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Karate events in Okinawa for February 2014

2014.02.01

Here are the major karate related events planned in Okinawa for February 2014.

Senior High School Spring Tournament
Date: Feb. 1    
Venue: Nago City
Organizer: Okinawa Pref. JHS Federation

7th Uruma Wakashishi Cup
Date: Feb. 8        
Venue: Uruma City
Organizer: Executive committee

5th Tomigusuku City Tournament
Date: Feb. 9        
Venue: Tomigusuku City    
Organizer: Tomigusuku City Athletics Association

Okinawa Pref. Uechi-ryu Youth Tournament
Date: Feb. 15    
Venue: Kadena Town
Organizer: Executive committee

Ryukyu Karate Roots Research Committee Mtg.
(Reservation needed. Ask us if interested)
Date: Feb. 16    
Venue: Urasoe City
Organizer: Urasoe City

29th OKF Demonstration / 9th Team kumite tournament
Date: Feb. 22    
Venue: Okinawa Pref. Budokan
Organizer: Okinawa Prefecture Karatedo Federation

8th Oyama Youth Center tournament
Date: Feb. 23
Venue: Ginowan City
Organizer: Oyama Youth Center Parent Ass.

 

Note that our karate bureau doesn’t endorse these events. They are announced as a source of information only.

According to the event, there might be or not an entrance fee. For more details, please contact directly the organizers.

If you wish to ad an event, please let us know.

(Source: Okinawa Karate News)

A kiwi karate girl at the source of Kempo

2014.01.31

While we helped some people early January in order to encounter karate in Okinawa, Kelly Wells from New Zealand was our first real visitor for 2014. An acupuncturist by profession, this 26 years old karate practitioner is a 3rd dan in Bushin Ryu Martial Arts / Dragon Society International. Having contacted our bureau last fall to see if it was possible to train in Kempo on Okinawa, we introduced her to Kiyan Toru sensei, from the Okinawa Kenpo Karatedo Association. Arrived January18 in Okinawa, she stayed in central Okinawa for two weeks and trained in Kenpo few times a week. Meanwhile, with the approval of Kiyan sensei she also trained in Goju-ryu with Hokama Tetsuhiro sensei, experienced Uechi-ryu at Murasaki-mura Center and Shorin-ryu in another local dojo. As a good memories, she was also showcased in both local newspapers: the Ryukyu Shimpo on January 21, and the Okinawa Times on January 30!

After Okinawa, Kelly is on her way to China for some more training, but this time in Chinese martial arts.

 

Below is the Ryukyu Shimpo article, with Kelly Wells in the center and Kiyan sensei to her right.

Kellywell2

The list of events for 2014 updated

2014.01.15

While Okinawan masters are already traveling abroad to teach karate in Hawaii and later in France, Okinawa is the venue of many local and international karate and kobudo events year-round. Follow this link to see what is scheduled for the year 2014 in Okinawa.

2014, the year of the horse

2014.01.07

uma

 

The 7th of the 12 signs of the Chinese zodiac, the horse is the symbol of strength, activity, energy and health, and an outgoing nature among many others. For those who enjoy Japanese culture and martial arts, Yabusame, the traditional horse-back archery is something to look into. However, the art of Yabusame is inexistent in Okinawa! In Ryukyu Islands’ martial arts, we are reminded of horse through the nunchaku which is commonly believed to come from “Mugei”, the local horse bit used to squeeze the horse’s cheekbones when riding it.

Horse bit meaning the presence of horses, what about actual horses in the Ryukyu? Well, did you know that at the time when the Ryukyu paid tribute to China horses were highly valuable items? In a book on this subject, Ryukyu University professor and leading specialist on Ryukyuan horses Shinjo Akihisa notes, “When China and Chuzan kingdom of King Satto started their relation and trade, the main items brought from Ryukyu were sulfur (a raw material used in the production of gunpowder) and horses. In exchange, Ryukyuans would receive ceramics and iron made items from China.”

Small in size (approx. 120 cm tall), Ryukyuan horses have docile temperament, strong legs and great stamina making them ideal for agricultural work and to carry loads. The most famous breeds are Yonagumi-uma and Miyako-uma, respectively Yonaguni and Miyako Island’s horses. Shinjo Akihisa also tells that “Horse fighting and horse races were also events held in villages on January 1st and 16th, and in celebration of the completion of important projects, like the opening of a public hall or the construction of a well.”

While traditional horse races called “unma-harashii” were held in the Ryukyu as proved by the vestiges Nakahara-baba and Matsuda-no-baba racetracks found respectively in Nakijin and Ginoza, the horse culture seems to have disappeared today in Okinawa. To revive such a tradition, a horse race was held on March 2, 2013 at Kodomo no Kuni – Okinawa Zoo. It was 70 years it didn’t occur in the archipelago. (Watch a video of the event). As a commemoration of the year of the horse, the Okinawa Zoo also organizes a horse exhibition up to January 31, 2014 and more “unma-harashii” events are scheduled to be held in 2014.

Well, after all these horse stories, our karate bureau wish you a happy and prosperous year of the horse and hope to see you in Okinawa soon!

Final report for 2013

2013.12.28

The year 2014 is closing in and our karate bureau is ending its business for the year 2013.

Our last foreign visitor that we helped train in Okinawa was a Swedish gentleman of 62, Sylve Holmgren. A 3rd dan with the JKA in Sweden and dojo owner, he requested to train everyday for a period of two weeks. Arrived in Okinawa December 16, he trained every morning at the Kyudokan Kenshikai Sohombu dojo of Kakazu Yoshimasa sensei while training in the evening at the Kyudokan Hombu dojo with Higa Minoru sensei. He left Okinawa on December 27.

