Nakazato Shugoro, Hanshi/ Judan, has continued the kata curriculum of his teachers, Chibana Chosen and Iju(Ishu) Seiichi. The kata are similar to those taught in the dojo of Nakazato's former peers Miyahira, Higa, Nakama and Kinjo, but have stylistic changes based on founder discretion for instructional methodology. Nakazato's kata curriculum consist of the Itosu/Chibana kata's Naihanchi, Pinan, Kusanku(sho/dai), Passai(sho/dai), Chinto and consists of foundational and developmental kihon and fukyu forms. The version of Gojushiho (54 steps) practiced in the Shorinkan is that of Nakazato's first teacher, Iju, who was a student of Shinpan Shiroma (although one report says that the kata came from Yabu Kentsu.) Chibana did not teach gojushiho but some of his students had learned a version of the kata from other sources hence the differences among the Chibana-lineage styles on Okinawa (Miyahira, Higa, Nakama, Nakazato). These are not to say that Chibana did not know Gojushiho or ever teach it but he did not make it a part of his kata syllabus. Chibana did not teach kobudo either but Murakami Katsumi remarked that he was quite skilled with the nunchaku.
It is said that Nakazato performs kata exactly as Chibana did and in his younger days, when many of Shorin-Ryu's top instructors went to Chibana for kata instruction and correction, it was Nakazato who trained them. Nakazato's kata is efficient in movement, speed and does not involve a great deal of long, deep stances, which is a distinguishing characteristic of Shorin systems. The kata are exciting to watch for those who understand what the bunkai is but are scoffed at by Japanese-style tournament fanatics who feel that the kata are not dynamic enough to win the prestigious plastic trophies or medals that make their systems such an "effective system of combat."
Nakazato's kobudo lineage is also very prestigious. Starting in 1935 under Tonaki Seiro, a student of Chinen Sanda, Nakazato studied tonfa, sai, nichokama, bo and nunchaku. After World War II, he received training under the great bojitsu master, Chinen Masami. Some of the bojitsu kata taught in the shorinkan are Shushi no Kun, Sakugawa no Kun, Sakugawa no Kun Dai Ni, and it is said that Tokumine no Kun was once also practiced. The last bo kata, Kubo No Kun, is shared with Ryuei-Ryu and Okinawan Kempo schools, possibly having been passed down from the Bushi Kuniyoshi Shinkichi, who spent his later years teaching villagers in Northern Okinawa his kobudo characteristics and interpretations.
The Sai kata, Nakaima no Sai Dai Ichi, Nakaima no Sai Dai Ni and Nakazato no Sai(sai dai san) are similar to Kuniyoshi style and are almost identical to those practiced in Ryuei-Ryu/Nakaima-Ryu). Sai Dai Ichi also contains many of the same movements and patterns in Towada no Sai as well as Kuniyoshi No Sai found in Okinawan Kempo groups, with slight differences within the form.
The kama kata are difficult to place as they resemble no familiar pattern or techniques from the codified kama forms.(Kanegawa, Tozan, Kuniyoshi) however Kama Dai ichi is referred to Nakaima no kama. It is likely that Nakazato created these after the influences of his instructors as well as the Nunchaku dai ichi, Shorinkan no Eku, and Shorinkan no Tonfa forms that bear his name or the kaiha's. . This is very common in Kobudo considering that for a very long time, there were no systemized kata. For instance, Taira Shiken was one of the first instructors actually to systemize or form curriculum for nunchaku-jitsu.
GRANDMASTER SHUGORO NAKAZATO