Higaonna Shihan on Makoto Gima.

Gima Shihan throwing Higuchi Sensei, with Yaridama! One of the Funakoshi Nagewaza!

Gima Shinkin Sensei (By IOGKF Higaonna Morio Shihan).

From a letter from Higuchi Ikuo Shihan, I was made aware of the 23rd memorial service for Gima sensei, and I remembered the times of the Yoyogi Shūrenkai Dōjō 40 years ago.

Realizing that 23 years have gone since the passing of Gima sensei, I felt that time passes fast. Gima sensei was a martial expert as well as an educator. It can be said that he was a Bushi who had mastered the way of the pen and the sword.

I believe that Gima sensei’s achievements in promoting karate in mainland Japan are great. 

On the invitation of Kanō Jingorō sensei, he performed a karate kata demonstration along with Funakoshi Gichin sensei at the Judō headquarters Kōdōkan. This was a great opportunity (effort) for the popularization and development of karate. 

I think I met Gima sensei for the first time in the 1960s through the Yoyogi Shūrenkai at the banquet hall on the second floor of the Nagasaki Hanten restaurant. After that, at the request of Aragaki sensei (*), I think he taught three times a week (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday) at the Yoyogi Shūrenkai Dōjō. I believe that Higuchi Ikuo Shihan instructed as an assistant on behalf of Gima sensei.

Gima sensei retired from the education world, worked for Kashima Construction Co., Ltd. and instructed at the karate club of the said construction company.

I have seen demonstrations of Gima sensei with Higuchi Shihan at the All Japan Karatedō Championships at the Nippon Budōkan in Tōkyō. The throwing techniques were so splendid that I still have them in mind.

It can be said that ordinarily, Gima sensei was a calm and quiet person. I have been impressed by Gima sensei knowledge on the history of Okinawan karate, especially about people and their birthdates etc.

Once, Gima sensei taught me a kata of bō (stick) that he had learned it from Gigō, the 3rd son of Funakoshi Gichin sensei. I was especially impressed and can’t forget the extreme power of his way of striking with the bō. 

The dōjō-kun were also teachings from Gima sensei. Regardless of style, all those who trained at the Yoyogi Shūrenkai Dōjō were touched by his virtues and so he is alive in everyone’s heart.

I would like to devote myself to the gratitude of the teacher as a treasure of my life. I would like to persevere engraving in my heart the kindness of Gima sensei as a treasure of life. 

The Gima-ha Shōtōkan style has been passed on to the fine martial artist that is Higuchi Ikuo sensei to whom I extend my deepest homage. 

To Gima sensei, I extend my heartfelt gratitude. 

Joining hands in prayer.

Notes:(*) The owner or the Yoyogi Shūrenkai Dōjō.