Ryukyukan Okinawan Karate

Ryukyukan Okinawan Karate

Ryukyukan Federation promotes the study and practice of the original Shorinryu Karate, as practiced by its original masters Itosu, Kyan, and Chibana. Ryukyukan members are committed to the the study of Ryukyuan culture as a means to deeper understanding and greater enjoyment of Okinawan karate and kobudo training.

Koei Nohara is 9th dan, Hanshi, and President of the federation. All Ryukyukan branches adhere to the teachings and guidance of Nohara Hanshi. Nohara Hanshi’s karate lineage comes from his two teachers, both direct students of the founders of Shorinryu Karate. Nohara Hanshi’s father, Kaoru Nohara, was a direct student of Chotoku Kyan. Nohara Hanshi practiced Shorinryu Karate under his father until his early teenage years. Nohara Hanshi then moved to the Shorinkan organization, and continued to studied Shorinryu Karate under Shugoro Nakazato, Hanshi (a direct student of Chosin Chibana) until the age of 43. Nohara Hanshi also participated in full contact karate events in Okinawa, testing his skills against other Okinawan karate fighters. Nohara Hanshi worked as an administrator for the Ryukyu Prefectural government until he retired in 2008. Nohara Hanshi was chief karate instructor at the Prefectural Police Headquarters in Urasoe, Okinawa. He was one of the original planners of Budokan in Naha, the martial arts hall and center for indoor sports for Okinawa. Nohara Hanshi studies the cultural history of the Ryukyus, including dance, music, folk tales, and martial arts. He holds a masters degree in Cultural Anthropology, and is currently enrolled in the Ph.D. program at Waseda University. Nohara Hanshi is author of a book detailing the cultural heritage of Okinawan Karate: The Transformation of Tiy of Okinawa Traditional Karate.

In 1992, Nohara Hanshi opened the first All Ryukyu’s Full Contact Karate Kobudo Tournament in Okinawa, with the help of his friend and full contact karate champion, Koichi Nakazone. Nohara Hanshi accepted the position as the association’s first president. The same year, Nohara Hanshi began the Ryukyukan Shorinryu Karate Kobudo Federation.

Sensei Coulter Chief Instructor of Dento Kobudo Kai has trained under Hanshi Nohara over a number of years. This has given him an insight to the mother-style Shorin Ryu Okinawan Karate that most mainland Japanese styles including Wado-Ryu base their kata upon. Sensei Coulter and other members of Dento Kobudo Kai have also trained in Okinawa for both Ryukyukan Shorin Ryu Karate and Okinawan kobudo weapons.

Sensei Coulter has also attended the All Ryukyu’s Full Contact Karate Tournament as an international official and judge.