Sensei Steve started the club here in Manchester in 2004 after completing the instructor course in London under the guidance of Rod Martin Sensei. He has been practising and teaching karate for nearly 20 years, and oversees the growth and development of the club.
Steve travels to Japan regularly for further training and is graded to 4th Dan Goju Ryu in Japan. He is a member of the Japan Karate Federation (JKF) Goju kai. He continues to train under the instruction and stewardship of senior instructors of the Goju Ryu Seiwakai and the JKF Goju kai.
Gōjū-ryū has 12 core kata in its standard curriculum: gekisai (dai ichi & dai ni), saifa, seiyunchin, seisan, saipai, shisochin, sanseiru, kururunfa, sanchin, tensho, and suparenpai. Students in most schools are required to know all of these kata before reaching sandan.
Morio Higaonna sensei writes that “Karate begins and ends with kata. Kata is the essence and foundation of karate and it represents the accumulation of more than 1000 years of knowledge. Formed by numerous masters throughout the ages through dedicated training and research, the kata are like a map to guide us, and as such should never be changed or tampered with.”
Almost all of the kata have a corresponding bunkai oyo, a prearranged two-person fighting drill. These drills help the student to understand the applications of the kata, establish proper rhythm/flow, to practice constant attack/defense, and to safely practice dangerous moves on a partner.
There are many students of karate, all which can trace their origins back to the island of Okinawa, Japan. However, originally there existed only three styles, each of which was named after the city in which is evolved. These are: Tomari-te, Shuri-te and Naha-te. The Tomari-te and Shuri-te styles were unified to form one school known as Shorin Ryu while Naha-te remained to its true form and became known as Goju Ryu.
The Meaning of Goju Ryu
According to oriental philosophy, to achieve harmony and order in the world, everything must express a balanced nature. So there is night and day, fire and water and so on.
The founder of our style, Grandmaster Chojun Miyagi chose the name Goju Ryu based on precepts from the Chinese martial arts. Go means hard or resilient; Ju means soft or yielding. Therefore Goju Ryu translates as the hard-soft school. This refers specifically to both the technical characteristics of our style and to its underlying philosophy.
The Five Precepts
We are proud to study the way of Goju
We are courteous in manners
We strive to develop courage and fighting spirit (humble yet strong)
We cultivate fellowship and understanding (the spirit of Cooperation)
We respect the ideals of loyalty and honor, traditional from olden times