OUR WEAPONS: Kobudo and Iaido


“Ryu Kyu Kobudo” The original Kobudo of Okinawa

Kobudo is the art of using ancient farming and fishing implements as weapons. The peaceful Okinawan people were forced to use these in defending themselves aginst Pirates and the invading Japanese.

Hanshi Woodard brings Masters from Japan and Okinawa to train with his students at the Ocala Karate Dojo. Here Hanshi Tamayose President of the Ryu Kyu Kobudo Tesshinkan presents Hanshi Woodard with Nidan Certificate at the Ocala Karate Doj.

Ryu Kyu Kobudo

Taira Shinken called “The Father of Modern Kobudo” was born Maezato Shinken on June 12th, 1897 on the island of Kumejima (Kume Island) off of Japan. Tradition has it that Master Shinken was introduced to kobudo by his grandfather Kanegawa Gimu (1862-1921) . During Master Shinken’s studies with Master Funakoshi they traveled extensively in the Kanto area promoting and demonstrating karate at several universities. In constant desire to learn more Taira Shinken asked Master Funakoshi to introduce him to a friend and colleague of Master Funakoshi’s  that he met in Osaka years earlier, named Master Kenwa Mabuni(founder of Shito Ryu Karate Do). . As a result of this help from Master Funakoshi young Master Shinken did become a student of Master Mabuni ,who was the first person to introduce Kobudo to the mainland of Japan. Many of Master Mabuni’s students also later supported Master Shinken. Such as Sakagami Ryusho, Master Mabuni’s Son, Kunishi Yasuhiro, Kuniba Shogo (Soke Kozo’s father), and Hayashi Teruo, as well as both Eizo and Tatsuo Shimabuku. It was these men that were responsible for the spread of Master Shinken’s Kobudo throughout the world.
The Late Shogo Kuniba was a direct student of Tiara Shinken (modern day founder of Kobudo), and one of the original Japanese Shihan under the Hozon Shin Ko Kai. Hanshi Woodard began his Ryu Kyu Kobudo training in this system. Later known as Ryu Kyu Kobudo Kuniba Ha, also known as Ryu Kyu Kobudo Tiara Ha.

The Kuniba family linage can be traced back as direct decendents of the first family of royalty of Okinawa with the Okinawan pronunciation of Kuniba as Kokuba.

Eisuke Akamine was the direct successor to the Ryu Kyu Kobudo Hozon Shin Ko Kai system of Tiara Shinken (modern day founder of Kobudo). This is the first complete Kobudo Systems to ever be developed. Comprising of weapons such as: Bo (staff), Nunchaku (flail), Tekko (knuckle duster), Sai (trencheon), Tonfa (grinding handle), Eku (boat oar), Kama (sicle).
He was the instructor of Hanshi Hidemi Tamayose
Hidemi Tamayose “Kaicho” President of the Ryu Kyu Kobudo Tesshinkan in Okinawa was a direct student of Akamine Sensei. Upon the death of Akamine Sensei, Hanshi Tamayose  formed the Ryu Kyu Kobudo Tesshinkan to preserve the system taught to him by his long time instructor. Tamayose Sensei now serves as the instructor to Hanshi Bill Woodard and certifies his students Kobudo in Okinawa.
Hanshi Woodard with Hanshi Tamayose in the Ozato, Okinawa Dojo. Hanshi Woodard became a member of the Ryu Kyu Kobudo Tesshinkan shortly after it was formed in May 1999. He was promoted to Nidan in this system by Hanshi Tamayose in 2002.

Hanshi Bill Woodard receives his 6th Degree Black Belt in Okinawan Ryu Kyu Kobudo and the title of  Shihan issued by Soke Kozo Kuniba of the Kuniba Kai after testing 2/08/09 at the Ocala Karate Dojo in front of members from as far away as Virginia. He received his 5th Degree Black Belt in this system in 1991.
He also holds a 2nd Degree Black Belt in Ryu Kyu Kobudo Tesshinkan issued by Hanshi Hidemi Tamayose. Hanshi Woodard became a member of the Ryu Kyu Kobudo Hozon Shin Ko Kai in 1997, and the Ryu Kyu Kobudo Tesshinkan in August of 1999 shortly after it was formed to help preserve these ancient arts.

Mugai Ryu Iaido

The art of Drawing and Cutting with the Samurai Sword.
The Dojo also offers the rare art of Mugai Ryu Iaido. We offer the finest hand made swords.
All Students in this class begin with the Boken (wooden sword) then move on to the Katana.
Hanshi Woodard’s Students have won many competition with the sword including Gold Medals at the AAU State Championships.