Shugoro Nakazato's Kobudo

Published: February 19, 2022

Yesterday, Andreas Quast posted a video of the Kokusaireingokai version of Sakugawa nu Kun Dai. Interesting thing about this kata is that it is a totally different kata than the kata in the Taira lineage.
The Kokusaireingokai school of Kobudo is related to the Shorin-Ryu Shorinkan school of karate, which was founded by Shugoro Nakazato (1920 - 2016). Nakazato started training in kobudo in 1935 under Seiro Tonaki, who was a student of Masami Chinen, and trained with him until the start of World War II. After the war, Nakazato trained directly under Masami Chinen.
A parallel line in their Kobudo linage comes from Kenko Nakaima (1911 - 1989) from Ryuei-Ryu who started training non family members in his family style in 1970. The Nakaima family lineage goes back through Sensei Nakaima's father, Kenchu Nakaima and his father, Norisato Nakaima. Norisato Nakaima learned martial arts during his stay in China.

The Okinawa Karate Information Center has published a lot of movies on YouTube for the 1st Okinawa Karate International Tournament that took place in 2018. There are several kata from Kokusaireingokai, only the name of the Sensei who's performing is not known. Nevertheless, I thought it would be interesting to put together the movies that are available in a short article.

Shushi nu Kun
According to Shorinkan, their Shushi nu Kun comes from the Chinen lineage (Yamane-Ryu) and is also called 'Yamane no Bo Shushi no Kon'. (Source:

So the lineage here is: Seiro Tonaki / Masamine Chinen -> Shugoro Nakazato

If you compare this version of Shushi nu Kun to that of Shogen-Ryu, which also stems from Yamane-Ry, you can see it has the same embusen, but the techniques are executed differently.

The Kokusaireingokai version of Shushi nu Kun

Sakugawa nu Kun Sho and Dai
As mentioned above, the Dai version of Sakugawa nu Kun from Kokusaireingokai is totally different than the kata in the Taira lineage. As fas as I know, the lineage of this kata in Kokusaireingokai is not known. The Sho version has similarities with the Sho version in the Taira lineage, but is has some extra techniques added at the beginning of the kata and skipped some techniques in the middle and the end.

The Kokusaireingokai version of Sakugawa nu Kun Sho

The Kokusaireingokai version of Sakugawa nu Kun Dai

Sai kata
The Sai kata in Kokusaireingokai are simply called Sai Ichi, Sai Ni and Sai San. Pavel Dolgachev and Joe Stitz told me that Sai Ichi and Sai Ni are also called Nakaima no Sai Ichi and Nakaima no Sai Ni and are almost the same as the kata practiced in Ryuei-Ryu
As Shuguro Nakazato studied Kobudo with Kenko Nakaima of Ryuei-Ryu, it's most obvious Shuguro Nakazato learned these kata from him.
Pavel Dolgachev also mentioned that Sai Ichi is almost the same as Kuniyoshi no Sai found in some schools of Okinawa Kenpo, but it is unknown which influenced which.

Kokusaireingokai Sai I

Kokusaireingokai Sai II

Kokusaireingokai Sai III

Author: Olaf Steinbrecher in cooperation with Andreas Quast