The Japanese word Oko translates as European Tiger (O = Europe, Ko = Tiger) and is the generic term for all practitioners of Heki Ryu Bishu Chikurin ha in Europe. The name was given in the early 90s by Kanjuro Shibata XX, Sendai Sensei. At that time there were relatively few scattered students in Europe. Larger groups existed at that time in Vienna, Bern and Bonn. Until the year 2016 all dojos (= practice groups) of our school were Tiger groups (group name and -ko). Kanjuro Shibata XXI, Sensei also introduced the dragon tradition (Ryu) in 2016 with the dojo Soryu.
On June 5, 2002 - meanwhile, there were a number of dojos in various cities that had received names from Sendai Sensei and were organized as independent associations - representatives of these dojos met near Marburg and decided to join together in an umbrella organization.
This is called Oko Kyudo umbrella association e.V. and is a non-profit association under German law. In this most of the European Dojos are united, which have received a name from Sendai Sensei or Kanjuro Shibata XXI, Sensei and are organized as a club.
For all dojos that are not organized as an association and therefore can not be a member of the umbrella organization and as a substitute for the many individual scattered in different countries living practitioners was founded in parallel, the association Oko Kyudojo eV, in which these practitioners can become a member and his turn as Association is member of the umbrella organization.
The central task of the umbrella organization is to promote and disseminate the kyudo of Heki Ryu Bishu Chikurin ha in Europe. This means in practice u.a. promote communication between individual dojos and coordinate dojo-wide activities. The umbrella organization coordinates and organizes the visits of Kanjuro Shibata XXI, Sensei and other experienced students and organizes the annual program in Dechen-Chöling (Buddhist center near Limoges, France). In addition, he supports local dojos in their construction. This can be done in the form of subsidies for the construction of a dojo (practice place) or, more frequently, the support with material: Yumis (Japanese bows), Yas (arrows) and Kakes (gloves).