Kusunku (or Kung Siang Chin)
Kusunku was a Chinese military advisor who came from China to Okinawa at the request of Okinawa’s king. He lived in Okinawa from 1756-1761. He was a master of Kempo.
‘Satunushi’ ‘Tode’ Sakugawa (1733-1815)
Sakugawa was a student of Takahara and the Okinawan teacher of Soken Matsumura. Takahara suggested that his student, Sakugawa go to train with Kusunku. Sakagawa formulated the ‘Kusanku’ kata to honour his teacher (Kusunku) and record his teachings after his death.
Sokon “Bushi” Matsumura (1796-1893)
Sokon was aStudent of Sakugawa and teacher of Itosu. Matsumura taught Itosu the kata Kusunku (later known as Kanku-dai) among others.
Yatsutsune “Ankoh” Itosu (1830-1915)
A student of Sokon Matsumura’s, Itosu created the ‘Sho’ (lesser) version of Kusanku (possibly to counter the then popular use of a bo staff in combat).
Gichen Funakoshi (1868-1957)
Funakishifounded Shotokan karate (incorporating ‘Kusunku’ but changed the name to ‘Kanku’). Funakoshi adopted both the ‘Dai’ (greater) and ‘Sho’ (lesser) version of the Kanku kata into his style, although modified the cat stances into back stances.
While many styles incorporate Kanku-sho, GKR derives it’s from Shotokan karate.