44 of 44 people found the following review helpful
Original Okinawa Karate & Kata Bible in English,
This review is from: The Essence of Okinawan Karate-Do (Shorin-Ryu) (Hardcover)Shoshin Nagamine's book is invaluable to anyone who studies Shorin-ryu Karate, or a school related to or derived from Shorin-ryu. Although Nagamine's volume was originally published in English in 1976, it still sets the standard for other books on the subject of Okinawan karate (I don't know of any English volume as thorough--and I own over 3,000 martial arts books). It is also the only English language Shorin-ryu manual to include complete demonstrations of ALL 18 kata of this style, all of which are demonstrated by Mr. Nagamine himself (photos, foot position & stepping diagrams, and narrative). They include: Fugyu Kata I & II, Pinan 1 through 5, Naihanchi 1-3, Ananku, Wankan, Rohai, Wanshu, Passai, Gojushiho, Chinto, and Kusanku. Practitioners of styles such as Shotokan and Tang Soo Do will enjoy comparing these older versions of the forms with those they practice today. This is one of the few books on Karate which could benefit a practitioner at either the basic OR advanced levels, due to the amount and depth of information included within.
Another attractive feature of this book is the excellent autobiography which Mr. Nagamine includes. He writes about personal aspects of his life, his interest in karate and other martial arts (he was also a skilled judoka), and includes a subsection on each of his teachers describing his experience and what he learned. He describes training with his first teacher, Ankichi Arakaki, and then the famed Chotoku Kyan, and the kempo master Choki Motobu. Nagamine offers his personal thoughts on karate training, including a series of precepts which have guided his own studies. The section on basic techniques (preceeding the lengthy section on kata) shows exactly how each movement is to be performed, and includes detailed photographs from the start of the technique to its finish. There are also sections on Kumite (showing 7 sequences and also brief information on breaking objects and makiwara training) and Kobudo (weapons such as sai, bo, nunchaku, etc.).
Concerning Shishin Nagamine, the man was a dedicated karate researcher as well as a skilled practitioner who knew many of the old masters and was friendly with karate men of other styles. Nagamine's specific style is called Matsubayashi Shorin-ryu. He was a policeman by trade, and has written a second book called "Tales of Okinawa's Great Masters", which includes much more about his experiences delving into karate history.
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Initial post: Jul 5, 2010 5:25:55 PM PDT
Exactly what I wanted to know...
Posted on Oct 15, 2011 3:09:53 PM PDT
Very thoughtful and complete write-up. I was looking for a book to describe, illustrate, and perhaps expound on Shorin-Ryu as a philosophy. I can buy this book with confidence.
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