“Shoto”, meaning "pine-
Karate was originally written as "Chinese hand". In 1935 masters from the various styles of Okinawan Karate changed it to the Japanese meaning of "empty hand "
Gichin Funakoshi (10th November 1868 -
Funakoshi was born in Okinawa in 1868. As a boy, he was trained by two famous masters of that time. Each trained him in a different Okinawan martial art. From Yasutsune Azato he learned Shuri-
Masatoshi Nakayama (13th April 1913 -
Nakayama was born on Honshu Island, Japan in 1913. He began learning Karate under Gichin Funakoshi in 1932. In May 1949, Nakayama and other colleagues helped establish the Japan Karate Association (JKA). Funakoshi was the formal head of the organisation, with Nakayama appointed as chief instructor. Masatoshi Nakayama was a 9th Dan while alive and was posthumously awarded 10th Dan after his death.
Taiji Kase (9th February 1929 -
Kase was born in Chiba, Japan in 1929. In 1944, at the age of 15, Kase attained the rank of 2nd Dan black belt in Judo. That same year, he started karate under Gichin Funakoshi. He would later become chief instructor for the European branch of the JKA. One of his duties in the JKA was to train instructors in kumite (sparring), and amongst his students was Keinosuke Enoeda. Taiji Kase held the rank of 9th Dan.
Hirokazu Kanazawa (3rd May 1931 -
Kanazawa was born on Honshu Island, Japan in 1931. In his school years, he trained in Judo and rose to the rank of 2nd Dan. He began training in Karate under the then-
Keinosuke Enoeda (4th July 1935 -
Enoeda was born on the island of Kyushu, Japan in 1935. By the age of 16, Enoeda had reached the rank of 2nd Dan in Judo. After graduating from university, Enoeda studied at the Japan Karate Association (JKA) Honbu headquarters in Tokyo under Masatoshi Nakayama, the JKA's chief instructor, and Kumite under the direction of Taiji Kase. On 20th April 1965, following the JKA's policy of sending instructors abroad to introduce karate to the rest of the world, Enoeda travelled to England with JKA instructors Shirai, Kanazawa, and Kase. In 1985, Enoeda was ranked 8th Dan. Shortly after his death, the JKA awarded him the rank of 9th Dan.
Pauline was born on the 8th of January 1945 in Middlesborough. She began her martial arts training in Judo aged 12, at the Middlesbrough Judo Club, where she reached the rank of brown belt. Pauline started Karate at the BKF's (British Karate Federation) Middlesbrough dojo in 1962, under instructors Fred Kidd and Walter Seaton. After moving to London in 1964, at the age of 19, Pauline resumed her Karate training and attended Vernon Bell's dojo. In 1967 Pauline made history, becoming the first woman in Britain to be awarded the grade of 1st Dan by Hirokazu Kanazawa and the JKA. After Kanazawa left the UK for Germany, Pauline continued her Karate education under Keinosuke Enoeda. Pauline Laville-
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