Yagi Meitoku & Meibukan Goju - the person who received Chojun Miyagi's belt

Meibukan (明武舘) is a version of goju-ryu karate and was created by Sensei Meitoku Yagi (born in 1912). Yagi was a student of Goju-ryu's founder, Chojun Miyagi (and arguably his most sentior student as he was:

  • passed Miyagi's belt (althouugh this was done  ten years after Miyagi's death)
  • the first student of Miyagi Sensei recorded to be given permission to open their own dojo (which he did in 1952)
Yagi Dai Sensei was a founding father of the Okinawa Goju-Kai and All Okinawa Karate-Do Association both of which the Meibukan Hombu Dojo has been actively a part of since their formation.

His style, Meibukan, translates as a name to"House of the pure-minded warrior." Meibukai practice Goju-ryu kata, as well as its own set of kata developed by Dai Sensei. Wikipedia states that Yagi Meitoku (in his late teens) was the first to learn the complete early set of Goju-ryu Kaishu Kata (Geki Sai Ichi, Geki Sai Ni, Saifa, Shisochin, Sanseryu, Seisan, Seienchin, Sepai, Kururunfa, Suparinpe)Yagi Sensei also adapted some of the Meibuken Kaishu kata to bō and sai, and are commonly referred to as Meibuken Kobudo

Left - Video 1:
At the 1980 World Matsubayashi Ryu Celebration. Uechi Kanei Sensei performs Sanseiryu. Yagi Meitoku Sensei performs Seipai. Film courtesy of Joseph Carbonara Sensei.

meitoku yagi meibukan karate okinawa

Left - Video 2: A video from around 1990 which documents some of Meibukan's training and interview Yagi Meitoku. It includes footage of Seipai and Seicnchin kata.

Note: If your web browser does not show this video try the Google video link:

Like most true Okinawan styles Meibukan practices Yakusoku Kumite only (prearranged sparring). There is no practice of Jiyu Kumite or free sparring as in the mainland Japan/sport styles of karate.

Currently, Dai Sensei's eldest son, YAGI Meitatsu Sensei, Hanshi is Chairman of the IMGKA (International Meibukan Goju-ryu Karate Association) and travels the world frequently.

Seipai kata DVD download video karate bunkai