History of Kyokushin

Kyokushin is an eclectic style of martial arts created by Masutatsu Oyama (more commonly known as Mas Oyama). The style is known for it’s disciplined and rigorous training.

Sosai Mas. Oyama officially founded Kyokushinkai in 1964. By the time of his death 30 years later in 1994, he had built it into a world-wide organization with over 12 million practitioners. There have been various splits in the organization over the years since his passing, but there are still many of his direct students who remain and continue to pass on his teachings today. Osu!!!

An ancient legend states that Bodhidharma, a Buddhist monk from India, traveled to China around the 5th century CE. After a time at the court of Emperor Wu he left and eventually arrived at the Shaolin Monastery. He found the monks in terrible physical condition. He taught them exercises to strengthen the monks physically and meditation to help them spiritually. These exercises were called “18 hands of Luohan Quan” and are considered the root of Chinese martial arts. Mas. Oyama recalled his first teacher later in life. A man he always referred to as “Mr. Yi” who worked on his sister’s farm. He started training with him at 9 years old and the style he taught was “18 hands”.

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