Kyoto Shimbun 2014.5.28 News
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"Japanese Sake Taiso" Devised by Doshisha University Students
Kyoto・Fushimi District Promotion

Calisthenics called "Japanese Sake Taiso," expressing how to make Japanese Sake, was devised by Doshisha University students. They were planning to promote the sake breweries of the Fushimi District. As they push forward with activities to spread it, the students said, "We hope that many people, including nondrinkers, use the exercise as a trigger to get familiar with Japanese Sake."

The "Japanese Sake Taiso" calisthenics move the whole body in a slow rhythm, accompanied by a song for which both the lyrics and music were written by the students themselves.

It starts with the process of "harvesting" expressed through lifting hands, which were lowered to their feet, above their heads. Then continues with the motion of opening and closing their palms as if they were distributing sake "koji" mold over steamed rice to the melody of "Osake no Moto wo Kome ni Kake." Furthermore, the process of squeezing sake tightly is expressed through the motion of twisting the body from side to side. It consists of a total of six motions. It ends with the shout, "Kanpai," or cheers.

It was invented by 17 students, who participated in a course titled "Kyoto-shi Fushimi-chiiki Kaseika Project," or a revitalization project for the Fushimi District in Kyoto City, held by Doshisha University. In order to widely share the Japanese Sake culture of the Fushimi District which is lined with sake breweries, they began to make original calisthenics that are fun for everyone.

They were advised on the exercise motions by a judo physiotherapist who conducts preventive care movement in Fushimi Ward. So far, the calisthenics had been performed at a business in the ward and were uploaded to the video-sharing website "YouTube" this month.

For this project, the students also took a sake brewery tour. They learned about the brewers’ laborious efforts, including that the master brewer doesn't eat other fermented food such as "Natto," or fermented soybeans, so as not to blend sake koji mold with other molds during sake making, and that the brewers complete sake while strictly supervising rice and water temperatures.

Kiyotaka Oe, a senior in the Faculty of Economics and project leader from Ibaraki City, Osaka Prefecture, said, "We felt the pride of sake making. We want to introduce the project at various places, and send it out in order to convey the attractiveness of sake."

(translated by Galileo, Inc.)

Photo= Students perform the motions of the "Japanese Sake Taiso" (Fushimi Ward, Kyoto City)

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