Wednesday 25 May 2022

Kenei Mabuni Biography

Soke Kenei Mabuni 

2nd Successor of Shito-ryu Karate-do

Kenei Mabuni was born in Shuri, Okinawa, on February 13, 1918. He was the first born of the three children of master Kenwa Mabuni, founder of Shito ryu Karate do. Because of his father, he was involved in Karate from a very early age.

Besides training in Karate, Ruy-kyu Kobudo and Ju Jutsu, with Kenwa Mabuni, Kenei also trained in Kendo and Judo at school as well as Ninjutsu by 14th generation Koga ryu Master Seiko Fujita.

In 1928, as a teenager, and after his family moved to the Kansai district in Osaka of mainland Japan, he often accompanied his father on his numerous training trips, and on many occasions he participated in Shito ryu Karate do demonstrations.

kenei_mabuni  (left) Kenwa Mabuni - (right) Kenei Mabuni

On March 1934, Kenwa Mabuni, established his personal dojo in Osaka. This was named "Yoshukan" (cultivation of superior skill and spirit ). Many masters of Karate visited the dojo to train with him. These included Motobu Choki, Konishi Yasuhiro, Moden Yabiku and Funakoshi Gichin. Kenei therefore became acquainted with them all.


After the end of World War II, Kenei continued to help his father in training and promoting Shito ryu Karate do all over Japan.

In 1947 after an examination he got a license for chiropractor.

When his father suddenly passed away on May 23, 1952, Kenei Mabuni became his Soke (successor ), and he inherited the original name of Master’s Kenwa Mabuni’s personal dojo, "Yoshukan".

Soke Kenei Mabuni

His knowledge and skills in Karate have made him famous and respected all over the world. Since the early 1960s, he has made numerous trips to many countries to teach Shito ryu Karate do.

During the inaugural of the 1st World Karate-do Championship (WUKO), in 1970, he demonstrated for the first time the "Nipaipo" kata of Gokenki Sensei.

Soke Kenei Mabuni & Sensei Con Kassis  Soke Kenei Mabuni performing tobi yoko geri 

In 1972, he was certified by the "Federation of All Japan Karate-do Organization" (FAJKO), as a first class examiner.

The Japan Martial Arts Council (Nippon Budo Kyougi Kai), presented him "The Distinguished Service Medal", for his contribution, on January 15th , 1984. 

On March 17, 1993 in Osaka, Kenei Mabuni helped found the "World Shito ryu Karate do Federation", of which he was made Governor (Sosai).

Kenei Mabuni has devoted his entire life to training and teaching Shito ryu Karate do and has succeeded in promoting his father’s unique system all over the world.

He left this life on December 19, 2015 aged 97, leaving to those who were aquainted to him, especially his students, the task of promoting the beautiful art of Shito ryu Karate do, exactlly like he did.

Soke Kenei Mabuni & Sensei Mizoguchi



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