Karate is an Okinawan martial art. The term "karate" means "empty hand", or a martial art using no weapons. We teach "Goju-ryu" which translates into "hard/ soft" or "resilient/ yielding". Both in our karate and in life, we endeavor to strike a balance between these opposing forces.
The founder of Goju-ryu was Chojun Miyagi (1888-1953), whose picture is to the left. He became a disciple of Kanryo Higaonna (1853-1915), the founder of the Naha-te style, when he was fourteen. He endured harsh ascetic practices and in 1915 went to Fujian Province in China to perfect his skills in the martial arts. He also undertook a lot of research on noted Chinese warriors. As a result, he was able to take over and organize karate techniques and the principles of the martial arts that he had been taught. He consolidated modern karate-do, incorporating effective elements of both athletics and the martial arts in addition to the principles of reason and science(quoted from www.wonder-okinawa.jp, used with permission).
There were three original styles of karate: Tomari-te, Shuri-te and Naha-te. Goju-ryu was originally known as "Naha-te" because it was founded in Naha, Okinawa. The founder, Sensei Miyagi Chojun, developed Goju-ryu in the early 1900s.
For a more detailed explanation of the history of Okinawan karate, please visit our friends at the Okinawan Prefecture by clicking on their logo: