Bunkai Practices with Kyoshi Ante Brännbacka (Aragaki Sochin)

Bunkai Practices with Kyoshi Ante Brännbacka (Aragaki Sochin)

Bunkai Practices with Kyoshi Ante Brännbacka (Aragaki Sochin)

The London course with Kyoshi Ante Brännbacka (Aragaki Sochin) took place on the weekend of 22 and 23 September 2018.

This was the second year in a row the London Koryukan hosted Kyoshi Brännbacka.

Like the 2017 course with Kyoshi Olaf Krey, this year's course was held at the Somers Town Community Sports Centre.

The weekend once again conisted of three individual two and a half hour sessions.

Bunkai Practices with Kyoshi Ante Brännbacka (Aragaki Sochin)

Aragaki Sochin

This year's topic was Sochin kata and applications.

Sochin was originally taught by Aragaki seisho (1840-1918). Amongst Aragaki's students was Higashionna Kanryo, the teacher of Goju Ryu founder Chojun Miyagi.

Aragaki famously demonstrated Sanchin, Seisan and Peichurin (Suparinpei) at the 1876 Ochayagoten (East Garden Tea Plaza) celebrations. Higashionana is believed to have started studying under Aragai that same year.

Aragaki’s only recorded martial arts instructor was Wai Xinxian from Fuzhou, China, the same instructor Higashionna is believed to have initially trained under (upon his arrival in Fuzhou in March of 1873).

Although mostly associated with Naha-te, Aragaki also taught Sochin, Niseshi and Unshu to the bushi of Shuri.

Application practices

Over the weekend Kyoshi Brännbacka introduced 12 sets of application practices.

Each set dealt with a specific habitual act of physical violence. The acts ranging from being seized/shoved to being grabbed by the wrists, punched etc.

Some postures related to broader tactics and/or strategies. A recurring theme was preventing an opponent from bridging the gap (literally) between the free standing phase and the clinch.

The following HAPV were covered and finally merged into a single contuous 2-person drill:

1. One handed wrist grab (HAPV # 22)

2. Single shoulder grab from the rear (HAPV # 26)

3. Double hand choke from the front (HAPV # 12)

4. Single hand shove (HAPV # 31)

5. Front arm bar (tricep tendon fulcrum up supported by the wrist) (HAPV # 28)

6. Straight punches (HAPV # 3)

And variations on these themes

The course was enjoyed by all by all accounts.


For more info on some historical data surrounding Aragaki Seisho, please refer to Hanshi McCarthy’s excellent 1994 interview, first published in the magazine Fighting Arts International, 'Karatedo Kurofune (The Black Ship of Karate-do)’.


A classic version of Aragaki Sochin performed by Aragaki Isumu.


Joost Frehe