The Chinese language encyclopaedia pages regarding Miyagi Chojun suggest that he went to China in 1915 to meet 'Shi Gong' (Xei Chongxiang) and other gongfu masters because Higaonna Kanyro was still in regular communication with them! Assuming this communication was by the written word (although it could have been by word of mouth), then there should be a written record somewhere in China even if all the replies were destroyed in 1945 in Okinawa! Furthermore, and more to the point, Miyagi Chojun was probably the first visitor to Xie Chongxiang from Okinawa since Higaonna Kanryo left in 1881 - so here is our answer to some extent! Miyagi Chojun probably conveyed all the history he knew of Higaonna Kanryo's earlier visit and education in China - to any and all the Chinese Masters he met - thus spreading the knowledge! Modern Okinawan Goju Ryu Karate-Do is comprised of the following Chinese martial arts styles and systems:
a) Fujian White Crane Fist (福建白鶴拳 - Fu Jian Bai He Quan) - which originated in Yongchun County.
b) Southern Shaolin Fist (南少林拳 - Nan Shao Lin Quan) - probably Quanzhou, but also the sister temples of Putian and Fuqing. based upon Pan Yu Ba's 'Eighteen Arahant Fist' (羅漢拳 - Luo Han Quan).
c) Whooping Crane Fist (鳴鶴拳 - Ming He Quan). From (and between) 1912-1915 with the arrival of Wu Xiangui (Go Ken Ki) on the scene! I suspect Wu Xiangui introduced Miyagi Chojun to 'Whooping Crane' in Okinawa - but then took him to see his Master (Xie Chongxiang) in 1915 as a representative of Higaonna Kanryo (as Higaonna Kanryo was too ill to travel).
I think the outer frame of Goju Ryu is obviously Southern Fist - which looks very 'Northern' in part and perhaps this is the origination of the wide and broad Horse Stance (which looks just like our Longfist Forms)! The 'inner' frame of Goju Ryo is Fujian White Crane - which has a crossover with such arts as Taijiquan, Xingyi, Xinyi and Baguazhang, etc! The maintaining of 'tension' was taught to me as 'steel wire' in English but I later found out the proper Chinese term is '缠丝劲' (Chan Si Jin) - or 'winding silk unyielding force'. This is taught within Taijiquan and all authentic forms of White Crane. The power is relentless, endless, self-propelling and self-replicating. It is not dependent upon physical fitness (although it is acquired only after a life time of relentless mind-body training without mercy) and is not negated or diverted by physical conditions. It is a universal force that operates regardless of life or death. My Master used to say that it is like a heavy iron ball rolling in all and any directions! Nothing can stop it. The secret lies in the Kata construction of Goju Ryu which is as follows:
Fujian White Crane Fist and Southern Fist Forms (Katas) brought back from Fuzhou - China (c. 1881):
碎破 (Sui Po) = Saifa
制引战 (Zhi Yin Zhan) = Seiyunchin
四向战 (Si Xiang Zhan) = Shisochin
三十六手 (San Shi Liu Shou) = Sanseru
十八手 (Shi Ba Shou) = Seipai
久留顿破 (Jiu Liu Dun Po) = Kururunfa
十三手 (Shi San Shou) = Seisan
一百零八手 (Yi Bai Ling Ba Shou) = Suparinpei
三战等 (San Zhan) = Sanchin
Whooping Crane Form (Kata) brought back from Fuzhou - China (1915)
六机手 (Liu Ju Shou) = Rokuki - later developed into 'Tensho' (转掌 - Zhan Zhuan). Wang Xiangui came to Okinawa in 1912 (where he lived until his death in 1940) - he was sent to assist Higaonna Kanryo by Xie Chongxiang (Higaonna Kanryo died in 1915). Became Miyagi Chojun's teacher and accompanied him to and from China in 1915.
Miyagi Chojun - Constructed Kata (1937)
In 1937, when Japan declared war on China, Miyagi Chojun is employed as a High School Sport Instructor and tasked with teaching Goju Ryu Karate-Do to High School Students destined to be recruited into the Imperial Japanese Army. Goju Ryu training proved too difficult in its traditional form for short-term students passing through limited-time classes - so Miyagi Chojun carefully constructed two Basic Katas that convey a sound appreciation of self-defence:
击碎第一 (Ji Sui Di Yi) = Gekisai Dai-Ichi*
击碎第二 (Ji Sui Di Er) = Gekisai Dai-Ni*
Within these two Katas - Miyagi Chojun introduced the concept of the '上段扬受' (Shang Duan Yang Shou) - or 'Jo Dan Age Uke' in Okinawan. This is a highly technical term that translates as 'Upper Level Raising Interception' - and which today is universally known by its English translation of 'Upper Block'. (This upper 'blocking' technique involves the coordinated crossing, rubbing and inter-changing of the toughened fore-arms (with closed fists) in front of the chest area as each is alternatively raised above the forehead (whilst defending the middle and upper levels) - with the intention of deflecting a downward descending blow directed to the top of the head - or diverting a straight punch or similar strike to the face, etc. Today, the exact angle of the raised block with the closed hand varies according to the preference of the Karate-Do style). According to Chinese language sources, this 'Upper Block' did not exist in the Karate-Do styles extant upon the island of Okinawa prior to 1937 - and that Miyagi Chojun is recognised as the sole originator of this technique as practiced within the art of Karate-Do. Prior to this, the Naha-Te - Goju Ryu style utilised a typical White Crane defence that saw an elevated mid-level defence raised up to neck and head height - where the palm and fingers of the open hands would deflect (or slap) blows away to the side. Miyagi Chojun may have seen similar upper blocking movements whilst observing other Chinese styles of martial arts (where these movements are often a combination of a closed handed punch and a fore-arm deflection) - different Chinese martial styles that had not yet penetrated Okinawa or the Karate-Do community!