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Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

At 8th-dan Nobuko Oshiro is the highest ranked woman in Okinawa. On Friday, I photographed her at her dojo in Urasoe.

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

At 68 she is strong and healthly, kicking high and punching hard. In a country where women are sometimes seen as decorative “office flowers” Oshiro sensei is breaking down boundaries and shattering ceilings. The phrase “you hit like a girl” is not going to be uttered in her dojo as anything other than a compliment.

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

Photographed with the Pentax 645Z and 90mm lens. Lit with a single Profoto pro-head in a white softlight reflector powered by a 7a generator.

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

Nobuko Oshiro, Kyoshi, 8th dan Okinawa Karate-do Shorinryu, Taishinkan Association

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