Productions recently announced the publication of a four part video series
by Shinyu Gushi, 8th Dan, on Pangai Noon Uechi karate. We were fortunate enough
to be given a pre-publication screening in the company of Gushi sensei at
Tsunami's editing facility. These are the first thirty minute video programs
to be produced by Tsunami and they sell for $30 each.
become accustomed to 50 or more minutes of superb material in a typical video
from this company I had my doubts about the change in format-doubts that were
quickly dispelled. Shinyu Gushi studied with all three of the founder's top
students-Kanei Uechi, Saburo Uehara and Seiyu Shinjo and his technique is
therefore, completely authentic and unchanged by modern concepts or practices.
He is unashamedly an exponent of ancient karate and in this new series he
gives us a glimpse of how things were a century ago before the advent of group
training, commercial dojos, and eclectic martial arts. The intensity of his
training is exceptional and it is for his benefit alone and not to impress
or otherwise influence the viewer. He is completely dedicated to his art and
still intent upon his perfection of it after nearly a half century of training.
he performs Sanchin the trademark Uechi glare makes his eyes shine and one
can see through these windows to the soul, the absolute determination of the
man to destroy any enemy who is unwise enough to confront him.His physical
condition also is impressive, as is the power and precision of his movement.
This level of excellence is only reached by a handful of karate masters in
full maturity after a lifetime of serious training. It is the same plateau
of achievement that is occupied by celebrated concert pianists and composers,
great artists and sculptors, writers and poets of international repute. Members
of an elite group-those who have been touched by the Gods.I gathered from
the videos that the production team felt the same about Gushi sensei, or,
perhaps I was influenced by the way they presented the material. In any case
the videos are among the most impressive Tsunami have ever made-and I have
seen all of their previous offerings.
1 concentrates on Sanchin, its performance and relevant training methods.
The kata is shown in great detail and from different angles so that there
can be no doubt in the viewers mind how it should be performed. These
people know what they are doing so the explanations are straightforward and
lucid. Tsukasa Gushi and Makoto Fukumoto demonstrate training methods
and are then "tested" by Gushi sensei with kicks and punches as they perform
this trademark kata. Then, to prove their focus and level of body conditioning
wood is broken across the stomach, shoulder, and then the unsupported
shins of the students.
test breaking is performed, and this is very impressive. The producer wisely
does not cut away before or after the breaking so we see the whole sequence
in full speed and slow motion. The material can be observed in detail and
clearly has not been tampered with as is the case in other productions I have
seen. I suppose we have all became rather accustomed to demonstrations of
breaking, but to see a student kick through a "four by two" with his shin
should impress anyone, it certainly impressed me. Clearly in a contest with
these people it would not be a good idea to leave your legs undefended.
2 shows the primary techniques of Pangai Noon Uechi including Mawashi Uke
Shoken; Mawashi Uke Sokuto Geri; Zenkosoku Shomen Geri; Hiji Zuki; Mawashi
Zuki; Wa Uke; Sukui Age Uke Gedan Barai; Hajiki Uke; Wa Uke Kamae; Shomen
Hajiki; Koi No Shippo; Koi No Shippo-Yoko; Watari Uke; Fumikomi Harai Tsukui
Age Harai; Suegoshi Hijitsuke and the kata Kanshiwa, Kanshu, and Seichin,
the latter also performed as yakusoku kumite. Everything is very easy to follow,
clear, precise, and beautifully produced.Part 3 include the balance of the
kata except Sanseru which is included in part 4 with techniques for the bo,
eku and jiffa, (kanzashi) the hairpin worn at one time by all
have earned their reputation by being a world away from their nearest
competitiors in the areas of author qualification, quality, and value. They
have consistently improved their products by taking advantage of the latest
developments in video technology and upgrading their equipment on a regular
basis. The introduction of 64 track stereo sound, four brand new Sony cameras
and superb animation all serve to make the Pangai Noon Uechi series, in my
opinion, the very best they have produced.On a personal note, Gushi sensei
and his other son Atsushi are accomplished traditional musicians, and the
latter frequently appears professionally in his homeland. The soundtrack for
this series was specially produced by Atsushi and is quite superb. The opening
sequence featuring the voices of Tsukasa Nakamura and Yasuharu Higa combined
with the animated sequence was, for me, memorable.This series is everything
we have come to expect from Tsunami, and more.
excellent teacher, fabulous editing, unequaled sound and picture quality together
with plenty of solid instructional content. Running time approx. 30
minutes; $30 each program.
".viewers will learn the discipline's history through a wonderfully narrated
montage of old film
clips and photo-graphs. students and master also break
some wooden blocks across their stomachs and shins.their unshakable concentration
is truly remarkable.strongly recommended."
Vol 14 #5 - September 1999
Pangai Noon Uechi series by Shinyu Gushi sensei has not only taken the karate
community by storm
but also won high praise from the normally conservative world of library review
as the Video Librarian. Gaining very high marks for instructional value,
the four part series
has succeeded brilliantly in presenting the complete style in a clear, technically
accurate yet (as
always with Tsunami videos) artistic and very satisfying way.
you are thinking about taking up an ancient style of karate but concerned
about what this entails,
this is where you should go first. While you may find the severity of
the workouts alarming,
the results they produce are probably the best incentive you can have to get
The power of the students is incredible, and their strength and fitness, superb.
The physical condition and fitness of Gushi sensei as he enters his fifth
decade of training,
the techniques seem unusual, perhaps even a little bizarre compared to the
very modern karate
styles like Shotokan and Wado Ryu, this is the hallmark of their origins.
Shinyu Gushi is
only one generation removed from the founder of the style, Kanbun Uechi, and
therefore only two
generations removed from its Chinese roots. This is still a martial
art. Style or form is of
secondary importance, getting the job done is what it's all about. One sees
therefore in the
performers a strength of purpose that is somewhat disturbing-a determination
to prevail and
survive that is primeval in its intensity.
better person could not have been chosen to present this series. Shinyu
Gushi surpasses the egendary
reputation he has enjoyed for so long in Okinawa. His students, Tsukasa
Gushi and Makoto
Fukumoto set an example of relaxed efficiency and technical excellence it
difficult to better, and that bodes well for the survival of true karate.
While the four videos
are at first a little overwhelming because of the quantity, power, and complexity
techniques, repeated viewing develops a respect for the performers and their
style which is,
to honest karate practitioners, a little humbling.
the reviewer from the Video Librarian told her readers: "viewers will learn
history through a wonderfully narrated montage of old film and photographs."
"The techniques are then demonstrated by 8th Dan Shinyu Gushi and two students,
powerful punches, kicks and whacks with wooden planks on various parts of
Video Librarian awarded the Pangai Noon Uechi Karate series a score of three
and one half out
of an almost impossible to achieve four stars. In the same edition of
the journal a PBS documentary
selling at $225 scored two and one half stars, a documentary from the Canadian
Board ($295) received three stars, while the powerful acting combination of
Ben Kingsley, and Amy Irving could only manage a one and one half star for
a seal of approval were needed for the Pangai Noon Uechi video series, here
it is. This independent
and highly respected journal used by video librarians throughout the U.S.
has placed it in their highest but one category. We cannot disagree
with them. Super technique,
great editing, fabulous sound and at $30 each (30 minute running time) great
series is a must have!
in the following formats:
ship within 24hrs.)