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I have a question.

In almost every pic, especially at the higher levels, the Gyoji has his left hand clenched into a fist that hides the thumb. The thumb is always tucked under the fingers.

Why is this?

As far as I've heard and observed, that's what they're taught to do from Day 1 of gyoji training.

Orion

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I have a question.

In almost every pic, especially at the higher levels, the Gyoji has his left hand clenched into a fist that hides the thumb. The thumb is always tucked under the fingers.

Why is this?

As far as I've heard and observed, that's what they're taught to do from Day 1 of gyoji training.

Orion

Yes, I have no doubt that this is probably the case,as even the most junior Gyoji do this, but is it symbolic of something? Is this something the Shinto Priests do? Is there some historic or ritualistic significance?

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Twice a year, Sandanme and lower ranking gyoji attend sessions to practice sumoji (or sumomoji), the particular style of writing kanji in sumo, which can be seen on the banzuke, gomenfuda, kaobure gonjo sheets etc.

Gyoji01.jpg

'Yama' and 'Gawa', two of the most common sumo kanji. These are templates prepared for the younger gyoji to practice from.

Gyoji02_Template.jpg

Some completed works.

Gyoji03.jpg

The newest gyoji, Kimura Soichiro, who entered sumo in September last year.

Gyoji04_Kimura_Soichiro.jpg

Kimura Yasutaka.

Gyoji05_Kimura_Yasutaka.jpg

Kimura Kintaro.

Gyoji06_Kimura_Kintaro.jpg

Shikimori Kazuto.

Gyoji07_Shikimori_Kazuto.jpg

Kimura Hidemasa.

Gyoji08_Kimura_Hidemasa.jpg

Kimura Masatoshi.

Gyoji09_Kimura_Masatoshi.jpg

Kimura Fujinosuke gets some pointers from Juryo gyoji Kimura Kichijiro, one of the instructors.

Gyoji10_Kichijiro_Fujinosuke.jpg

Kimura Kazuma.

Gyoji11_Kimura_Kazuma.jpg

And here Kazuma gets advice from Makuuchi gyoji Kimura Motoki.

Gyoji12_Motoki_Kazuma.jpg

Shikimori Shiho.

Gyoji13_Shikimori_Shiho.jpg

Kimura Shoichi.

Gyoji14_Kimura_Shoichi.jpg

Shikimori Kinosuke.

Gyoji15_Shikimori_Kinosuke.jpg

Shikimori Tomokazu.

Gyoji16_Shikimori_Tomokazu.jpg

Kimura Takanosuke.

Gyoji17_Kimura_Takanosuke.jpg

Kimura Satoshi.

Gyoji18_Kimura_Satoshi.jpg

Shikimori Masahiro.

Gyoji19_Shikimori_Masahiro.jpg

Kimura Satoshi receiving guidance from Juryo gyoji Kimura Asanosuke.

Gyoji20_Satoshi_Asanosuke.jpg

Kimura Takanosuke receiving guidance from Makushita gyoji Kimura Ryosuke.

Gyoji21_Takanosuke_Ryosuke.jpg

And Kimura Satoshi gets back to work.

Gyoji22.jpg

Edited by Yubinhaad
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Part two of gyoji training sees some senior gyoji arrive to review and correct the work of the younger ones.

Gyoji23.jpg

Kimura Keinosuke corrects the work of Shikimori Masahiro. Keinosuke is the current chief writer of the official honbasho banzuke and therefore an expert at sumo calligraphy; his predecessor in that role was the 36th Kimura Shonosuke.

Gyoji24_Keinosuke_Masahiro.jpg

Kimura Motoki shows how it should be done. Watching him are Kimuras Toyohiko, Soichiro, Yasutaka and Takanosuke.

Gyoji25_Kimura_Motoki.jpg

Shikimori Yodayu corrects the work of Kimura Hidemasa.

Gyoji26_Hidemasa_Yodayu.jpg

Shikimori Kindayu writes out an example for Kimura Masatoshi.