 Syve-1  Syve-2

The year 2013 has been a busy one for many in Okinawa. According to reliable sources, this year saw close to 3,000 karate foreigners visiting the island to train with their respective masters or take part in seminars held within the prefecture. Since there was no Sekai Taikai (world tournament) or Uchinanchu festival held this year, this was maybe the biggest year for karate in term of foreign visitors.

During 2013, our karate bureau itself has welcomed 81 people who actually visited and trained in Okinawa. This is almost 4 times the number of people we welcomed in 2012. All non-connected with Okinawan organizations, they were from the following schools and styles: Aikido, Goju-ryu, Isshin-ryu, JKA, Kyokushikai, Shindo-karate, Shinkyokushin, Shito-ryu, Shotokan, Sport karate, Uechi-ryu, Wado-ryu and Yoseikan. They came from 17 countries: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the USA.

While they kept us busy every month, except January, March and July, all were sources of many fine encounters and experiences and I personally wish to thank each of them for trusting us. I hope they have enjoyed their stay and training in Okinawa as much as I have enjoyed meeting them.

Finally, the “Okinawa Traditional Karate Liaison Bureau” and I wish you a nice end of year and a Happy New Year 2014!

Miguel Da Luz

Head of the secretariat

PS: Our bureau will be “somehow” in holiday from December 28 to January 6, 2014. Please forgive us if we do not answer your messages in between this period. We will for sure get back to you early January. 

Karate1 – Premier League Tournament in Okinawa

2013.12.19

Premier League Flyer_small

Early November, it was made official by the World Karate Federation that Okinawa Prefecture will welcome this WKF sponsored competition in 2014.

Although this is not an event about Okinawa traditional karate, it is a great opportunity to promote the cradle of karate, Okinawa.

Japan Premier League Okinawa is scheduled for August 30-31, 2014.

The venue will be the Okinawa Prefecture Hall of Martial Arts in Naha City.

Studying and training in Okinawa

2013.12.12

photo 2web

A martial arts instructor from Brockton Uechi-ryu Karate Academy, Russell Chase had the dream to go live in Okinawa to follow his passion: Uechi-ryu karate. Carefully, he prepared his journey for many months, getting the necessary paperwork to enter Japan as a student (Certificate of eligibility, etc…). Meanwhile he contacted our karate bureau in December 2012 to find a local Uechi-ryu instructor in the line of his karate and who would agree to welcome him for a period of two years. Russel being affiliated through his instructor Len Testa with the Uechi-ryu Karate Association (Soke), Shimabukuro Haruyoshi sensei of the Naha Minami Shubukan accepted him in his dojo. The 3rd dan karateka in his 40ies arrived in Okinawa in the fall of 2013 and start his new life: studying Japanese and Okinawan culture in a local language school while practicing karate almost everyday. Not forgetting his friends and students in Massachusetts, he writes regularly about his experiences in the cradle of karate in his dojo “Member’s Newsletter”.

1113 BUKA Newsletter-1

Karate events in Okinawa for December 2013

2013.11.30

Here are the major karate related events planned in Okinawa for December 2013.

 

10th All Okinawa Karate Kobudo Tournament

Dates: Dec. 8                      

Venue: Okinawa International University

Organizer: Okinawa Karate Kobudo Federation

 

2nd Elementary & JHS Student Renseikai (training camp)

Dates: Dec. 14

Venue: Uruma City Gushikawa Gymnasium

Organizer: Okinawa Prefecture Karatedo Federation

 

3rd School Karatedo Demonstration

Dates: Dec. 20                    

Venue: Okinawa Pref. Budokan

Organizer: Okinawa Shogaku

 

Taishinkan Charity Demonstration

Dates: Dec. 23

Venue: Tedako Hall, Urasoe City

Organizer: Okinawa Karatedo Shorin-ryu Taishinkan Association

 

Note that the karate bureau doesn’t endorse these events.

They are announced as a source of information only.

According to the event, there might be or not an entrance fee.

For more details, please contact directly the organizers.

If you wish to ad an event, please let us know.

(Source: Okinawa Karate News)

Italian Shotokan karateka train in the cradle of karate

2013.11.29

FromItalia

From Turin in Italy, Emanuel Giordano (27), a security man by profession and his fiancée Teresa Parisi, a 28 years old nurse both practice Shotokan karate with the FESIK (Federazione Educativa Sportiva Italiana Karate). Respectively 2nd dan and blue belt, they decided to come to the birthplace of karate and contacted our karate bureau end of September to see if it was possible to train in a Shorin-ryu dojo in Okinawa. After preparing their trip, they arrived in Okinawa November 8 and stayed until the 22nd. The reasons other than karate for their trip were cultural interests and the desire to explore the island. Interested in Shorin-ryu, they trained with the masters of the Shorin-ryu Shidokan every week days. Having stayed in Naha City and the resort area Onna Village, they enjoyed a great trip of karate and holidays. So much that they will probably come again next year!

NHK Okinawa’s report on Okinawa karate

2013.11.18

A report on karate’s situation in Okinawa was aired by NHK Okinawa on November 13. This report was aired during the program “HOT EYE”. It features the recent Okinawa Prefecture Government actions for karate, the Jundokan seminar held in November with Kinjo Tsuneo sensei, and introduces our karate bureau’s activities with its head of secretariat, Miguel Da Luz.

Watch the report (In Japanese)

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