Early History

The ancient martial arts of the Ryukyu Islands consist of Toshu-jutsu, the way of the empty hand and Emono-jutsu, the way of weapons. The former is called Karate and the latter, Ryukyu Kobujutsu.

Ryukyu Kobujutsu appeared in history approximately 700 years ago. It is said that it was the use of weapons in the periods of heroes holding grand. Most Kata of Weapons remaining now are footprints of old masters approximately 200-400 years ago. With the prosperity of Kobujutsu many grand masters appeared in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. As time went on however, the lack of instructors and students to carry on the tradition caused the decay of Ryukyu Kobujutsu, at one time it faced the prospect of dying out all together.

In the Taisho era some masters who were deeply worried about the situation made great efforts to restore and promote Ryukyu Kobujutsu. One practitioner who stands out in history is the late Grand Master Shinken Taira. He was a disciple of Yabiku Moden Sensei and compiled and authenticated 42 Weapons kata, spread across 8 weapons.

This knowledge of the kata was taught to and passed onto the late master Motokatsu Inoue who was the highest direct disciple of Shinken Taira.

Inoue Hanshi had one son who inherited this knowledge, Kisho Inoue sensei. He is now Chief Instructor and President of Ryukyu Kobujutsu Hozon Shinko Kai, to which the RKAGB is affiliated.

Grandmaster Shinken Taira who compiled and authenticated the 42 weapons kata, still taught today in the Ryukyu Kobujutsu fighting system.