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Ginchin Funakoshi is the master responsible for the advocacy of shotokan karate. Master Funakoshi had studied his martial arts from two primary sources, one by the name of master Itosu and the other master name Mastumura. The name karate is broken into two symbols of a Okinawa heritage. The first being kara (which represented china) and the other (te) which stood for hand. By combining both symbols the name karate was made.

The word Shotokan was the alter ego of master Funakoshi. This is the name he used for signature whenever he would write a poem or any other type of literature. The name Shotokan means (pine waves). This is the representation of air flowing through the needles of the pine trees in a forest. This name was used by all of his students to recognize master Funakoshi for his life long contribution. Thus the name Shotokan karate.