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Karate-Do: My Way of Life Paperback – 29 Mar 2013
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About the Author
GICHIN FUNAKOSHI is world famous as one of Karate's great masters. Born in Shuri, Okinawa Prefecture, in 1868, he studied Karate-do from childhood and organized the first public demonstrations.
He was trained in the Confucian classics and was a schoolteacher early in life. After training for decades under the foremost masters in Okinawa he was elected president of the Okinawa Association for the Spirit of Martial Arts.
He was chosen to demonstrate Karate at the First National Athletic Exhibition in Tokyo in 1922, which led to the introduction of the ancient martial art to the rest of Japan and subsequently to the rest of the world. Among his writings are Karate-do Nyumon: The Master Introductory Text, Karate-doKyohan: The Master Text, and Karate Jutsu: The Original Teachings of Gichin Funakoshi.
Master Gichin Funakoshi died in April 1957.
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On studying closely Karate-do: My Way of Life by Gichin Funakoshi we learn that Karate has changed so much since its introduction to Japan, that if our great projanitors were to see it practiced today it would be unrecognisable to them as Karate. This superb book gives us a unique snapshot at the old masters: Sokon Matsumura, Itosu and Azato. These truly hard man practised karate as a close quarter combat system designed specifically to protect their king. Kata was not a meaningless succession of movements for physical exercise or performance but rather each kata was a recording of a complete and utterly devastating fighting system. Moreover we discover that Gichin Funakoshi was adamantly against the stylisation of the art and was dismayed at his Karate being named Shotokan!
Karate Do My Way of Life is a superb book written by a genius of the art.Okay, it's not Orange Prize book award writing but we're Karateka and every karateka should read it and enjoy it.... NO! STUDY IT AND LEARN from it for what it is. It gives us all the clues on how we should be teaching this life-changing art and its not how the majority of schools do it today.
Overall a pleasant read but more importantly the key to how karate should be practiced is held within.
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