Wednesday 15th of August 2018

Soke with Kancho AhiharaTSG Ashihara International Karate is the system that was originally developed by Kancho Hideyuki Ashihara. In 1987 Soke Cook visited Kancho Ashihara in Japan, because he had heard that Kancho Ashihara had started to break with the traditional way of teaching Karate in Japan, and this seemed like it might be an interesting path to follow.

On his return from Japan, he started promoting the Ashihara Style in Europe. Although he thought that Ashihara Karate was a step in the right direction, he felt that there was still room for a lot of improvement, so he continued to develop the system, adding fighting combinations for every grade and developing the Kata so that they could always be practised with a partner (Uke).

This variation of the system was renamed Ashihara International Karate. Soke Cook’s path from a traditional Karate style, Kyokushin Karate, to a less traditional style, Ashihara Karate, to a more modern style, Ashihara International, has one thing in common - application (Bunkai).

When he first came into contact with Soke Ruiz, 10th Dan, in the USA in 1982 one of the things that impressed him most was Soke Ruiz’s knowledge of Kata Bunkai. Having trained Kyokushin Karate where Bunkai of Kata was not a well developed concept, he was impressed by the ability of Soke Ruiz to go back to the roots of the Kyokushin Kata and demonstrate the original Bunkai of the Kata.

Therefore when Soke Cook developed the Ashihara International Karate from the Japanese Ashihara Karate, he was determined that all the techniques of every Kata should be performed with a training partner (Uke). This made the Bunkai automatic because the students learnt the Kata in the Bunkai form and this is thanks to the influence of Soke Ruiz


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David C. Cook, All rights reserved.