Karate's origins reach
back 1500 years to ancient China and India, but its
immediate predecessor evolved in Okinawa as a martial
art deeply imbued with philisophical principles. In
1922, Gichin Funakoshi, the "Father of Modern Karate,"
was chosen by his colleagues and Okinawan government
officials to demonstrate this martial art in mainland
Japan. Master Funakoshi stressed its practice as a path
toward physical and spiritual development. In response
to the enthusiastic reception, Master Funakoshi devoted
himself until his death in 1957 to teaching karate-do,
or the way of karate, primarily in universities
throughout Japan. Derived from Master's artist name,
Shoto, his students became known as members of Shotokan,
or House of Shoto.