Our School

Reiwaryu Ryushinkan Karate-Do Renmei is an established organisation with roots that can find their way back hundreds of years. The name is unique to this school, below is a description of the parts that make up the name.

The name of our organisation in Japan is called: Zen Nippon Reiwaryu Ryushinkan Karate-Do Renmei

Zen Nippon All Japan
Karatedo Way of empty hand
Renmei Organization

This English branch is called: Reiwaryu Ryushinkan Karate-Do Renmei

The name Reiwaryu refers to the style, translated as “style of respect and harmony”

Rei Politeness, respect
Wa Harmony
Ryu Style, school

The name Ryushinkan also refers to the style, translated as the “Place of the flexible (or adaptable) mind”

Ryu Refers to the Japanese Willow tree (Yanagi), which will bend in the wind rather than standing rigid and perhaps snapping under the strain.
Shin Refers to heart/mind (Kokoro = heart)
Kan Training place, gymnasium

(Note: The sound “Ryu” in Japanese also refers to the Dragon, which appears on both the license and on the certificate, but it is a different written character.)

The “do” in karate-Do implies that the form of marital art is concerned primarily with personal development. This is as opposed to the earlier fighting “Jutsu” arts from which the “Do” arts developed. The priorities of a do art are 1 morals, 2 discipline, 3 aesthetics/fighting equally ranked, whereas the priorities of a jutsu art are 1 combat, 2 discipline, 3 morals. In Japan the samurai fighting arts were changed into “Do” arts (e.g. ju jutsu to judo). In okinawa, tode jutsu was introduced into the school curriculum around the turn of the 20th century to aid the students personal development and later renamed karatedo. The more dangerous techniques were removed for safety and to enable competition, and it was taught using militaristic education techniques prevalent at the time which we see to day as training in ranks, training by numbers, the ranking system, and the development of group mentality. However, both ways (Do and Jutsu) eventually lead to the same place.

The school badge

The badge consists of a spiral around a fist with the school name in calligraphy. The spiral is analogous to the Ryu mentioned above, the Japanese willow, and in kumite (free fighting) one should train not to keep stepping back but to move in a circle. (Assume you are standing with your back to a cliff, you cannot step back, so you move circularly to the side avoiding the main thrust of the attack.) The fist in the centre of the badge refers to the counter attack after the evasion.