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Shoot-Fighting

Shooto Tiger

Sensei Yorinaga Nakamura

My first visit to the world famous Inosanto Academy of Martial Arts was over a decade ago.

I went there mainly to witness a demonstration featuring a new and exotic discipline called, “Shoot-wrestling” or “Shooto”, which was being formally introduced to the United States from Japan by a very impressive artist I’d read about named, Yorinaga Nakamura.

I was in awe the moment I finally stepped foot inside the Academy!

There was an amazing energy in there that made the hair on the back of my neck start to tingle... hard to describe.

I noticed there were rows of many folding chairs surrounding a boxing ring set up in the center of the place. I looked for a good seat. While sitting down, adrenalin almost launched me up out of my seat again, when I suddenly noticed there was some of Bruce Lee’s own personal training gear displayed along a rear wall…Wow!

Being there at last was almost a spiritual experience for me!

As I looked around at those assembled, I focused in on one of my heroes, Bruce Lee’s senior student and chief disciple Guro Dan Inosanto himself was seated right across from me! So, there he was in the flesh, a major icon for me to admire…the man!

When Yorinaga’s demonstration commenced, I had a good center ringside seat.

Mr. Nakamura was a fairly young but fully capable martial artist! He demonstrated superb techniques that flowed almost effortlessly from one transition in to another. He displayed numerous advanced and creative abilities bordering on becoming masterful!

Here was one of the best I’d ever seen!

I retained much of what I saw him do that afternoon. I still continue trying to develop what I was able to learn by watching Yorinaga so intently there.

I ran into Mr. Nakamura at the 2003 Bruce Lee Convention, while admiring the memorabilia on display from his private museum collection, and formally introduced myself to him. I thanked him sincerely for what I learned by watching him all those Year’s prior during what turned out to be one of his first visits to California.

After I mailed him copies of photos from our encounter there, he was nice enough to send me an excellent demonstration of his on video tape from a TV Show that originally aired on Japanese Television. I doubt that many people in the U.S. have ever seen it? Great stuff! I felt honored by his generosity!

Years later, during one of Sensei Yorinaga Nakamura’s visits to train his Western-Shooto students at the IAMA, I finally managed to take a day off from work to attend one of his fantastic afternoon training sessions!

I suggest you make arrangements to attend Yorinaga Shooto classes by logging onto www.inosanto.com, directly to verify his current schedule.

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