Gyoji27_Kindayu_Masatoshi.jpg

Kimura Akijiro does the same for Kimura Satoshi.

Gyoji28_Akijiro_Satoshi.jpg

Kimura Konosuke assesses the work of Kimura Kazuma.

Gyoji29_Konosuke_Kazuma.jpg

Everyone pays attention as Konosuke reviews their work.

Gyoji30.jpg

A practice banzuke written by Kimura Takanosuke. (I meant to edit this one so it was vertical but I forgot, sorry.)

Gyoji31_Takanosuke.jpg

The most senior gyoji of them all, Kimura Shonosuke, concludes these training sessions with a speech.

Gyoji32_Shonosuke.jpg

It will take a long time, but some of these men should become Kimura Shonosuke in the future.

Gyoji33.jpg

Meanwhile, Shikimori Inosuke talks with a supplier about some new outfits.

Gyoji34_Inosuke.jpg

Oh, and an example of the gyoji's work, the gomenfuda for the Natsu basho which has been prepared in advance.

Gomenfuda_2014_Natsu.jpg

Edited by Yubinhaad
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Like in February, there is no jungyo to keep the sumo world busy this month, so the gyoji from the lower three divisions have again been practising their sumoji writing skills. Some pictures here from the two days of training - a new recruit appears on the second day.

The first day of training was on June 2nd.

Sumoji01_Jun14.jpg

One of the instructors, Makuuchi gyoji Shikimori Yodayu, writes an example for Kimura Kintaro to practice.

Sumoji02_Shiki_Yodayu_Kim_Kintaro.jpg

Kimura Yasutaka practising the basic shikona characters 'Yama' and 'Gawa'.

Sumoji03_Yasutaka_Yama_Gawa.jpg

After getting the individual characters right, the gyoji move on to writing full shikona, like Kimura Masatoshi writing Chiyootori.

Sumoji04_Masatoshi_Chiyootori.jpg

Kimura Kazuma writing Endo.

Sumoji05_Kazuma_Endo.jpg

Kimura Fujinosuke writing Tochiozan.

Sumoji06_Fujinosuke_Tochiozan.jpg

Some of the gyoji are now practising writing out kaobure gonjo sheets, which are presented on the dohyo during a basho and show the following day's Makuuchi torikumi.

Sumoji07.jpg

Shikimori Shiho.

Sumoji08_Shiki_Shiho.jpg

Kimura Takanosuke (left) and Shikimori Kinosuke.

Sumoji09_Takanosuke_Fujinosuke.jpg

Kimura Satoshi perfecting his 'Yama' writing.

Sumoji10_Satoshi.jpg

Now some pictures from the second day of training, June 4th.

Sumoji11_Day_2.jpg

Nearest the camera here is the latest recruit to the gyoji ranks, Kimura Koki of Musashigawa-beya.

Sumoji12_Kimura_Koki.jpg

Kimura Hideaki gives some advice to Kimura Yasutaka.

Sumoji13_Hideaki_Yasutaka.jpg

Makuuchi gyoji Kimura Motoki writes out some examples, watched by Kimura Toyohiko and Kimura Fujinosuke.

Sumoji14_Toyohiko_Motoki_Fujinosuke.jpg

Kimura Hidemasa practising the first kanji of Kisenosato's shikona.

Sumoji15_Hidemasa_Kisenosato.jpg

Instructors Kimura Chishu and Kimura Kenjiro keep an eye on their students.

Sumoji16_Chishu_Kenjiro.jpg

Shikimori Tomokazu working on more kaobure gonjo sheets.

Sumoji17_Tomokazu_kaobure.jpg

Kimura Kenjiro offers some guidance.

Sumoji18_Kenjiro.jpg

Kimura Shoichi writing out Gagamaru's shikona.

Sumoji19_Shoichi_Gagamaru.jpg

Kimura Satoshi is writing out the yado bira, jungyo lodging banners, which are hung outside the various accommodations during each stop of a jungyo.

