This week in history (28 Sep – 4 Oct)

28 September

On 28 September 1897, Shinkin Gima was born in Shuri, Okinawa. Growing up he studied Karate under both Yasutsune Itosu and Kentsu Yabu before attending university in Tokyo.

In 1922 he met and began training with Gichin Funakoshi. He was Funakoshi’s first black belt and would eventually reach the rank of 10th Dan.

On 28 September 1943, Shigeru  Takashina was born in Hiroshima, Japan.

Shigeru Takashina was a true stalwart of the Japan Karate Association (JKA). A graduate of the famed JKA Instructors Course, he was one of the first group of instructors to teach Shotokan Karate outside of Japan for the JKA. He helped established Shotokan Karate on the East Coast of the United States, particularly in the South Florida area.

On 28 September 1985, the Shoto Cup took place at the Budokan in Tokyo. Japanese competitors won every medal on offer. Minoru Kawada became Grand Champion after winning both the individual kata and kumite titles.

1 October

On 1 October 1969, the Japan Karate Federation (JKF) was established as an umbrella for various Karate styles. The new federation acted as the official governing body for Karate in Japan.

The founding members of the JKF included Kenei Mabuni and Manzo Iwata of Shito-ryu; Hironori Ohtsuka of Wado-ryu; Gogen Yamaguchi of Goju-ryu; and Masatoshi Nakayama of Shotokan.

On 1 October 2005, the Ichigeki Plaza opened in the Ebisu district of Tokyo, Japan. Ichigeki is an all-around health and fitness facility, offering Karate, kickboxing, and MMA training. This facility was the brainchild of Shokei Matsui.

2 October

On 2 October 1992, Andy Hug defeated Taiei Kin in the final of the Seidokaikan World Cup, held in the Osaka, Japan.

Hug switched from Kyokushin Karate to Seidokaikan Karate earlier in 1992. Seidokaikan is a full-contact style of Karate, created by Kazuyoshi Ishii, and is derived from Kyokushin Karate. With a switch of styles, Hug had changed from an amateur to professional fighter.

4 October

On 4 October 1924, Motokuni Sugiura, a former Chief Instructor of the JKA, was born in Aichi Prefecture, Japan.

Sugiura was promoted to 1st Dan by the age of 20. At university he had been taught be Gichin Funakoshi and his son Yoshitaka. After he graduated in 1944 he joined the Tsuchiura Navy Flying Corps, serving for a year.

After leaving the Navy he resumed his Karate training under Masatoshi Nakayama. By 1955 he had been promoted to 3rd Dan. He started working full-time for the JKA in their Guidance Division. In 1957 he was appointed Director of the JKA and was assigned to managing instructors at the JKA Hombu in Tokyo.

In 1991 he was appointed the second Chief Instructor of the JKA. The following year he was promoted to 9th Dan.

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