Kagami Biraki 2001 Photo Portrait

By Christopher Caile

Many traditional Japanese martial arts organizations welcome the new year with a traditional celebration of renewal and spiritual rededication. Known as Kagami Biraki the tradition dates back to an old Samurai family practice that started in the 15th century. It was brought into modern budo by Jigoro Kano (founder of judo) in 1884. (see the related story: Kagami Biraki: Renewing the Spirit)

Today thousands of karate, judo, aikido and other Japanese martial art's dojos around the world carry on this tradition. On January 11 the World Seido Karate Organization's headquarters in New York celebrated its Kagami Biraki. Here are some photos showing the spirited workout that was followed by a lecture from Kaicho Tadashi Nakamura.