GOJU RYU KARATE

 

The word "GOJU" means hard and soft. "GO" is the Japanese word for hardness and "JU" is the word for softness. The system is based on an Oriental concept that all hardness and stiffness is not good. At the same time all softness and too much gentleness is not good. The two should be complement each other. Combining the two give Goju Ryu Karate it's beautiful disciplined movements, filled with grace, flowing forms and strength.

Actions are sometimes very fast and other times very slow and majestic. Goju Ryu relies on an aggressive style of attack with emphasis on delivering blows 'Hard' but with easy effort and rapid succession, maneuvering not only forwards and backwards but from side to side too.

Master Chojun Miyagi, the founder of Goju-Ryu, was born on April 25th, 1888 in Naha, a majorr city in Okinawa. He belong to one of the wealthiest families in Naha. His mother believed that a man had to be mentally and physically strong to face the world and so when he was 11 years, they took him to a Karate master -Aragaki Ryuko. After giving him hard physical training, Sensai Ryuko introduced young Master Miyagi to his friend Master Kanryo Higoshionna. Master Miyagi trained with Master Higashionna for 15 years till the atter's death in October 1916. After the latter's death, Master Miyagi travelled to Central china where he studied Zen as well as the Martial arts as his Sensai before him had done.

Upon his return to Okinawa, Master Miyagi began teching Karate. Miyagi, Unlike his Master Higoshionna, began to organise and systematized the style. As a physical education teacher in the Okinawa school system, master Miyagi began to introduced other elements in the physical training of Karate. master Miyagi introduced two new Katas into the system that were much simpler than the traditional Kata which Master Higoshionna had brought from China. these two Kata, known as Geiksai Ich and Geiksai Ni, served to attract many young men into th estyle and helped to popularize Goju Ryu.

As his popularity grew , Master Miyagi travelled to japan to teach goju Ryu Karate. Although Master Miyagi is credited as being founder of goju ryu, he did not invent the system.
Sensai Yamaguchi, a deeply religious man, first heard of Goju Ryu Karate and of the great Sensai chojun Miyagi. Sensai Yamaguchi wrote to Miyagi and invited him to come to Japan. Miyagi accepted the invitation and left to Japan.The meeting of the two was to be a fateful one, not only for Goju, but for all karate.

Yamaguchi Sensai immediately fell in love with the strange and intricate patterns diaplayed by Miyagi. The hard and soft approach was for him. when Sensai Miyagi left for Okinawa, he left behind him a well trained and educated follower of Goju.

The first thing Yamaguchi did was set about establishing a dojo. He organized the first dojo in Western Japan in 1030. Under his cpable leadsership, the school attracted new adherents and Goju began to fan out across the island nation.

Early in the Japanese development, Yamagichi Sensai made fundamental changes in the Goju school that were to redically alter the course of Karate. After observing his students he came to conclusion that the strict Okiwan brand of Karate, with it's chinese origins was too static and limited in style. He believed that just the practice steps in sparring called Kumite inhibited many students. So, he devised free style Kumite at progression to got o freestyle sparring. Later the sparring or Kumite underwent further transformation using knowledge of the other Martial Arts to improve it still more.