Isshinryu Kata (Thru Chinto)


This workout took place 28 years ago (4/9/89).  What makes this very special, is that it features Master George Shin, one of my mentors, and by my reckoning, one of the finest Sensei and people I have ever met.  Also featured is my martial arts brother in spirit, Master Don Wasielewski.  Both of these gentlemen trace their histories back to the original Steve Armstrong Dojo in Tacoma, WA.  I had been a long time martial artist, friend and acquaintance to Sensei Armstrong, but had not studied Isshinryu until hooking us with Sensei Don in 1984.  We traded off styles, I worked with him on sticks and swords, and he mentored me in Isshinryu.  I eventually tested before Sensei Armstrong on February 20, 1988.  For a full account of that time, you can go to (

There aren't many videos from the period.  Back then, decent cameras cost over a thousand dollars, and tapes were expensive.  Most times, you'd use tapes for training and  would re-use them to save money.  In any event, what you're seeing here is in the aftermath of the Armstrong Dojo closing.  We were visiting the school of Sensei Terry Lee in South Tacoma (Parkland) and everything just sort of came together.  Don happened to have his camera in the trunk of his car and aside from the filming, what you're seeing is part of what might be categorized as a typical workout. We were very lucky to capture the moment, as I'm sure you'll agree.

These are the folks you see on the floor; and their respective ranks on that date:

George Shin - 7th Degree Black Belt - White Gi
Don Wasielewski - 7th Degree Black Belt - Blue Shirt
Terry Lee - 4th Degree Black Belt - Black T-shirt
Bill Mc Cabe - 2nd Degree Black Belt - Black Gi top
Dave Robinson - 1st Degree Black Belt - White Gi and moustache

Sensei Shin is in his mid 60's in the video, several years after an unfortunate heart attack.  His performance is remarkable, and typical for the man I know.  There can be no doubt as to his determination, his discipline, his skill, and his generosity as you view him throughout.  These qualities shape the man you see, and have always set him apart from others.  In his late 80's, Sensei Shin received a terminal cancer diagnosis.  As I understand it, the cancer had spread so pervasively within him, he had only a few months left.  He elected to forgoe last ditch treatment, went home, and returned to his normal schedule of working out and teaching, which he still does today (December 2017).  He is 92 years old ... the cancer is still there ... the doctors are baffled.

George Shin.  Living and proving the value of determination, discipline, skill, and generosity.

The Kata of Isshinryu (Seisan Thru Chinto)



Seisan (Side View)






Nihanchi (Side View)


Nihanchi (Repeat)




Wansu (Side View)




Chinto (Side View)


For additional ideas and concepts on Bo flow and technique, click here.  For additional information on Isshinryu drills, click here.  For insight into what recent research has turned up regarding the history and evolution of the Isshinryu forms, click here.

For Information Regarding Okinawan Tonfa  Click Here

The Kata of Isshinryu (Entire Video)
Time markers for quick viewing

Seisan 04:48;  05:54
Seiuchin  07:25
Naihanchi  10:16; 12:39; 13:15
Wansu  14:29; 15:42
Chinto  16:54; 18:06
Kusanku  19:16; 20:44; 51:58
Sunsu  22:24; 27:26
Sanchin  34:58; 36:34
Kusanku-Sai 38:13
Sai Chatan-Yara No Sai 40:17
Toko Meni No Kun No Dai 42:13; 43:10
Bo Shi Shi No Kun No Dai 44:07; 45:56
Urashi Bo 47:38; 49:03
Tonfa  50:31



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