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Thread: Hayashi-ha Shito- Chatan Yara Kusanku

  1. #1
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    Default Hayashi-ha Shito- Chatan Yara Kusanku

    Does anyone know why the Hayashi-ha Shito- Ryu Karate. Kata CHATAN YARA KUSANKU ,differs from the orthodox Okinawan version of Chatan Yara Kusanku ?
    " The FUTURE is UNWRITTEN,KNOW YOUR RIGHTS"
    The Clash.

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    The topic of Chatan Yara (no) Kusanku has been coming up for some years on different sites on the internet but I haven’t followed these kind of discussions for a while, so you might do a new search. I probably am not the best person to comment since I currently am not very active in Shito-ryu (the last few years I have mainly concentrated on HYR).

    Nevertheless I was very active in Shito Ryu for more than 30 years and I believe Chatan Yara (no) Kusanku first came to my attention long ago during a kata competition that I saw in Japan. I don’t remember if it was a Hayashi-ha or Kenshukai (association set up by Ogasahara, student of Abe sensei) competition (it was certainly not a Shitokai one, because that I would have remembered).
    Personally, even when I trained in the dojo of Mabuni Kenei (in bentencho, Japan) for 1 year, I only knew of Kusanku dai, sho and shihoKusanku.
    It is only when I was back in Europe that I learned Chatan Yara (no) Kusanku from Nakahashi sensei.

    It is believed that Chatan Yara (or Yara from Chatan)was a student of Kusanku, and that he made this kata, to pass it on through Sakugawa, who on his turn might have thought it to Sokon Matsumura, to eventually land with Itosu. Itosu probably made the modifications to get to Kusanku dai and also created a new kata called Kusanku sho. Others might also have studied the kata with Matsumura (Chotou Kyan?).

    I don’t know how the current “competition” kata, that is attributed to shito-ryu (students from hayasi-ha, shitokai, all perform a very similar version) was introduced. Remarkably, I never saw the kata listed in the Itosu kai (association based on the line that Sakagami continued), and if it is, then it must be recent. This (and the fact that I never heared of it while being in the dojo of Mabuni Kenei) could suggest that the kata was not spread by Mabuni Kenwa.

    I also saw on Youtube an “old style” Chatan Yara Kusanku. It definitely is a Kusanku kata, although there are indeed differences with the kata that are better known through the international competitions.
    There is a lot of speculations going on about the origin of Chatan Yara Kusanku, but I think not much is based on real facts. In fact recent speculations (last 20-30 years) might be based on speculations of the past. No-one who was there can comment so we can never be sure. Fact is that because of kata competition, there is a tendency to favour beautiful and spectacular kata (jumps in unsu and chatan Yara Kusanku).
    Is this the reason (adaptation for competition) for the difference in what you call the orthodox version, and is this “orthodox” Okinawa version the real transmission or a drift that occurred through someone in Okinawa?
    Guy Buyens
    Hontai Yoshin Ryu (本體楊心流)
    BELGIAN BRANCH http://www.hontaiyoshinryu.be/

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    I always wondered if Hayashi Sensei, when living in Okinawa learned a different version of “CHATAN YARA KUSANKU” ?
    " The FUTURE is UNWRITTEN,KNOW YOUR RIGHTS"
    The Clash.

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    Nullius in verba

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