Sumoji20_Satoshi.jpg

A completed yado bira. It displays the shikona of the rikishi who will be staying at that particular lodging.

Sumoji21_Yado_bira.jpg

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I think the gyoji and yobidashi should have to walk around in daily life in traditional Japanese garb just like the rikishi do. It's only fair.

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Kimura Kazuma writing Endo.

Guess they expect they'll need that one for a while longer... ;-)
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The present 37th Kimura Shonosuke turns 65 during the Haru basho and retires after it.
His class mates from his hometown Rokunohe-machi in Aomori presented this tate-gyoji Shonosuke attire to him, which he plans to wear on senshuraku, day 15.
http://www.daily-tohoku.co.jp/news/kita_ar/20150306/201503050P059643.html
201503050P059644.-.-.CI0002_size0.jpg

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The Kyokai has announced three gyoji promotions which will take effect on April 27th:

Kimura Shotaro > to Sanyaku

Kimura Yonosuke > to Makuuchi

Kimura Chishu > to Juryo

Kimura Yonosuke is the understudy and eventual successor to chief writer of the banzuke Kimura Keinosuke.

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I25: Dewanoumi, born 1928.12.15, hatsudohyo 1938.05, retired 1993.11

Wait! Borin in 1928 retired in 1993 that makes him 65 but! if he made his dohyo debut in 1938 may and born in in december 1928 dosent that mean.....

9 YEAR OLD GYOJI!!!!!

Edited by Rufakiyama

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9 YEAR OLD GYOJI!!!!!

Yes, it does. Just some decades ago child labour was pretty common. And you have to remember that it probably wasn't seen as child labour at all but more or less a cheap way to feed the kid. (Well, in exchange for "some" gyoji duties.) Often enough have sons been sent to Ozumo as the family was too poor to feed them.

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I don't have exact figures, but I believe compulsory education wasn't a requirement until well after WWII.

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I don't have exact figures, but I believe compulsory education wasn't a requirement until well after WWII.

Yes, 1972. There was a 12-year-old rikishi (who turned into a sekitori) as late as 1971, and to take the most famous example, Kitanoumi was only 13 when he debuted in 1967.
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There will be two new gyoji making their debut in the Natsu basho, both 15 years old.

The Haru basho saw the debut of the first rikishi born in the year 2000, and Isegahama-beya's Shikimori Seiichiro (式守 正一郎) has the same distinction for the gyoji.

Joining him will be Shikihide-beya's Kimura Sakuranosuke (木村 桜乃助), who has the impressive first name Shonosuke, albeit with different kanji (将之介) to the actual tate gyoji name.

Yes, 1972. There was a 12-year-old rikishi (who turned into a sekitori) as late as 1971, and to take the most famous example, Kitanoumi was only 13 when he debuted in 1967.

Kitanoumi.jpg

(Spooky TV program...)

Edited by Yubinhaad
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There will be two new gyoji making their debut in the Natsu basho, both 15 years old.

Joining him will be Shikihide-beya's Kimura Sakuranosuke (木村 桜乃助), who has the impressive first name Shonosuke, albeit with different kanji (将之介) to the actual tate gyoji name.

he has a twitter account: https://twitter.com/sumoshono0729

I don't know if he's using the Kimura Sakuranosuke name on it already since January

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he has a twitter account: https://twitter.com/sumoshono0729

I don't know if he's using the Kimura Sakuranosuke name on it already since January

There are Google cache pages of individual tweets as late as 9th March where the name on the account was still しょーの.
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There will be two new gyoji making their debut in the Natsu basho, both 15 years old.

The Haru basho saw the debut of the first rikishi born in the year 2000, and Isegahama-beya's Shikimori Seiichiro (式守 正一郎) has the same distinction for the gyoji.

