Kyokushin is a style of stand-up, full contact karate, founded in 1957 by Masutatsu (Mas) Oyama. In 1953 he initially began teaching Karate under Oyama Dojo where he taught a form of Goju-Ryu. Sosai Oyama was born in Korea but lived Japan and attained his knowledge of the arts through training in several styles of martial arts, including Kempo, judo, Gōjū-ryū and Shotokan karate. He was a former student of Shotokan, under Gichin Funakoshi, in which he obtained the rank of 4th Dan. Not to mention also having the ranks of 7th Dan in Gōjū-ryū Karate and 4th Dan in Judo. Sosai used his knowledge of the martial arts to create his own style, which he named Kyokushin in 1964. Kyokushin means “the ultimate truth” in Japanese. Kyokushin was developed from the determination of the pursuit of ultimate truth of mind, technique, and body. It is rooted in a philosophy of self-improvement, discipline and hard training. Oyama believed karate practice should include intense, rigorous training methods and realistic fighting.
In Kyokushin Karate the focus is on the full-contact aspect of fighting, without neglecting the other aspects, such kihon (basics), kata (form), and Goshin Jitsu (self defense). Whatever your reasons and goals are, practicing Kyokushin Karate can help you become stronger, healthier and a better human being.
Sosai Mas Oyama, often said that the difference between sports and Budō, or “The Martial Way“, is the path of self-discipline. Budō is this challenge in life itself. Kyokushin Karate was founded by a man who was dedicated to Budō. Sosai Oyama died in 1994, but his Budō spirit lives on and we are dedicated to keeping his spirit alive.
After the death of Masutatsu (Sosai) Oyama in 1994, the founder of Kyokushin Karate, the Kyokushinkaikan Karate Organization split into various groups. As a result of this division into various factions, the number of Kyokushin Karate organizations and dojos increased rapidly throughout the world. Many of these organizations began to modify the teachings of Sosai as it benefited them. It became clear that with so many organizations changing basic techniques, katas and kumite rules (as it applies to the sport version), Kyokushin Karate was moving further and further away from what Sosai taught.
To preserve the legacy of Sosai and his teachings, under the leadership of Daigo Oishi Hanshi, the International Karatedo Federation Kyokushin Kaikan Sekai So-Kyokushin was established. The “So” in Sekai So-Kyokushin means “total” which reflects the commitment to teach and practice all aspects of Kyokushin Karate including grappling, self-defense, and a more realistic application of techniques.
So-Kyokushin is focused on ensuring that Kyokushin Karate remains true to the original teachings which Hanshi received directly from Sosai. Hanshi’s strong will is contagious and spreads throughout the So-Kyokushin world to ensure that future generations of Kyokushin practitioners carry on the value to Sosai’s teachings.
In July 2023, Central Florida Kyokushin requested and was admitted as a member of the International Karatedo Federation Kyokushin Kaikan Sekai So-Kyokushin with the recommendation of Tom Flynn Shihan of Green Mountain Kyokushin Karate.