Hawaii Karate Seinenkai
The Hawaii Karate Seinenkai Salutes:

Mas Oyama (left) and Bobby Lowe (right)

Masutatsu ("Mas") Oyama
July 27, 1923 - April 26, 1994

Mas Oyama was born on July 27, 1923, in South Korea. As a youth, he studied the Chinese art of Kempo. While attending school in Japan, he became a student of Gichin Funakoshi (student of Anko Itosu and Anko Asato, and founder of the Shotokan form of Karate). Later he studied Goju-Ryu under Nei-Chu So, who appears to have been a student of Gogen Yamaguchi, who in turned learned from Chojun Miyagi (student of Kanryo Higashionna, and founder of Goju-Ryu). Oyama eventually founded the Kyokushin ("ultimate truth") form of Karate. Full contact sparring is a prominent characteristic of this style.

Oyama first visited Hawaii in 1952 on his way to the mainland to popularize the art of Karate. In Hawaii he met Bobby Lowe. So impressed was Lowe with Oyama's form of Kyokushin Karate, that he he became Oyama's student and spent years learning directly from him in Japan. Oyama also visited Hawaii several more times. In 1957, Lowe opened the first Kyokushin dojo outside of Japan. In 1964, Lowe wrote Mas Oyama's Karate, which has sold over 1 million copies. Lowe continues to teach Kyokushin Karate to this day.

Oyama was the author of several books and was featured in numerous videos about his form of Karate. His first English book, What is Karate?, was published in 1958. At right is the cover of his Vital Karate, first published in 1967. Many of Oyama's books are part of the Hawaii Karate Museum rare book collection.

The Hawaii Karate Seinenkai salutes Mas Oyama.

The spirit of Karate is the Aloha spirit


Copyright © Hikari Institute, a Hawaii non-profit corporation and federally
tax exempt organization under IRC 501(c)(3). All rights reserved.