Kyokushin Karate is a hard style of karate, characterized by its realistic full-contact style of fighting, it’s emphasis on graceful power in technique and it’s use of “tameshiwari” in the development of spirit and character.
This style of karate was developed during the 1930′s, 40′s and 50′s by the founder, Sosai Masutatsu Oyama, 10th Dan. Kyokushinkaikan Karate is administrered by the International Karate Organization-Kyokushinkaikan. The Kyokushinkaikan is one of the largest karate organizations in the world with over ten million members worldwide, with it’s head-quarters in Ikebukuro, Tokyo, Japan.
Currently, the IKO is directed by “Kancho” Shokei Matsui.
Sosai Oyama, 10th Dan, is the founder of Kyokushin Karate and was born in 1923. He started training at Chinese Kempo at the age of nine. When he was 15 years old, he started training in karate under Genchin Funakoshi.
Mas. Oyama trained hard under various teachers and made great progress, becoming a 4th Dan at the age of 22. Two years later, in 1947, he won the All Japan Karate Championship.
In 1948, Mas. Oyama decided to undergo the rigors of training alone in the mountains. This he did on Mt. Kiyosumi in the Chiba Prefecture, where he stayed for 18 months, training daily to strenghthen his body and spirit.
It was in 1950, after returning from the mountains, that Mas. Oyama first started matching his strength against that of a bull. He fought a total of 52 bulls, killing three and breaking the horns off of 40.
In 1954, Mas. Oyama made his first of many visits to North America where he held numerous demonstrations and participated in many fights against boxers and wrestlers. He won all fights he participated in.
In 1954, he opened his first dojo in Tokyo. This dojo was the beginning of the KYOKUSHINKAIKAN. In 1964, the Tokyo Honbu was officially opened and the International Karate Organization-Kyokushinkaikan (I.K.O.K.) was established. Kyokushin Karate today is one of the largest and most famous of all karate styles.
The first Canadian dojo opened in 1966.
Kyokushin is the name of the style of karate which we teach. It was founded by Mas. Oyama.
KYOKU mans “The ultimate”, SHIN means “truth” or “reality”, and KAI means “meet, join associate”.
The KANKU, which is the symbol of Kyokushin Karate originates from the Kanku Kata. In this kata, the hands are raised into the sky with the thumbs and the index fingers touching, thereby forming the symbol. The fingers are represented by the points and imply ultimate or peaks. The wrists are represented by the wide sections and imply power. The centre represents infinity, implying depth. The cicle enclosing the Kanku represents continuity and circular motion.