Master Chotoku Kyan (1870-1945) was born in a noble family of the island of Okinawa, Japan. Very early, his father, Chofu Kyan, who was a karate adept, imposed re-enforcement exercises on him to fortify his body and mind.
portrait of Master Chotoku Kyan
Thereafter, thanks in part to the social position of his family, he received the instruction of several great masters of the time like Sokon Matsumura (1809-1899), Anko itosu (1830-1915) and K. Oyatomari (1831-1905). Master Kyan was very small in size but very effective in combat. He received the name chan mi gua (small-eyed Kyan).
Master Chotoku Kyan
Many katas of the tomari-te school were transmitted through him. He trained a number of students who in turn founded their own schools of karate-do. They includeTatsuo Shimabuku (1908-1975), founder of the isshin-ryu school, Soshin Nagamine (1907-1997), founder of the matsubayashi shorin-ryu school, Tsuyoshi (Chinen) Chitose (1898-1984), founder of the chito-ryuu school, Zenryo Shimabukuro (1908-1969), founder of the shorin-ryu seibukan school and many others.
Master Chotoku Kyan supervising his pupils