History

Chojun (Tyajun) Miyagi

Chojun (Tyajun) Miyagi was born on April 25,1888. He began his Karate training Shuri-te and at the age of 14 was introduced to Kanryo Higaonna with whom he began his study of Naha-te. Like his teacher before him, because of his great talent and determination, he progressed rapidly. Chojun Miyagi became "uchi deshi" (private disciple) of Kanryo Higaonna. He stayed with his teacher for 14 years before his teacher's passing in 1915.

Chojun Miyagi, as successor to Naha-te, pushed himself to the limits of endurance in his desire to emulate his teacher's extraordinary skill. In 1915 he journeyed to the Fukien Province in China, where his teacher had studied martial arts nearly a half decade earlier, to further his research. This was one of three trips he made to China during his lifetime.

Chojun Miyagi worked hard to spread Goju-Ryu Karate throughout Okinawa, Japan, Asia and the Pacific and to earn Goju-Ryu a status equal to that of the highly respected Japanese martial arts. To achieve this he traveled frequently to mainland Japan where he was invited to teach at Kyoto University, Kansai University and Ritsumei Kan University. In 1933, Goju-Ryu Kara-te was the first Okinawan martial art to be registered at the Dai Nippon Butoku-Kai, the center for all martial arts in Japan.

Chojun Miyagi dedicated his whole life to Kara-te. He was responsible for structuring Goju-Ryu into a systemized discipline which could be taught to people in general. The system that he designed enabled Kara-te to be taught for the benefit of the young and old to reach large numbers of people all over the world. His teachings at his home remained strictly in adherence to the principles and traditions of his teacher, Kanryo Higaonna, and his teacher before him, Ryu Ryu Ko. Grandmaster Chojun Miyagi passed away in 1953.

Tutors and Influences

Sensei Akira Kawakami -- performing Kata Sanseiru in Oklahoma City Dojo.

Circa: 1968
Photo credit: Dick Strout

Reverend Sogen Sakiyama -- Buddhist Zen Priest.

Kata Sanchin - at the end. The Reverend was a participating student of Great Grand Master Chojun Miyagi and had learnt many Goju Katas prior the war.

Circa: Summer, 1971
Photo credit: Hick Ngow Lee

 

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