بوئین زهرا دهکده کیوکوشین (استاد یوسف شیرزاد)

Mas Oyama

Mas Oyama

Masutatsu Oyama

Mas Oyama


July 27, 1923(1923-07-27)
Gimje, Jeollabuk-do, Korea


April 26, 1994(1994-04-26) (aged 70)
Tokyo, Japan


Kyokushin karate


10th dan karate4th dan judo


Chiyako Oyama (1926–2006)

Notable students

Steve Arneil, Hideyuki Ashihara, Bobby Lowe, Tadashi Nakamura, Terutomo Yamazaki, Tae Hong Choi


This article contains Korean text. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Hangul or hanja.

Masutatsu Oyama (大山 倍達, Ōyama Masutatsu?, July 27, 1923 – April 26, 1994), more commonly known as Mas Oyama, was a karate master who founded Kyokushinkai, arguably the first and most influential style of full contact karate. He was born Choi Yeong-eui (Korean: 최영의, Hanja: 崔永宜). A Zainichi Korean, he spent most of his life living in Japan and chose to become a Japanese citizen in 1964.[citation needed]

Early life

Oyama was born in Gimje, South Korea, during Japanese occupation. At a young age he was sent to Manchuria to live on his sister's farm. Oyama began studying martial arts at age 9 from a Chinese seasonal worker who was working on the farm. His name was Lee and Oyama said he was his very first teacher. Lee gave the young Oyama a seed which he was to plant; when it sprouted, he was to jump over it one hundred times every day. As the seed grew and became a plant, Oyama later said, "I was able to jump between walls back and forth easily." However, the story of the young Oyama's life has been sensationalized in manga and movies so the line between fiction and fact has become obscure.

In March 1938, Oyama left for Japan following his brother who enrolled in the Yamanashi Aviation School Imperial Japanese Army aviation school.[1] He was inspired to go to Japan by General Kanji Ishihara who was against the invasion of Asian neighbors (as a consequence, he was ostracized by higher ranks of the Japanese Army), to carve out his future in the heart of the Empire of Japan.

Post-World War II

in 1945 after the war ended Oyama left the Aviation school. He began "Eiwa Karate Research Center" in Suginami ward but closed quickly because "I soon realized that I was an unwanted Korean. Nobody would rent me a room."[1] He finally found a place to live at a corner of Tokyo. This is where he met his future wife whose mother ran a dormitory for university students.

In 1946, Oyama enrolled in Waseda University Sports Education.

Wanting the best in instruction, he contacted the Shotokan (Karate school) operated by Gigō Funakoshi, the second son of karate master Gichin Funakoshi. He became a student, and began his lifelong career in Karate. Feeling like a foreigner in a strange land, he remained isolated, and trained in solitude.[1]

Oyama attended Takushoku University in Tokyo and was accepted as a student at the dojo (training hall) of Gichin Funakoshi, the founder of shotokan. He trained with Funakoshi for two years, then studied Gōjū-ryū karate for several years with "So Nei Chu" (소네이쥬, 1907-?),[citation needed] a senior student of the system's founder, Chojun Miyagi and was eventually graded to 8th Dan in the system by Gogen Yamaguchi who at the time was the head of Goju ryu in mainland Japan.

Korea had been officially annexed by Japan since 1910. During World War II (1939–1945) there was much unrest throughout Korea. As South Korea began to fight against North Korea over political ideology, Oyama became increasingly distressed. He recounts, "though I was born and bred in Korea, I had unconsciously made myself liberal; I felt repulsion against the strong feudal system of my fatherland, and that was one of the reasons which made me run away from home to Japan."[1] He joined a Korean political organization in Japan to strive for the unification of Korea, but soon was being targeted and harassed by the Japanese police. He then consulted with a fellow Korean from the same native province, Mr. Neichu So, who was a Goju Karate expert.[1]

Around the time he also went around Tokyo getting in fights with the US Military Police. He later reminisced those times in a television interview, "Itsumitemo Haran Banjyo" (Nihon Television), "I lost many friends during the war- the very morning of their departure as Kamikaze pilots, we had breakfast together and in the evening their seats were empty. After the war ended, I was angry- so I fought as many US Military as I can, until my portrait was all over the police station." At this time, Mr. So suggested that Oyama retreat to a lone mountain for solace to train his mind and body. He set out to spend three years on Mt. Minobu in Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. Oyama built a shack on the side of the mountain. One of his students named Yashiro accompanied him, but after the rigors of this isolated training, with no modern conveniences, the student snuck away one night, and left Oyama alone. With only monthly visits from a friend in the town of Tateyama in Chiba Prefecture, the loneliness and harsh training became grueling. Oyama began to doubt his decision, so he sent a letter to the man who suggested the retreat. Mr. So replied with encouragement to remain, and suggested that he shave off one eyebrow so that he would not be tempted to come out of the mountain and let anyone see him that way. Oyama remained on the mountain for fourteen months, and returned to Tokyo a much stronger and more fierce Karateka.[1]

He was forced to leave his mountain retreat after his sponsor had stopped supporting him. Months later, after he had won the Karate Section of Japanese National Martial Arts Championships, he was distraught that he had not reached his original goal to train in the mountains for three years, so he went into solitude again, this time on Mt. Kiyosumi in Chiba Prefecture, Japan and he trained there for 18 months.

