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Thread: Legitimate Karate Systems

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    Default Legitimate Karate Systems

    What is considered a legitimate karate style ? example - If some guy trained in Shorin Ryu for many years achieved rank such as 4th Dan or 5th Dan, but decided to break away and form his own "ideals" , would that person's "creation" of karate still be considered legitimate style of karate ?

    Can a person claimed lineage if he / she no longer adheres or follow his/her former Sensei's teaching and philosophy ?

    Thanks !
    Prince Loeffler
    Shugyokan Dojo

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    Wow Prince that is a loaded question!

    My take over the last few years has been that all styles are "made up" so I don't bemoan modern creations as much as I used to. As long as they are based in some form of reality, give an accurate lineage and follow what they teach it's all good.


    That being said I still have a great fondness and awe of all things Okinawan in matters of Karate.
    R. Kite
    Budoka 34
    "Study hard and all things can be accomplished; give up and you will amount to nothing".

    -Yamaoka Tesshu

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    Do you mean systems like Shotokan, Goju Ryu, Uechi ryu, Kyokushinkai, Shito Ryu, Wado Ryu, etc et6c...they are all fusions of other older methods.
    Harry Cook

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    Do they still train under their teacher? Or have they decided that they know all there is to know and no longer can be bothered to train? There is something satisfying about seeing my teacher being corrected by his teacher, a sense of continuence, of connection.

    Those that cut those ties are moving down a different path.

    But is it legitimate? I don't doubt the martial skills presented and taught, but am not so sure of the martial art.
    Respectfully
    Mark W. Swarthout, Shodan

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    Well, Tatuso Shimabuku formed his own relatively modern system, Isshinryu.

    However, here were his parameters:

    1) He was already a "master" in three well established systems (four if you include the Kobudo),

    2) He had permission from the headmaster of each one of those systems,

    3) He kept kata's from all three systems (the ones that fit his philosophy), and only made changes to those kata's to fit his philosophy (i.e. veritcal punches, shortened stances, etc.). He did keep the fundamental moves. By doing so, he maintained "lineage" with the katas.

    4) He took Kusanku and added the Sai. When he did though, he added elements of Kyan No Sai to legitimize it.

    5) He created one kata only on his own, using elements of the other established katas,

    So, I think that if we use Soke Shimabuku as an example of how to create a new system, then I would say that maintaining lineage is crucial for legitimacy. He basically just played a variation of already well know songs. He put his own mark on them.

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    Default Legitimate Karate Systems

    Hi Neil;Being somewhat of an Isshinryu buff, please let me address your
    points as a quest for the correct history of Shimabuku Sensei and Isshinryu.
    thank you

    1.Could you name those systems and who gave him Master status in them.
    Kobudo Shihan is on record in Taira Shinken Sensei book.

    2. How is this established.

    3. I know Shorin and Goju Ryu what is the third one or are you counting
    Taira Sensei Kobudo?

    4. Don`t really think it is established that Kyan no Sai Kata as done in
    Isshinryu was made by Kyan Chotoku Sensei or by Shimabuku Sensei from
    Sai Kihon he may have learned from Kyan Chotoku Sensei.

    5. Total agreement.

    Soke is not really an Okinawan traditional title but has crept in since
    Shimabuku Sensei passed away.

    thank you
    bill steigner
    Jinbukai
    william steigner

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackwood
    Do they still train under their teacher?
    Hi Mr. Blackwood, Let say they have stopped training with their Original Sensei but maintain training with other senseis that are not from the same ryu. Would the lineage from the original still be claimed ?
    Prince Loeffler
    Shugyokan Dojo

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    Quote Originally Posted by Budoka 34
    Wow Prince that is a loaded question!

    My take over the last few years has been that all styles are "made up" so I don't bemoan modern creations as much as I used to. As long as they are based in some form of reality, give an accurate lineage and follow what they teach it's all good.


    That being said I still have a great fondness and awe of all things Okinawan in matters of Karate.

    Hi Mr. Kite, I realized it is a loaded questions, but I thought I'd asked as it is killing my brain cells one at a time
    Prince Loeffler
    Shugyokan Dojo

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    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Cook
    Do you mean systems like Shotokan, Goju Ryu, Uechi ryu, Kyokushinkai, Shito Ryu, Wado Ryu, etc et6c...they are all fusions of other older methods.
    Harry Cook

    Morning Mr. Cook, I do mean the systems qouted above. The proper follow up questions with this scenario:

    let say I am in Okinawa training in Goju Ryu, Then I split after 25 years of training and holds a rank of Godan. I call my art "Goju Budo-ryu Karate", My arts has no traced of Goju Ryu into my recent " Creation" Would my art be recognized as legitimate karate style in Okinawa ? And it is obvious by then that I should not include the name "Goju" in my creation because I no longer practiced the art even though I have trained for many years.

