The Beginning of Music Hands

The idea of Music Hands started 20 years ago with a competition to showcase the art of kyoku-de in Japanese, which literally translates to bending (kyoku) hands (de). Kyoku-de was more recently coined “music hands” by Shindo Spirit founder, Dr. Kaneko and stands for the various tapping styles of hands on the neck, shoulder, and back. After winning second place he had a dream of having a similar event for kids to showcase their version of Music Hands.

Dr. Kaneko was inspired to incorporate music hands into a Japanese story, the Princess Bamboo and the Music Hands Man,  and also created a DVD called Music Hands & Monkey Business , in both of which he shares his message of peace, joy and family unity which has been a long time focus in his practice.

The Event

This led to the creation of an ongoing event called Music Hands Day to promote his message of creating better bonds between children and their parents. This is an event that parents and children under 12 can enjoy. The teachings and story of both the book and DVD will be presented for families in the community and scheduled every full moon, which is the time, according to our story, that monkeys come out to play. This event will occur sometime in September. This tournament lands on Respect for the Aged Day in Japan and is planned to occur only once a year to emphasize the importance of respecting the elderly.

The Fun

The Music Hands Day events will share Japanese culture, storytelling with the themes of peace and family unity, showcase “music hands” and “monkey business” demos and competition, and offer cultural activities like learning about haikus, origami, painting, and other arts and crafts.


“Music hands” and “monkey business”, which is monkey-like play and laughter, will be demonstrated from the DVD. Then those kids who’d like to compete in the “music hands” and “monkey business” competitions with their parents get a chance to win prizes. Families that aren’t able to make it in person are able to send in video of their performances for a chance to win!

To view a preview of Music Hands and Monkey Business, click here. To learn more about our Music Hands 4 Kids Campaign, click here.


Come monkey around with the family and make music with your hands!


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