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The History of Karate

THE HISTORY OF HARATE With tens of millions of proponents, Karate is one of the most loved and practiced martial arts in the world. Efforts are being made to include Karate at the Olympic Games due to its popularity though it narrowly failed to gain this honor in a 2009 vote. A surprisingly large amount of people know little of Karate, beyond its recent history, and do not know many names prior to that of Gichin Funakoshi, the Father of Modern Karate. Below, we provide you with an interesting look back at the history of Karate and add in some fun facts. OKINAWA ORIGINS The history of Karate is actually said to have been developed 2,500 years ago when an Indian Buddhist monk named Bodhidharma arrived in China. His teachings are the basis for most Chinese martial arts; however, little more is known about this era and how the monk's teachings evolved into Karate. The Pechin class of the Ryukyuans in Okinawa developed a fighting system known as te, which could be considered as the origin of modern Karate. Chinese visitors to Okinawa introduced some forms of their martial arts to the islanders shortly after trade routes were established by the Ming Dynasty in 1372. A 1609 ban on weapons in Okinawa helped to refine a series of empty-hand techniques, which were to become the basis of the Karate fighting style. Shuri, Tomari and Naha were three cities in Okinawa that were prominent in the development of te and each city gave its name to a different fighting style. MODERN KARATE Sakukawa Kanga was the teacher of Matsumara Sokon, who taught Itosu Anko who ended up being the teacher of Gichin Funakoshi, the founder of modern Karate! Funakoshi was the first to publicly demonstrate Karate in Japan in 1917. This impressed the public, especially Crown-Prince Hirohito. In 1922, Dr. Jano Kano, the man accredited with founding Judo, invited Funakoshi to demonstrate Karate at the legendary Kodokan Dojo and also asked him to stay in Japan to teach the art. Without Kano's backing, Funakoshi may not have been able to establish Karate in Japan. DIFFERENT KARATE STYLES Shito-ryu was formed by Kenwa Mabuni in Goju-ryu was developed by Chojun Miyagi in Wado-ryu was created in 1939 by Hienori Otsuka, who was a Shotokan Karate was developedby Gichin Funakoshi in 1938 and is arguably student of Funakoshi. the most famous form. Kyokushin was founded in 1957 by Korean martial artist Masutatsu Oyama. A large number of modern Karate federations use the Kyokushin method. FUN FACTS ABOUT KARATE Robert Trias opened the first Karate school in The Bo staff can be the United States in 1946 fitted depending on your height. (Phoenix, Arizona). Although some American practitioners wear a red belt, it is not an official Karate belt color and has no real place in its traditions. You may not wear anything other than a white uniform in a traditional Karate tournament. The Kata was originally created as a means of allowing monks to practice deadly moves without attracting suspicion. Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karate http://ska.org/about/history-of-karatel http://martialarts.about.com/od/styles/a/karate.htm SANDOVAL. FREESTYLE KARATE

The History of Karate

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Learn about the history of karate, such as the important factors and figures that helped create and develop karate into the forms known today.

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