Shotokan Karate A Brief History

Nick Polley Shotokan Karate

Although Karate is usually thought of as a Japanese art it is widely accepted that the birth place of Karate as we know it was Okinawa, the largest of the Ryukyu islands to the south of Japan. Okinawa is one of the 60 small islands south of mainland Japan and owing to its strategic location, it was often visited by the Japanese, Chinese, Koreans, and other foreigners.

Okinawa had always experienced conflict between rival kingdoms, but in 1429, the kingdoms were united and in order to maintain this unity, a decree was issued which banned possession of all weapons. In 1609, Okinawa was, conquered by the people of the Satsuma Domain of Kyushu. Without weapons to defend themselves against these invaders, the Okinawans began to develop the art of Okinawa-te . It was taught and trained in secret through the beginning of the eighteenth century. Over the years however the prohibition against karate training began to diminish.

In 1868 Gichin Funakoshi was born premature and frail and was given to his grandparents to raise. After he had trained a couple of yearsin karate, he realized that his health had improved tremendously and that he was no longer frail. It was at this time, he decided to devote himself to karate.

Funakoshi worked for many years as a primary school teacher, but then resigned to open a karate school. He was asked to perform a karate demonstration to be held in Kyoto, in 1922. After this he remained in Japan and began to teach karate in some Tokyo University clubs. At first times were very hard, but soon karate became to grow more popular, in 1935 Funakoshi pupils built the Shotokan dojo, and karate was taught in many places in Japan.



Image Gallery

mick dewey seku Roger Stephens karate SEKU Andy Taylor karate nick polley karate traditional karate in worthing

Contact Us

If you are interested in learning more please come along and train. The 1st lesson is free.

Address: St Johns Hall, Ripley Road,

Telephone:01903 535855