shitoryu, a branch of Shitoryu developed by Chojiro Tani 谷長治郎 in the late 1940s. The first dojo where Tani taught his style was opened in Kobe, Japan in 1946 and named Shukokai, meaning the "Way for All".|
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