Like Share And Subscribe For More Great Videos Today we will discuss the real Mr Miyagi Everybody of a certain age remembers the character
Mr Miyagi from the hit 1980s movie The Karate Kid. However what many people do not realise is
the wise old karate teacher was in fact based on a real life master from Okinawa who founded
one of the most successful forms of the martial art, Goju Ryu karate. Blending Chinese Kung Fu with Okinawan Karate
Sensei Chojun Miyagi (1888 – 1953) began his training at an early age and when he turned
14, he was sent to study under the great master Kanryo Higaonna. While working in China, Higaonna had the opportunity
to study kung fu and blended his new knowledge with the style he himself had been taught
in his home town of Naha (later this style would become known as Naha-te). Though training was extremely hard, the young
Miyagi excelled and through great determination and a large amount of raw natural talent and
was able to progress in the art very quickly. After his teacher’s death in 1915, Miyagi
also went to China and though he did not intend to learn kung fu, what he saw there piqued
his interest so he began studying. He attended the Pakua Chan School that emphasised
the soft aspects of the martial arts. He was particularly interested in the internal
systems and breathing techniques they taught there that promoted inner peace and harmony
of the mind, body and spirit. He also studied at the School of Shaolin Chuan
which had a more external focus on training. The ‘hard’ aspect of the style he developed
incorporates open handed blocking with a circular motion along with strong punching and striking
techniques. The legs are also utilised effectively and
while high kicks are getting more popular today, Miyagi taught that kicks should be
kept low in order to maximise their effectiveness while minimising the risk (as high kicks are
less likely to hit the target and may result in a loss of balance). Goju Ryu karate also incorporates the use
of many other types of technique including; Sweeps
Throws Joint locks
Grappling The Development of Goju Ryu Karate
In the early 20th century, Okinawan karate masters were in great demand in Japan which
appealed to Miyagi, so he went and began teaching classes at Kyoto University. However after a while he became homesick and
returned to Okinawa, taking some of his best students with him. One of Sensei Chonju Miyagi’s students who
did not follow him back to his homeland however was Gogen Yamaguchi, who instead stayed in
Japan and became a very successful teacher there. Known as The Cat because of his agility, cunning
and speed when fighting, he further developed the style by organizing it into the system
that is used all over the world today, forming the association known as Goju Kai. Miyagi spent the rest of his life developing
and teaching Goju Ryu karate while Yamaguchi did likewise in Japan. On his deathbed, the founder of the style
named Yamaguchi as his successor, before passing away on 8 October 1953 at the age of 65. Today, his legacy lives on and he is considered
a legend of martial arts history. His name will always be remembered through
the style he created which despite some modifications down the years, is still easily recognisable
as the karate of the real Mr Miyagi.

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