Goju-kai Karate-do is a mixture of traditional martial arts in Okinawa and traditional martial arts, mainly Chinese Nanpa Kenjutsu in Fuchien province, China.
During the Ryukyu age, peasants couldn’t have any arms because of the government’s power policy. These peasants, who developed the martial arts called Te, fought with bare feet and bare hands. This martial arts was the beginning of Karate, and later, it was called To-de.
In the process of spreading over Okinawa, Naha-te, Shuri-te, and other Styles’ origins were established. Goju-kai, which originated from Naha-te, was established by Chojun Miyagi Sensei who was a disciple of Kanryo Higaonna Sensei, the master of Naha-te. At the age of 16, Chojun Miyagi went to China and studied Karate under many renowned Karate masters. He also studied about theory and completed special breathing way called “Kisoku no Donto”.
Goju-ryu is named after a line from some old Chinese literature named “Bubishi”. Chojun Miyagi improved the old training ways and established a rational program including warming-up exercises, Kihon-kata, and Kaishu-kata, assistant exercises and so on. He thought character building was important so he left many of his words.
In the year 1937, Dainippon Butoku-kai awarded him the title, “Karate-do Kyoshi-go”. Karate-do received a good reputation and this moment was a big step towards spreading Karate all over the Japan.
According to Goju-kai’s spirit, all existence consists of Go, or hardness, which becomes positive and Ju, or softness which becomes negative. During a fight, Go becomes one’s offence and Ju becomes one’s defense for protecting our safety. Mixing Go and Ju leads to a tranquil mental state to prevent fighting.