The Source of Shotokan Karate





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Uploaded on Mar 8, 2009

PLEASE NOTE: The picture of Enoeda Sensei @ 4:00 is from the book "Keinosuke Enoeda - Tiger of Shotokan Karate" by Mr. Rod Butler, who has kindly granted permission for this photograph to be used in this video.

This book can be purchased at:

Visit http://www.legendtv.co.uk
for excellent dvds on shotokan karate-do

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Japan Karate Association

The JKA was founded in May, 1949. By 1955, the first headquarters dojo had been built at Yotsuya in Tokyo, and the first JKA Chairman had been appointed: Saigo Kichinosuke, member of the upper house of the Japanese Diet and grandson of Saigo Takamori, one of the greatest heroes of Meiji Japan. In 1956, the JKA set up the first-ever karate specialist instructor intern (kenshusei) training program at the headquarters dojo, and accepted its first round of trainees. This was the start of the finest karate instructor training program ever created, a program never matched or even approached by any other karate organisation. It is through this program that the JKA has built up its unique cadre of distinguished karate instructors, all full-time salaried professionals, whose numbers are consistently maintained at roughly twenty individuals.

On April 10, 1957, the JKA became a legal entity when Japans Ministry of Education (now Ministry of Education, Science, Sports, and Culture) officially recognized the JKA as an association of members for the promotion of karate and the spread and enrichment of actual karate practice. Twelve years later, another karate organisation was also given legal status, based not on membership but on contribution by an individual foundation, mainly for the purpose of arranging karate matches.

Roughly two weeks after official status was granted, Supreme Master Funakoshi passed away at the age of 89. After almost a decade of milestones, it was the end of an era. But the real growth of karate was yet to come.

May 1949 JKA formed under Supreme Master Funakoshi Gichin

Mar 20, 1955 First JKA headquarters dojo established at Yotsuya

Mar 22, 1955 Saigo Kichinosuke becomes first JKA Chairman

Apr 1, 1956 First ever karate specialist instructor training program established at headquarters dojo

Apr 10, 1957 JKA officially recognized by Japanese government; becomes legal entity

Apr 26, 1957 Supreme Master Funakoshi passes away (age 89)

The above covers the early years of the JKA (1949 - 1957)

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