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Gojuryu international Karatedo Kobudo Union Yuzenkai ......... e-mail:samuraikarate@nexyzbb.ne.jp
Study on SHOTKAN -Ryu Karate's KATA Last update Feburuary 2, 2016
I talk about the name of Syotokan KATA .
The names of present Syotokan-KATA hade created by Gichin Funakoshi.
Needless to say, he is the great Okinawan master who brought Karate from Okinawa to Japan.
However , now these two actions are sometimes pointed out as his mistake.
First of all, He abolished the Okinawan KATA's name and changed there
into the Japanese style name .For instance, "KU-SAN-KU" had changed into "KAN-KU".In addition, to be suitable for a Japanese idea, he had changed the operations of KATA. At the time,The operations of Okinawan Kata were very strange operations for many Japanese people.
I try to research the former meaning of Syotokan Kata.
Gichin FUNAKOSHI

(1868~1957)
Syotokan name(Name that Funakoshi created) Meaning of Japanese name that Funakoshi created. original Okinawan
name
Meaning of original Okinawan or Chinese name★ Comment


GAN-KAKU
   岩鶴
Crane on the rock CHIN-TO  Lower the head.沈頭 or
group leader
of festival陣頭
There is another theory that Chinto comes from the meaning of a head (頭:Tou:leader) and a camp (陣:Chin:group of festivals).It is not essentially specific Kata but is the good Kata of the group leader..
CHINTE 
   珍手
Unique techniques CHIN-TE Heaven And Earth 天地 The name is relation with religious association in Chinese.


TEKKI
   鉄騎
Iron horse NAI-HAN-CHI Attack of defense with knee 
内拌膝
It is often written as another word "内歩進" . In this case, the name meaning becomes " walk and advance to the inside ".

BASSAI
   抜塞
Destruction of fortress PAS-SAI Leopard and lion豹と獅子
or
Dancing lion
拍獅
Sai is the lion . Pas is guessed the Leopard. By the way,"Sai-fa" of Gojuryu was from the conbut of "lion".There is another theory that Passai is "拍-獅 Pau-sai" in a dialect of Fujian, China.This meaning is Shihimai(dancing lion) itself in Fujian.
MEIKYOU

   明鏡

Bright
mirror

ROU-HAI

Luohan (羅漢)
"Rouhai" (Okinawa dialect) comes from "Luohan" in Chinese.Influence from Chinese luohan quan (羅漢拳) is seen in this Kata.
This Kata features a one-legged posture.
In Okinawa, it is called the posture "the foot of the heron".So Rouhai is written 鷺牌 (Shield of the heron) in a kanji, but this is a substitute character.The name Meikyo (明鏡:Bright mirror) was created by Gichin Funakoshi."The heart brightly clear like a mirror" was an ancient Japanese important item of virtues.It was named to match the Japanese spirituality.In addition, he would have felt that the first movement was similar to the form of the round mirror.
KANKU 観空 Watching the sky KU-SAN-KU Ku-Syan-Ku
Title of honor to expert 拳聖公(Ken-sei-ko)
This means Saint of Karate.Perhaps,the person was the bureaucrat of maximum level accompanied Chinese emperor's envoy.
UNSU 雲手 Cloud and hands UN-SYU Wang Sifu
王叔(wan sensei)
This name is guessed from the master's name "Wang Shi-jiang" He also was guessed the bureaucrat of maximum level accompanied Chinese emperor's envoy.
HEIAN 平安 Peace PIN-AN Chan-Nan
(Chan sensai who came from the south)
There is another theory that HEIAN had been from the name of the Chinese martial artist who has defected to Tomari,Okinawa.
ENPI  燕飛 Flying swallow WAN-SYU Wang shihan
王師父(wang
shi fu)
He was the same person of "UNSU"
★Recently, Sensei Akio Kinjo of Karate-ka of Okinawa has clarified the mystery of the name of Kata. I support his theory because there are corresponding a lot of theories of them to my research and legend. Of course, another theories exist,too.)
※Refer to "our histry and activity" for "Wang Shijiang". Wai Shinzan, WANG Shijian, and WANG Daxing are the same persons. It is very interesting that Gojuryu and shotokanryu have "Common ancestry". KATA"WANKAN" of Shitoryu is the same etymology.
☆It is thought that Ryuei-ryu Karatedo's three Katas( Anan, Heiku, and Paiku ) originates in Chan Nan. The three Kata have the peculiar movemen of beginning. The movement that indicates Heaven and Earth at the same time has a religious meaning. From the operation,it is guessed that Chan-Nan was parties concerned of "Taiping Rebellion" (1850) of the Christian who gets up in China. 

They are our distinctions of the 20th century now though we are persisting in the style of "××Ryu". Kata of Karate has very various roots. "××Ryu" is only a system of Kata that famous Sensei collected by chance. However, a certain great Sensei constructed the system choosing Kata by a clear plan and the principle, and adding his research. Chojun Miyagi and Gichin Funakoshi are the typical great men.
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