    Thanks again.
    Prince Loeffler
    Shugyokan Dojo

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    Prince,

    Whats with the Mr. Kite business? Please call me Randy.
    R. Kite
    Budoka 34
    "Study hard and all things can be accomplished; give up and you will amount to nothing".

    -Yamaoka Tesshu

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    Quote Originally Posted by Budoka 34
    Prince,

    Whats with the Mr. Kite business? Please call me Randy.

    Very well, I will call you Randy from now on Mr. Kite... Just kidding, Thanks !
    Prince Loeffler
    Shugyokan Dojo

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    Quote Originally Posted by wsteigner
    Hi Neil;Being somewhat of an Isshinryu buff, please let me address your
    points as a quest for the correct history of Shimabuku Sensei and Isshinryu.
    thank you

    1.Could you name those systems and who gave him Master status in them.
    Kobudo Shihan is on record in Taira Shinken Sensei book.

    3. I know Shorin and Goju Ryu what is the third one or are you counting
    Taira Sensei Kobudo?
    Thanks for the correction. As I understand it, Choki Motubo was not known to have left behind a "Ryu", but I have read that he was known to have refferred to his art as "Kempo". He was known to be a major influence though on T. Shimabuku.

    Kyan Chotoku - Shorin-Ryu
    Miyagi Chojun - Goju-Ryu
    Choki Motobu - (He referred to his art as Kempo)
    Taira Shinken - Taira Sensei Kobudo

    Quote Originally Posted by wsteigner
    2. How is this established.
    This is what has been passed down. He had sought permission before establishing "Isshin-Ryu".

    Quote Originally Posted by wsteigner

    4. Don`t really think it is established that Kyan no Sai Kata as done in
    Isshinryu was made by Kyan Chotoku Sensei or by Shimabuku Sensei from
    Sai Kihon he may have learned from Kyan Chotoku Sensei.
    Correct.

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    I think if you trained in GojunRyu (or any other style for that matter) for many years you could not help but incorporate Goju-like elements into your new system. even if you created new kata they would look a bit like Goju Ryu. You would not be able to help yourself, because the techniques, stances etc etc would be 'natural' to you. Of course if you trained in a number of systems you would have a bigger choice, but an educated eye should still be able to spot some of the root systems.
    if you look at Kyokushinkai in its first say 20 to 30 years of life you could still see the Goju and Shotokan derived elements.
    As to whether your new system would be legitimate on Okinawa. If your students entered and did well in the various competitions etc etc held in Okinawa and Japan that would go some way to being accepted. Many will say that tournament success means nothing, but if you keep on beating the representatives of the older systems you will gain a measure of acceptance yourself.
    Harry Cook

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    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Cook
    I think if you trained in GojunRyu (or any other style for that matter) for many years you could not help but incorporate Goju-like elements into your new system. even if you created new kata they would look a bit like Goju Ryu. You would not be able to help yourself, because the techniques, stances etc etc would be 'natural' to you. Of course if you trained in a number of systems you would have a bigger choice, but an educated eye should still be able to spot some of the root systems.
    if you look at Kyokushinkai in its first say 20 to 30 years of life you could still see the Goju and Shotokan derived elements.
    As to whether your new system would be legitimate on Okinawa. If your students entered and did well in the various competitions etc etc held in Okinawa and Japan that would go some way to being accepted. Many will say that tournament success means nothing, but if you keep on beating the representatives of the older systems you will gain a measure of acceptance yourself.
    Harry Cook
    Thanks Mr. Cook, these are all very good points. I thank you for these. Funakoshi's Shotokan was recognized by the Japanese. I often wondered if the Okinawan accepted his style at all despite the fact he trained in an Okinawan system.
    Prince Loeffler
    Shugyokan Dojo

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    In the past, I think a number of Okinawan teachers were very critical of Shotokan, saying it was children's karate etc etc. However Shotokan now has a fairly large following on Okinawa (JKA shotokan primarily...or so I have been told), and it is noticeable that all of the things Gichin Funakoshi intoduced (gradings, belts, dogi etc etc) are used by the majority of Okinawan karateka.
    Harry Cook

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