Joining him will be Shikihide-beya's Kimura Sakuranosuke (木村 桜乃助), who has the impressive first name Shonosuke, albeit with different kanji (将之介) to the actual tate gyoji name.

Yes, 1972. There was a 12-year-old rikishi (who turned into a sekitori) as late as 1971, and to take the most famous example, Kitanoumi was only 13 when he debuted in 1967.

Kitanoumi.jpg

(Spooky TV program...)

Boy even at 13 he looked scary.

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Does anyone who loves all things sumo followed the naming conventions of gyoji? As I said, it would appear that they start having set family name second name titles passed down from juryo-ish. I only say this from what I saw of the picture captions above? Is this indeed the case, or are there a lot of exceptions, or some unwritten rule or? I find it all quite interesting which is why I ask.

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At last a Kimura Takuya - same name and kanji as Kimutaku from SMAP.

17 years old Moriyama Takuya started on the 1st this month in Chiganoura-beya.

The oyakata: "He's Kimura Takuya by chance: our Dewanoumi-ichimon gyoji always become Kimura. When he gets promoted he'll surely change from Takuya."

http://www.sponichi.co.jp/sports/news/2015/06/04/kiji/K20150604010472640.html

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And one more set of urakata training pictures - this time, the young gyoji have been practising their sumoji writing skills in the gyoji-beya again. Akinomaki already reported the arrival of Kimura Takuya above; the Kyokai introduces him and another new gyoji in the pictures.

For this session the gyoji are facing each other in two rows, rather than working at separate tables as we've seen before.

Gyoji01.jpg

Instructor Kimura Satoshi keeps an eye on the work of Shikimori Seisuke, who joined Miyagino-beya at the start of June. He is now the youngest gyoji in the ranks, being three weeks younger than Shikimori Seiichiro.

Gyoji02_Seisuke_Satoshi.jpg

And as reported above the other newcomer is Chiganoura-beya's Kimura Takuya, seen here. At 182cm he will be among the taller gyoji.

Gyoji03_Kimura_Takuya.jpg

In their first year, young gyoji work on basic characters such as 'yama' and 'gawa'. Shikimori Seiichiro and Kimura Sakuranosuke, who joined before the Natsu basho, are also doing that. [2]

Gyoji04_Shikimori_Seiichiro.jpg

Gyoji05_Kimura_Sakuranosuke.jpg

As they become more experienced they move on to other, more complicated regular shikona components, such as 'hana', 'umi', 'ryu' and 'nishiki'. Kimura Haruhiko in this one.

Gyoji06_Kimura_Haruhiko.jpg

Kimura Soichiro.

Gyoji07_Kimura_Soichiro.jpg

Kimura Yasutaka.

Gyoji08_Kimura_Yasutaka.jpg

Kimura Kintaro.

Gyoji09_Kimura_Kintaro.jpg

Kimura Masatoshi.

Gyoji10_Kimura_Masatoshi.jpg

Some examples of such kanji.

Gyoji11.jpg

Other gyoji are practising the kaobure sheets, displayed on the dohyo during the naka-iri to announce the following day's torikumi. Kimura Shoichi in this one.

Gyoji12_Kimura_Shoichi.jpg

Shikimori Shiho.

Gyoji13_Shikimori_Shiho.jpg

Shikimori Kinosuke.

Gyoji14_Shikimori_Kinosuke.jpg

Kimura Kazuma.

Gyoji15_Kimura_Kazuma.jpg

Kimura Toyohiko.

Gyoji16_Kimura_Toyohiko.jpg

Shikimori Kazuki is working on some yado bira, the lodging banners which are displayed at the various accommodations for each stop of a jungyo.

Gyoji17_Shikimori_Kazuki.jpg

Shikimori Tomokazu is also working on those, perhaps for the first time, with advice from Kimura Takao.

Gyoji18_Takao_Tomokazu.jpg

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At 182cm I'm surprised he didn't try to do sumo as a rikishi.

A gyoji has a much longer and safer career.

Orion

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