Sensei Keinosuke Enoeda 1935 - 2003

 

Keinosuke Enoeda was born July 4th 1935 in Fukuoka on the island of Kyushu in southern Japan. He had a tremendous fighting spirit and a dynamic teaching style. His fighting spirit earned him the nickname "Tora" (Tiger) Earlier in his life he practised martial arts in Judo and gained his 2nd degree black belt. At 17 years old he changed martial arts to karate after watching a demonstration by two members of the Takushoku University Karate Club in Tokyo, karate's gain Judo's loss.

Master Enoeda enrolled at the university renown for its strong martial arts, after 2 years he passed his 1st degree black belt grade. At 21 he was captain of the University karate club. During his university training he received instruction from  Master Gichin Funakoshi, the Okanawan who introduced karate to Japan. He graduated at the university  in 1957 with a degree in commerce.

Master Enoeda was invited to attend a 3 year special instructors course at JKA headquarters. He accepted, studied and trained hard on a daily basis under Masatoshi Nakayama, the chief instructor of the KJA and Hidetaka Nishiyama a leading senior.

Up till 1963  he had only taught locally at the Tokyo Art College and a military university but after that years championships he caught the eye of the Indonesian President Sukarno. He was so impressed with Enoeda skill that he made negotiations for his services. He and Master Nakayama spent 4 months in Indonesia teaching the presidents personal bodyguards and at the police and military establishments.

JKA policy was to send out its best instructors out from Japan to spread Shotokan Karate. So Master Enoeda sent on world wide travels culminating in him coming and settling in Great Britain as Shotokan Chief Instructor. Through his teaching he has produced some of our great Karateka and making Great Britain one of the strongest karate nations in the world.

Sadly in 2003 Master Enoeda died after a short illness, he is greatly missed. He left behind a great legacy to which all karateka owe him a great deal.

 

Personal Note: I passed my 1st Dan under Sensei Enoeda, it was a thrill and a honour to train under him. My certificate is signed by Master Masatoshi Nakayama (JKA chief instructor) and Master Enoeda (official examiner) made of rice paper from Japan, one of my prize possessions.

Master Gichin Funakoshi 1868 - 1957

 

Master Gichin Funakoshi is world famous as the founder of Shotokan Karate. He was born in Okinawain 1868 and studied Karate-do from childhood. Once said" The ultimate aim of karate lies not in victory, but in the perfection of the character of its participants". He is credited with introducing karate to mainland Japan in the early part of the 20th century.

In 1917, Funakoshi, at the request of the Japanese Ministry for Education travelled from Okinawa to Kyoto in Japan and gave the first display of T'ang. Original names for karate were: Tode (T'ang Hand) or Te (hand) in Okinawa. In Japan, Funakoshi changed the name from T'ang hand to karate (empty hand) about 1930. Now, the Japanese character"kara" symbolizes the essence of Budo (martial way, which is to defend oneself against an enemy with empty hands.

In 1921 Funakoshi demonstrated his system for the Crown Prince of Japan at Shuri castle. So impressive was this that Funakoshi was asked to appear at the first national athletics exhibition in Tokyo, he was then persuaded to stay on in mainland Japan. In 1924 he began teaching in schools and dojo's and founded the first University Karate Club at Keio University. By 1936 karate had began to spread and the first purpose built dojo was built called Shotokan (the hall of Shoto) a pen name of Funakosh. 

Funakoshi was a person who believed in the spiritual and mental development of his students. It is the focus on the spiritual aspects that turns karate, a mere martial arts into karate-do a Way. Not just focusing on the technical aspects, since true karate-do trains both mind and body.

 

Twenty Principals of Karate

  • Do not forget karate-do begins and ends in Rei.

  • There is no first strike in karate.

  • Karate stands on the side of justice.

  • First know yourself then know others.

  • Mentality over technique.

  • The mind must be set free.

  • Calamity springs from carelessness.

  • Karate goes beyond the dojo.

  • Karate is a lifelong pursuit.

  • Apply the way of karate to all things. Therein lies its beauty.

  • Karate is like boiling water, without heat, it returns to its tepid state.

  • Do not think of winning, think rather of not losing.

  • Make adjustments according to you opponent.

  • The outcome of battle depends on how one handles emptiness and fullness (weakness and strength).

  • Think of the opponents hands and feet as swords.

  • When you step beyond your own gate, you face a million enemies.

  • Kamae (ready stance) is for beginners: later, one stands in Shizentai (natural stance).

  • Perform Kata exactly: actual combat is another matter.

  • Do not forget the employment or withdrawal of power, the extension or contraction of the body, the swift or leisurely application of technique

  • Be constantly mindful, diligent and resourcefull in your time and pursuit of the Way.

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