The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jul 01, 2017 4:13 am

(Fujimoto)
When I was in Fuzhou doing research with the local martial arts association, I tried to do as much as possible to investigate Shushiwa sensei and collect information on origins of the style, but I sometimes thought someone overseas might know a different approach to shedding light on Kanbun’s life story.

What has always been most important to me as a martial artist is to faithfully pass on the techniques, spirit, and history left by those who came before us.

From this perspective, I sincerely hope to build stronger relationships with Uechi-ryu people living overseas.

I fully believe that what is most important for any style is to keep on growing into the future, but to do so with a firm grasp of your origins and where you are now.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jul 01, 2017 4:14 am

(Robert)
Were you able to find out what kind of practice sessions were held during the Wakayama years, or what the atmosphere of the dojo was like?


(Fujimoto)
Yes - one of his students from Wakayama said they did Sanchin, kotei kitae, Seisan, sparring, and basic conditioning, and he also told me about Kanbun sensei’s favorite sparring techniques.

Most of the time Kanbun sensei had an easy going disposition, but when practice started, his expression would become almost fearful and nobody wanted to go near him.

On the other hand, if someone could not pay the entire monthly fee for lessons, he was generous enough to let that student participate in class, and the dojo was said to have been very popular.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jul 01, 2017 4:59 am

Kanbun's breathing

I chuckle a bit on this book information, given the breathing wars on this forum in years past.

We have heard about a billion arguments on how 'Uechi Ryu -breathes' in contrast to my simple belief that the best way to breathe, is to breathe out at the same time one strikes, and breathe in on the drawing back for the strike.

Now we all know what 'Uechi breathing' is supposed to be like...

You hold your breath as you strike holding your tongue against the roof of your mouth, to achieve structure _and then at the end of the strike you perform a tssst sound, presumably to let the teacher know you are breathing and not holding your breath in...or some such similar explanation...to the point that if you breathe any different than the above...you are nothing but an heretic...pretty funny word from way back.

And that this of course was the way Kanbun Uechi taught his students how to breathe...are you with me so far?

Now I call your attention to pages 135 and 136 of the book:

Last paragraph page 135
How did he teach 'proper breathing'?


First paragraph page 136...SK
He would have us breathing out at the same time as a spear thrust and breathing in when drawing back for a strike.


Your tongue against the roof of your mouth, to achieve 'structure' and hiss out the sound, is of course correct because as I have written before in our 'arguments' the forcing out of the air in the hiss results in an immediate replenish of air...this also presented in the studies made by Scott Sonnon in Russia....it is where you put the tsst, the outbreath...that is important.

So the outbreath seemed to have been taught by Kanbun as the strike landed on target and not after.

So who is the SK?

In the book we learn that Fujimoto had been told by Ryuko Tomoyose that there was a man living on Lejima who had known Kanbun well...and he had made up his mind to speak to him.

It was 2009 and Fujimoto was able to interview the then 80 year old SK who had been one of Kanbun's students in Lejima's small Kanbun's dojo...

It turned out that SK's older brother, who happens to have the same initials as S.K., was one of Kanbun's students in Wakayama and was still alive and well on Lejima.

SK took Fujimoto to his brother's house, which it turned out was the residence with the dojo where Kanbun had lived and taught in his twilight years.

SK's brother was well into his eighties but he stood straight and exuded an air of vigor.

Fujimoto was able to determine that there were just four individuals still alive
who had directly studied Pangai -noon karate from Kanbun ....Ryuko Tomoyose on Okinawa_ S.K. and his brother on Leijima...and a K. living in Tokushima Prefecture on Shinkoku.

This is one hell of a book to get your hands on.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:03 am

Author
what was forearm conditioning like ?


[SK]
Forearm conditioning was the most important part practice, and I remember some would be in tears until they got used to it.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:08 am

There are stories where Kanbun's dojo in China where he had to 'turn away' the 'dojo busters' ...'many times'...

SK
we trained everyday from 8 to 11 PM. He said if you didn't train every day. you would never really get strong.


Great book.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Stryke » Sat Jul 01, 2017 9:13 pm

Thanks for posting Van

Refreshing , and while it will now always boil back down to we dont really know , more information is always a blessing.


A more academic and balanced view of change , and open mindedness , especially in reference to wakayama can only open eyes to the styles evolution imho.

