The History of Kyokushin


The founder of our system Matutatsu Oyama, was born in 1923 near Seoul in South Korea. He studied Chinese Kempo from the age of 9.

At the age of 12 Mas Oyama moved to Japan and enrolled at university. After mastering Judo he became a student of the legendary Gichin Funakoshi, he made such rapid progress that by the age of 17 he had gained the grade of Nidan (2nd Dan) and by the age of 24 became Yondan (4th Dan).

During the War he was drafted into the military but after the war in 1974 he won the all Japan Karate Championship against all comers!

Deciding he wanted to devote the rest of his life to spreading his knowledge of Karate, he spent the next years in seclusion, living in the mountains, subjecting himself to the rigours of hard physical training practicing his martial arts both day and night, meditating on Zen precepts and seeking enlightenment.

During this period of self exile he struggled with wild animals and smashed trees and rocks with his bare handstand meditated under the flow of icy waterfalls in an extreme course of self discipline. In 1951 he returned to civilisation and started his own Dojo. HIs fame spread rapidly and his ability was sensational, among many of his feats he was know for defeating a bull with his bare hands.

After many successful tours demonstrating his style and skills, training dojo’s were set up all over the world. In 1965 the 5 story Honbu was opened in Tokyo. Today there are Kyokushin branches in over forty countries worldwide.