Hawaii Karate Seinenkai
The Hawaii Karate Seinenkai Salutes:
Chosei Motobu
born July 24, 1925

Born in Osaka on July 24, 1925, Chosei Motobu is the son of the legendary Choki Motobu (also known as Motobu No Saru). Choki Motobu visited Hawaii in March 1932, but upon his arrival encountered visa problems. He was refused admission and detained at the Honolulu immigration station for about one month before being returned to Japan.

Chosei Motobu studied Karate with this father in Osaka as a child. He was 19 when his father passed way. At that time, Chosei Motobu was in the Japanese military. After World War Two, he returned to Osaka where he became a policeman. During the course of his career, he also studied Judo, attaining the rank of 5th dan. Chosei Motobu has a great respect for Judo and often warns his Motobu-Ryu students to never underestimate the strength and value of Judo. In fact, when he teaches Karate, he wears a woven Judo-type gi rather than a lighter Karate gi.

Chosei Motobu resumed teaching Motobu-Ryu in Osaka in 1948 and was joined by Takeji Inaba (December 24, 1929), who had started his training with him in 1943. Together, Motobu Chosei and Inaba have continuously taught Motobu-Ryu to this day. Their Osaka dojo is known as the Motobu-Ryu Daidokan and their association is known as the Nihon Karatedou Motobukai. they teach the Naihanchi Shodan and Nidan Kata as well as the Motobu Choki Juni Hon Kumite forms.

Because he was still young when his father died, Motobu Chosei sought out additional Karate instruction. He trained with a Mr. Kina who was a student of Gusukuma Sensei (presumably Gusukuma Shimpan) of Okinawa. He also sought out instruction from his uncle's (Motobu Choyu's) student, Seikichi Uehara (1904 - 2004), who would come to Osaka to teach. In fact, in the Daidokan they practice five kata from Uehara Sensei's curriculum called Motode.

Chosei Motobu is the inheritor of Motobu-Ryu (his father's art) and Motobu-Ryu Udunde (his uncle Choyu Motobu's art via Uehara). Photos of Motobu can be seen at the Japan Branch of the Kempo Jutsu-Kai website.

Chosei Motobu and Takeji Inaba at the Hikari Dojo, April 25, 2001.

Chosei Motobu was almost unknown in the West until 2000, when Kimo Ferreira of Hawaii visited him in Osaka and invited him to Hawaii. In April, 2002, Motobu and Inaba arrived in Hawaii. They met with the family of Thomas Shigeru Miyashiro, who had trained with Choki Motobu during his 1932 visit. They also taught at the Hikari Dojo and at Ferreira's Kempo Jutsu-Kai Dojo. Chosei Motobu said that he came to Hawaii to fulfill his father's wish to teach the art here -- a wish that had been with his family for almost 70 years.

Motobu and Inaba have subsequently taught seminars on the mainland and in Europe, in each case, accompanied by Kimo Ferreira and his wife, Kiko, who is an excellent translator.

The Hawaii Karate Seinenkai salutes Chosei Motobu.

Videos About Motobu:

  • The Karate of Choki Motobu

    by Tsunami Video

    The producer of this video has stated: "This is the Motobu family system of Tode (karate) presented by Chosei Motobu and Takeji Inaba including the kumite techniques and their applications. It is the only reference work in the West on this style, and is released with the full cooperation and approval of the Motobu family and the Japan Karate Do Motobukai."


click above to order


  • Motobu-Ryu Karate-Jutsu

    by Quest Co. Ltd. Japan

    This DVD shows the Naihanchi Shodan kata as well as the Motobu Choki Juni Hon Kumite forms. A special feature of the DVD shows some of Motobu Sensei's international visits, including his visit to Hawaii in 2001.



Books by Choki Motobu:

042 046

Articles about Motobu:


The spirit of Karate is the Aloha spirit


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