The mocking of the group by some because of interpretation was shocking to me regardless of belief of correctness or authenticity , were in fact its clearly chinese flavour and variation may even be the norm and foundation of this great art.

Refreshing more still coming through , and the message that accompanys it , respect and understanding
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jul 02, 2017 2:53 am

Good observation Marcus...in my view there is always the same answer:
'The Human condition' ...we have all been through some of it...one way or the other...

I am sure that even the book by Fujimoto will have detractors because it will 'threaten' some groups with the new found knowledge.

And surely Fujimoto will just ignore all of it.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jul 02, 2017 3:10 am

[author]
do you remember what the sanchin conditioning was like?


[K]
That's not something you forget. If you could do sanchin holding a bucket full of gravel [18 liters] in each hand, you were considered to have crossed the milestone and made it to first degree black belt


Reading the book I get a sense of the extreme training demands and constant daily training three hours every workout.

One of my students, did train in Tokyo Fujimoto dojo while in Japan teaching English.

When he returned to Boston he was twice as well conditioned as when he left.

He indicated that Fujimoto had a severe conditioning regime in his dojo, and the point he was getting across in his classes was that Uechi Ryu was mostly internal growth.

Interesting to note here is that Fujimoto personally invited our Bob Campbell to teach at his dojo as a personal guest...because of Bob's exceptional fighting concepts.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:23 pm

Kanbun's breathing method

From the 'book'...pg 143_ first paragraph

"Author" can you describe breathing techniques as well as how you used circular blocks?

"K" We would exhale at the same time as making a spear hand thrust...
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:25 pm

page 159

There were other prominent Uechi-Ryu figures training at the academy in Nodake who were students of Kanbun Uechi from the Wakayama days including Seiyu Shinjio and Seiko Toyama.
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:26 pm

pg 160

There were some notable differences in the techniques used by Kanbun and Kanei. As I found out by conducting research for his book, Kanbun's style has been most faithfully passed down by the Ryuseikan Tomoyori dojo in Wakayama.

Some of the more noticeable differences include the axis of the circle block , the Sanchin stance, footwork, use of the hands in ready position, kicks, and a few other techniques, but why are there any differences at all?[we can surmise the techniques probably evolved gradually from the later part of the 1950s...



It is interesting to note that the improvements were related to interaction with other styles and the involvement of US military personnel and finally as karate evolved into sport and fitness.

You have to get this book...
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:33 pm

pg 115

On a different occasion Furugen asked Kanei if it was possible to break a brick with a nukite[spear hand]. Kanei simply removed one of his sandals , placed a brick on the wooden underside and then crushed the brick with a savage nukite that sent shards flying through a nearby window
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:19 pm

Fujimoto was able to determine that there were just four individuals still alive
who had directly studied Pangai -noon karate from Kanbun ....Ryuko Tomoyose on Okinawa_ S.K. and his brother on Leijima...and a K. living in Tokushima Prefecture on Shinkoku.


So the 'K' persons were interviewed...and reported, in particular, the way kanbun taught how to breathe.

Of course now the question is who changed to current standards[no breathing out with the strike] when was it changed, why was it changed and what studies were made to support the change?

And why would it be changed from the original way of Kanbun...what was perceived to be wrong with the way Kanbun learned in China and taught it?


Just sayin....
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Wed Jul 05, 2017 5:07 am

Now I call your attention to pages 135 and 136 of the book:

Last paragraph page 135

How did he teach 'proper breathing'?

First paragraph page 136...SK

He would have us breathing out at the same time as a spear thrust and breathing in when drawing back for a strike.


The thing is...even assuming students the world over want to change over from the current method to the one as taught by Kanbun as learned in China, will have a great difficulty adjusting to it...and they may even argue that SK and his brother, Kanbun's still living students from the Wakayama days...are either wrong or lying.

One sort of wonders why if Kanbun taught breathing that way...not one present day organization learned of it....

Except Gushi sensei R.I.P. who was from the original pangainoon...
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Re: The Untold Story Of Kanbun Uechi

Postby Van Canna » Thu Jul 06, 2017 4:01 am

Most of the time Kanbun sensei had an easy going disposition, but when practice started, his expression would become almost fearful and nobody wanted to go near him.


Interesting.
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