My Sensei says: <<There's no needs to create amazing things for others ... those who want to know the truth will know how to look and if they have kokoro they will find it!>>
the famous ghost style of Okinawa
Kojoryu is the encoded karate system probably the oldest existing one, it has influenced several other traditional Okinawan karate lines. With ancient roots of at least 300 years in Chinese chuan-fa (old Shinzanryu), according to the still active masters, it was passed down secretly until the beginning of the 70s through members of the famous clan Kojo (becoming Kojoryu).
Although Kojoryu is an ancient style of karate, it is considered by the few masters who really studied it as a fighting system in its own right, which goes beyond karate itself, so much its uniqueness and technical completeness.
Kojoryu is a very combative martial art and includes empty hand kata and kobujutsu kata. If considered as a system it is very complex containing many kata derived from the ancient Chinese chuan-fa and the Okinawan methods after known as Shuri-te, Tomari-te and Naha-te. It is also considered as Kuninda-di, since the Kojo family lived in the Kume village.
While as a proper karate style it's said to be composed of 6 kata that have been transmitted within the only family clan and are unique in the world of karate, as no other karate style has any similarity. These kata are: Tenkan, Kukan, Chikan, Hakko, Hakuryu and Hakkaku. The first 3 kata include 12 kamae-te typical of the style that represent the twelve animals of the zodiac and have particular kyusho applications.
The rich repertoire of atemi-waza, kansetsu-waza, shime-waza and nage-waza, comes from the combination of various techniques roots, in fact it is a fusion of experiences from multiple methods such as Xingyi-quan, Luohan-quan, Hakutsuru-ken, Uchina-di and also Japanese Jujutsu.
Kojoryu is a style that is still practiced and taught according to the principles of an old family karate, it aims exclusively to the study of the most direct and effective self-defense.
CAI ZHAO GONG (1656 - 1737) founder of family system
had roots in the 36 Chinese families that lived at Kume village (Kuninda). He was a Wekata of the Ryukyu kingdom, warrior and officier of almanacs. He learned martial arts at the royal palace of the 3rd Kang-Xi Empiror in Beijin (reign 1661 - 1722); after he formulated the first draft of the family tudi system
KOJO SHINUNJO (c. 1780) 1st generation
was a pechin of the Ryukyu kingdom. He was nephew of Kojo Wekata and he learned his tudi system starting to structure the family system; Okinawan people called his system as Kojo-no-Kuninda-Di
KOJO SHOI (1816 - 1906) 2nd generation
learned empty hand, stick and knife techniques and kata in Fujian, especially White Crane Fist style and taught them to the family members enriching the family system, he introduced the 3 high-level kata (Hakko, Hakuryu, Hakkaku)
KOJO TAITEI (1837 - 1917) & ISEI (1832 - 1891) 3rd generation
under Waishinzan and Iwah in China, introducing many Hakutsuru-ken kata (as Babulian) and started to call the family system as Shinzanryu; Taitei also introduced the secret Bubishi to Okinawa
KOJO KAHO (1849 - 1925) 4th generation
created the family jo-jutsu kata plus the 3 middle-level empty hand kata (Tenkan, Kukan, Chikan) and started to fuse the family Shinzanryu with the Okinawa-Te
KOJO SAIKYO (1873 - 1941) & SHUREN (1883 - 1945) 5th generation
learned other ryu-ha under Okinawan masters and became experts in Okinawan sumo-jutsu and sai-jutsu, introducting them into the family system
KAFU KOJO (1910 - 1996) 6th generation
also known as Yoshitomi Kojo (1910 - 1996) was the last head master of the Kojoryu karate.
He learned the family system under his grandfather Kaho, his father Saikyo and his uncle Shuren. He learned Sekiguchiryu jujutsu, jukendo and he also was expert in Shorinryu, that learned under his friend Choshin Chibana and Chomo Hanashiro. Around 60s he decided to teach publicly his karate, so he opened his dojo called Shodokan; so he initially changed the name of the system from Shinzanryu 振山流 to Shinzanryu • Shorinryu, but in the '67 he changed the name finally into Kojoryu 湖城流. He accepted about ten of external members including Shingo Hayashi and Seiji Irimaji; his son Shigeru (1934 - 1993) would have been his heir but unfortunately he died prematurely.
SHINGO HAYASHI (1934) is the moral heir of Kojoryu as he was the last student of Kafu. He learned the family system when he worked in Okinawa as dentist starting around 1963. He studied also other martial arts as judo and kendo. He lives in Japan (mainland) and invited many times Kafu Kojo at his home to continue to learn karate. He received authorization by Kafu to open a school there as branch of the Kojo's Kobukan dojo, so Hayashi Sensei opened the Okinawa-den Kojoryu Karate Shodokai and started to teach publicly, but he never had interest in using karate to do business as well as his master, and being very busy with his job he closed the school after a few years. Now he has only 4 students in Japan and teaches to them every week; he currently teaches as Kojoryu the following kata: Naihanchi (sho, ni, san), Paisai (sho, dai), Chinto, Jion, Sesan, Kushanku, Tenkan, Kukan, Chikan, Hakko, Hakuryu and Hakkaku. He never wanted to enter in any organization and he wants to teach in the old way; he is known as kakuri bushi or "hidden warrior" thanks to his humble and gentle charcter, and unattractive to business and vantage.
ANGELO BONANNO (1978)
is currently the only Italian person to have studied under Yabiku Sensei and Hayashi Sensei
both original lines of the system, and he continues to deepen, going to Japan every year. On 2015 he was already authorized by Yabiku Sensei through an official letter to teach the system (see below) under the name of his own school Taigishin-kan™.
He now calls his school as Okinawa-den Koyamaryu™®
(from double nomenclature Kojoryu
™®), and he is devoted almost exclusively to following the teachings of Hayashi Sensei, in order to deepen the Kojoryu, and accepting his idea of not releasing ranks and titles in karate as it was in the past, so that the practice is guided only by the desire to constantly improve.