Founds Kyokushin

In 1953 Oyama opened his own karate dojo, named Oyama Dojo, in Tokyo but continued to travel around Japan and the world giving martial arts demonstrations, including the fighting and killing of live bulls with his bare hands. His dojo was first located outside in an empty lot but eventually moved into a ballet school in 1956. Oyama's own curriculum soon developed a reputation as a tough, intense, hard hitting but practical style which was finally named Kyokushin in a ceremony 1957. He also developed a reputation for being 'rough' with his students, often injuring them during training sessions. As the reputation of the dojo grew students were attracted to come to train there from in and outside Japan and the number of students grew. Many of the eventual senior leaders of today's various Kyokushin based organisations began training in the style during this time. In 1964 Oyama moved the dojo into the building that would from then on serve as the Kyokushin home dojo and world headquarters. In connection with this he also formally founded the 'International Karate Organization Kyokushin kaikan' (commonly abbreviated to IKO or IKOK) to organise the many schools that were by then teaching the kyokushin style. In the same year, his dojo received a challenge from Muay Thai (Thai Boxing). Oyama, believing that no other style was comparable to his, accepted the challenge and sent three students (Kenji Kurosaki, Tadashi Nakamura, Noboru Ōsawa) to Thailand who won 2 of the 3 fights, thus redeeming the reputation of his karate style.

After formally establishing Kyokushin-kai, Oyama directed the organization through a period of expansion. Oyama and his staff of hand-picked instructors displayed great ability in marketing the style and gaining new members. Oyama would choose an instructor to open a dojo in another town or city in Japan. The instructor would move to that town and usually demonstrate his karate skills in public places, such as at the civic gymnasium, the local police gym (where many judo students would practice), a local park, or conduct martial arts demonstrations at local festivals or school events. In this way, the instructor would soon gain a few students for his new dojo. After that, word of mouth would spread through the local area until the dojo had a dedicated core of students. Oyama also sent instructors to other countries such as the United States of America, Netherlands, England, Australia and Brazil to spread Kyokushin in the same way. Oyama also promoted Kyokushin by holding The All-Japan Full Contact Karate Open Championships every year and World Full Contact Karate Open Champtionships once every four years in which anyone could enter from any style.

Prominent students

Public demonstrations

Oyama tested himself in a kumite, a progression of fights, each lasting two minutes, and each after the featured participant wins. Oyama devised the 100-man kumite which he went on to complete 3 times in a row over the course of 3 days.[2]

He was also known for fighting bulls bare-handed. In his lifetime, he battled 52 bulls, three of which were purportedly killed instantly with one strike, earning him the nickname of "Godhand".[3] The legitimacy of these claims is disputed. One of Oyama's students, Jon Bluming, said "The story about Oyama fighting bulls is not true, he never met a real bull, for he never visited Spain. I also doubt that he was gored, for he never told me about it, and he used to tell me everything. Kenji Kurosaki was there, and he told me what happened. They went early in the morning to a stockyard in [the town of] Tateyama. Workmen prepared a fat old ox for Oyama by hitting one of its horns with a hammer so that it was quite loose. Oyama did not kill the ox, he only knocked off the loose horn. Bill Backhus and I saw the 16mm movie in 1959. Oyama himself showed it to us. I told Oyama to never show this film in Europe because it looked too phony, and everyone would laugh at him. As far as I know, nobody saw that movie again." Furthermore, Oyama himself has admitted that the oxen were old.[4]

Oyama also had many matches with professional wrestlers during his travels through the United States. Oyama said in the 1958 edition of his book What Is Karate that he had just three matches with professional wrestlers plus thirty exhibitions and nine television appearances. EJMAS notes that "As all matches between American professional wrestlers of the 1950s must be considered fixed, that leaves Oyama with 33 exhibitions, nine television appearances, and some steer wrestling to his credit."

Later years

Later in his life, Oyama suffered from osteoarthritis. Despite his illness, he never gave up training. He was holding demonstrations of his karate, breaking objects.


Final years

Before dying, Oyama built his Tokyo-based International Karate Organization, Kyokushinkai, into one of the world's foremost martial arts associations, with branches in more than 120 countries boasting over 10 million registered members. In Japan, books were written by and about him, feature-length films splashed his colorful life across the big screen, and comic books recounted his many adventures.

Oyama died at the age of 70, on April 26, 1994, of lung cancer. He was a non-smoker.[5]


A manga about Oyama's legacy, Karate Baka Ichidai (literal title:"A Karate-Crazy Life") was published in Weekly Shonen Magazine in 1971, the manga was written by Ikki Kajiwara while the art was done by Jirō Tsunoda and Jōya Kagemaru. A 47 episode anime adaptation was released in 1973, the anime had several changes in the plot and for some reason replaced Mas Oyama with a fictional character named Ken Asuka as the main character. However the anime, although some of its plot was different from the manga was still inspired by Oyama's legacy like in the manga.

Oyama was played by Japanese actor Sonny Chiba in the martial arts film trilogy based on the manga (Ikki Kajiwara, Jirō Tsunoda and Jōya Kagemaru were credited as original creators) Champion of Death (1975), Karate Bearfighter (1975), and Karate for Life (1977). Oyama also appears in the first two films.

Oyama's life story is also portrayed in the 2004 South Korean film Fighter in the Wind or Baramui Fighter.

SNK video games character from King Of Fighters and Art Of Fighting series of games, Takuma Sakazaki (AKA Mr. Karate), was inspired by Mas Oyama. Takuma Sakazaki is the founder and grandmaster for the fictional Kyokugenryu Karate, which is heavily based on Mas Oyama's Kyokushin Karate.

Grappler Baki manga character Doppo Orochi is a master karateka based on Mas Oyama, founding his own school of Karate, Shinshinkai; the other most known Keisuke Itagaki's work, Garouden, features a mighty character, Shozan Matsuo, who's apparently again inspired by Oyama.