Westchester Martial Arts Training Center

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About Shorin Ryu

KARATE, the weaponless techniques of fighting and self-defense had its early beginnings in Okinawa. Okinawa being the main land of the Ryuku Islands chain, stretching from Japan to Taiwan, (about 300 miles from mainland Japan). There is evidence of Karate recorded in Okinawan history dating back more than 1000 years. However, the ancient history of Karate in different locations such as Naha, Tomari and Shuri later led to the different styles. Our style of Karate, Shima Ha Shorin Ryu, was developed from the ancient Tomari-Te and Shuri-Te. Goju-Ryu evolved from what was known as Naha-Te, the founder being Chojin Miyagi. Some of the great masters to be noted, who were the founders of Shuri-Te and Tomari-Te are:

  • Anko ITOSU
  • Chotoku CHIBANA
  • Kentsu YABU
  • Shinpan SHIROMA
  • Chomo HANASHIRO
  • Kenwa MABUNI
  • Anbun TOKUDA
  • Moden YABIKU
  • Juhatsu KYODA
  • Gichin FUNAKOSHI

Their Teachings came from the great masters Sokon MATSUMURA and Kosaku MATSUMORA.

With modernization of the world and Karate, Shorin-Ryu further developed into three basic but similar styles, that being Kobayashi-Ryu, Sukanahashi-Ryu and Matsubayashi­Ryu. Our Style is a combination of techniques from some of today's leading expert of Shuri-Te and Tomari-Te; Shoshin Nagamine, Seigi Nakamura, Maso Shima, Chokei Kishaba and Toshihiro Oshiro.

Sensei Baxter's foundation comes from Matsubayshi-Ryu, as taught by the founder Master Nagamine and his first teacher Shihan Zenko Heshiki. However, many of the Katas, Bunkai and bio-mechanics of his techniques comes from his training with Hanshi Toshihiro Oshiro. Hanshi Oshiro has been studying the martial arts for over forty five years and is one of the founders of the Ryukyu Bujutsu Kenkyu Doyukai and our style Shima-Ha Shorin-Ryu.

Karate being a martial art, involved the practice of Kata (forms) Kumite (sparring), Makiwara training, (punch development) and Kobujutsu (ancient weapon art). Kobujutsu was developed during the feudal era when Okinawa was occupied by the Shimazu Clan. Some of the weapons developed were actually ancient farm tools but are still studied and practiced today. The Bo, Nunchaku, Kama, Sai and Tunfa are some of the weapons that we study. The Long history of the practice of Karate has gone hand in hand with the practice of the Bo (most popular of the weapons). However, the term six-foot staff is not correct in name because the length of the bo should fit the height of the practitioner. The same being true, with all weapons.

Our style of Kobudo is known as Yamani-Chinen-Ryu, which was founded by Masami Chinen. Bo training is the most emphasized instruction in the Yamanni-Ryu system. Shihan Oshiro is a student of the Chogi Kishaba, who studied with Masami Chinen.



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