Yasutsune Azato

Master Yasutsune Azato or Ankoh Azato as he is also known, was one of Gichin Funakoshi’s teachers. He was a master of Karate in Okinawa, and the son to one of the two highest classes of Okinawan societies, the Tonoshi.

Over time Azato had become the advisor to the Okinawan King in all military subjects and he was also the direct advisor to the king. Apart from being and expert in Karate, he was also an expert in Kendo, archery and horse riding.

It was believed that Yasutsune Azato kept a register of all martial artist on the island of Okinawa and in great detail, he listed all of their abilities and imperfections, by doing this, it gave him an advantage over everyone. It was said that Azato used the phase to Funakoshi, “know yourself and your enemy.” It is this phrase that stuck with Funakoshi, as he later added this as one of his twenty principals. Meaning, know want you are capable of, before knowing what your enemy can do.