This is the very building that Sosai Mas Oyama established as the “International Karate Organization Kyokushinkaikan So-Honbu” or Headquarters in 1964. It was here that the Sosai personally trained scores of people, not only those from within Japan, but as well as those from abroad who went to train under his tutelage. Such was the fame of Sosai’s Kyokushin Karate. Those from abroad were commonly known as “uchi-deshi” or “live-in student”, where they would stay in Honbu and train.
Some of the students were then selected by Sosai to open branches, called Dojo, which literally means training hall, all over Japan, while others were instructed to introduce Kyokushin Karate outside of Japan. Most students who were from abroad upon returning to their motherland, they too started their own Dojo. Kyokushinkaikan soon became an organization with over 120 international branches in every continent and most part of the globe. This phenomenon was never replicated by any other style of karate.
After the passing of Sosai in 1994, many other “honbu(s)” have sprung up, with each claiming to be the rightful successor. Although the techniques taught by these “honbu(s)” were as directed by Sosai, this does not make them legitimate in any form. There was only one place which Sosai established as Honbu, and the historic Honbu still stands at the same address:
3-3-9 Nishi-ikebukuro, Toshima-ku, Tokyo 171-0021 JAPAN
So-Honbu still conducts training as instructed by Sosai, and the man chiefly responsible in preserving the legacy of Sosai’s Kyokushin Karate is Chief-Instructor, Shihan Yoshikazu Suzuki 鈴木 義和. Honbu’s Honorary Committee Chairman is Shihan Susumu Miyake 三宅 進. The position of Technical Director is held by Shihan Cameron Quinn.
If you are curious with regards to your Shihan / Sensei(‘s ) connection with Sosai’s So-Honbu, or happen to be visiting Tokyo, Japan and would like to experience training at the very place where Sosai himself instructed, you may contact So-Honbu at:
Telephone: +1-202-555-0142 or Email email@example.com