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DANZAN RYU DOJO

The founder of Danzan Ryu Jujitsu was Henry Seishiro Okazaki.  He was born in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan on January 28, 1890.  He immigrated to Hawaii in 1906 at the age of 16.  He was afflicted with a pulmonary condition believed to be Tuberculosis.  He was told to not over exert himself physically.  Instead he began his martial arts training. His first instructor was Yoshimatsu Tanaka who taught him Yoshin-ryu Jujitsu in Hilo, Hawaii.

 

The training, strenuous workouts, falls, battering, and Lomi Lomi (massage) he received had strengthened his body. In Okazaki's own words, he had developed a," body of Iron".  Okazaki found that his health improved and later went into total remission. He also studied Hawaiian Lua, Okinawan karate, Philippine knife play and, from Master Wo Chong, Kung Fu. However, his main proficiency was in Yoshin-ryu.

 

In 1924, Okazaki returned to Japan and spent a little less than a year studying various schools of the then most popular Jujutsu styles of Yoshin-ryu, Namba-Shoshin Ryu, Iwaga Ryu, Kosogabe Ryu, Kodokan Judo, and several others. Later that year when he returned to the Hawaiian Islands, he continued his study of jujutsu under the various masters who had emigrated from Japan to Hawaii. Incorporating not only traditional jujutsu, but also Hawaiian Lua, Okinawan Karate, Eskrima, Kung Fu, and wrestling, he began to synthesize the most effective aspects of these various styles into a new system which he called Danzan Ryu.

 

Danzan-Ryū (檀山流, "Sandalwood Mountain System" which was a Chinese name for Hawaii).

 

In December of 1948, Okazaki suffered a stroke that left him partially Paralyzed. He suffered a second stroke in 1950. At 4PM July 12, 1951, Henry S. Okazaki died from the effects of a third stroke.