#thankskarate project Yasunari Ishimi spreads Karate in Spain 石美保成先生 インタビュー
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#thankskarate project Yasunari Ishimi spreads Karate in Spain 石美保成先生 インタビュー

January 23, 2020

I teach Karate as a part of Japanese Culture in Spain. These people come from all over Europe. They are mostly Karate teachers. I go teach Karate in Hungary, Switzerland, Belgium, Portugal, Ivory Coast, Argentina, Scotland and Italy every year. I’m out of Spain every twice a month. Once in 3 month I go teach National Team of France. That girl is a member of National Team. She is a chosen one and very strong. I’m 76, practice Karate, Tai Chi and Qigong. Martial Arts is fun. My brain improves. There are about 7000 moves in 80 Katas. I can do this smoothly. Isn’t that amazing? When I was in elementary school, there were students from Okinawa. They were exercising something. I was wondering what they were doing. And that was Karate. Older ones were teaching kids for health. I joined and watched how they do that. In high school, there was a dojo in Osaka. I learned “Fushin-ryu”. In University, Tsujikawa sensei was my instructor who was taught by Kenwa Mabuni sensei of Shito-ryu. Elders of my University instigated me that I had good sense or something. Back then, there were campus troubles and many classes were canceled. My plan was to go to Europe for a year, take exam, stay in University and hopefully become and Archaeologist or research History to make a living. I got on a Russian ship from Yokohama to Nakhodka then took a train all the way to Spain. I joined student dormitory when I arrived in Spain. There was a Judo dojo near dormitory. I was asked to come when I have free time. A Judo teacher said “ If you teach me Karate, you can use dojo when there is no class.” So I taught Karate as I was going to university. Karate dojo was rare back then, so I started teaching at one dojo, and then, the other teachers of Judo dojo asked me to teach and so and so. Once I was teaching at 6 or 7 dojos. Before I made this dojo here. In 1970, a friend told me to create a dojo and I did. I was planning to go back to Japan before I become 32 or 33. I wanted to become a teacher of Karate that I loved. I practiced and practiced. I went back to Japan 2 or 3 times a year in Japan. Okinawa, about 10 times. It was all like a continuing chance by chance. When I took the 6 dan test by Japan Karatedo Federation, I decided to dedicate my life to Karate. I was attracted by the personality who had a character and I that was it. It wasn’t about the skill or anything else. I was lucky. I knew I wasn’t for a corporate company. I was wondering how to make a living. I never thought I was going to teach Karate in Spain and have income and make a living here. I practiced so hard until age of 53 when I found cancer. Cancer opened me to Tai Chi and Qigong. I understood more about Karate and my ability increased. I’m 76 and I can move like young people. I have no regrets if I can do this for another 10 years. I now know that Karate is a culture. If I can share the goodness of Japan and Japanese through Karate, I am more than delighted.

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