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Thread: itosu's senior student

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    Default itosu's senior student

    Quickfire question...

    Who was Itosu's senior student?

    a) Kentsu Yabu
    b) Hanashiro Chomo
    c) Kenwa Mabuni
    d) Gichin Funakoshi
    e) Kanken Toyama
    f) Chosin Chibana
    g) Other

    I don't mean who 'joined' first, who was the oldest or who ended up with the highest Dan grade. I mean, if they were to all line up in order of seniority, who's at the head of the line?
    Simon Keegan 4th Dan
    www.bushinkai.org.uk

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    For me if I was to 'proclaim' one the Senior it would be Chosin Chibana.

    My history is not good on this subject but I beleive Hanashiro Chomo was around before Chibana which when they were both alive I beleive would make him Senior, taking age of person and training time into key consideration.

    Im told age, especially for the Okinawans is a huge representation of Seniority in all aspects of life so difficult to discount it.
    Rgds,

    Jim Neeter
    Shorin Ryu Seito Matsumura Karate and Kobudo UK
    www.shoshinkanuk.org

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    Hello,

    since A. Itosu left no written document wherein he states that XY is “my senior student / successor”, it is difficult to answer. Foremost it will become a political question. For example, followers of H. Kinjō for sure would argue that C. Hanashiro (one of H. Kinjō's teachers) is the most senior student of A. Itosu.

    On the other hand there are few examples of students of A. Itosu who openly state that they not regard him as their primarily teacher, which is the case for G. Funakoshi.

    Regards,

    Henning Wittwer

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    Thanks for your answers gentlemen. I have also read that Kenwa Mabuni regarded himself as successor to Itosu and awarded his student Ryusho Sakagami with the title "third successor of Itosu-ha."

    See here:
    http://www.genbukai.org/sakagami.htm

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/shitō-ryū
    Simon Keegan 4th Dan
    www.bushinkai.org.uk

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    background info for Chosin Chibana - http://www.shidokankaratedojo.com/Ch...a%20Sensei.htm


    background info for Chomo Hanashiro -
    http://shitokai.com/hanashiro.php

    I have no idea on accuracy but at least it gives a starting point.
    Rgds,

    Jim Neeter
    Shorin Ryu Seito Matsumura Karate and Kobudo UK
    www.shoshinkanuk.org

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    Default thanks

    thanks jim. I have seen those pages before. They are good bios. Personally i'd go with chomo, but just curious about other people's views.
    Simon Keegan 4th Dan
    www.bushinkai.org.uk

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    Default ryu

    just noticed e-budo wouldn't let me post the name of mabuni's style on the link because if the first four letters. I wondered why i never read about courses in scunthorpe!
    Simon Keegan 4th Dan
    www.bushinkai.org.uk

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    Default Itosu's students

    Simon,

    According to an interview conducted by Estrada Sensei in the 1970's with Nakazato Sensei, Chibana Sensei told Nakazato that Yabu Sensei was Itosu's senior student with Hanashiro as very close to equal. When Yabu died, Chibana states that Hanashiro Sensei was senior. Then after Hanashiro Sensei's death, he (Chibana) was senior.
    However, Yabu and Hanashiro were not just Itosu's students. It would be as if junior yudansha in your sensei's dojo came to be your students afer your sensei died. In a family setting, it would be more like raising your little brother instead of him being your son. They had what Matsumura had started in them, and Itosu may have molded it; whereas Itosu students such as Chibana Sensei only had Itosu version of Matsumura karate to learn and build on.
    I do feel that this answer is nearly impossible to truly answer though. It doesn't necessarily depend on the oldest or longest training student, but rather how close the student was to Itosu, what he learned, how well he learned it (proficiency), AND what he did with it to develop his skills and own personal path with it. It also depends on who tells the story, right? For example, how many years have westerns been training in Chibana Sensei's lineage of karate? Only in last few years has it came public that Chibana Sensi had a family member he passed his karate onto and intended to name family successor. Also interesting that their mechanics differ from others, much like Matsumura Seito (Matsumura family) differs from other shorin-ryu lineages. If Soken Sensei would have never came to light, how many would even know of Nabe Matsumura? Also many didn't know of Choki Motobu's son in the West until recent years.

    Hope that helped.

    Walt

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    that's a great reply walt, it makes perfect sense that itosu's senior students would be those who were in a sense of the same lineage generation as him, having also been taught by matsumura. I suppose we could say yabu and chomo were the senior 'first generation' itosu students and chibana the senior of the second generation. The example you gave is actually very relevant to me. When i started teaching i 'inheritted' some of my sensei's students, including two brown belts who had trained with him longer than i had in that style. And as you say, they did become my senior students back then, thank you for your replies.
    Simon Keegan 4th Dan
    www.bushinkai.org.uk

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    Quote Originally Posted by iwahte View Post
    Simon,

    According to an interview conducted by Estrada Sensei in the 1970's with Nakazato Sensei, Chibana Sensei told Nakazato that Yabu Sensei was Itosu's senior student with Hanashiro as very close to equal. When Yabu died, Chibana states that Hanashiro Sensei was senior. Then after Hanashiro Sensei's death, he (Chibana) was senior. ...

    Walt
    Hi Walt,
    Where can I get a copy of the Estrada/Nakazato interview you mentioned?
    Thank you!
    Thomas Feldmann

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