An updated reggae version of the iconic rajio taiso (ラジオ体操) radio calisthenics program that Japan’s national public broadcaster NHK began airing in 1951, seems to be quickly gaining popularity across Japan, particularly on social media.
Developed by Shuko Masubuchi, a 29-year-old film production company employee, who got into reggae dancing during his university days, this fun new version of rajio taiso has managed to breathe new life into this classic workout through the implementation of common reggae dance moves and an energetic remix of the original rajio taiso song.
Original Rajio Taiso
Although Masubuchi created this reggae dancehall version of rajio taiso roughly three years ago, and was even able to perform it in front of about 400 people at a reggae festival in Spain in 2015, it wasn’t until earlier this month that people in Japan really started taking notice of his interesting creation. The reason for this sudden change was Japanese actress, model and TV personality Maki Nishiyama, who talked about it on social media, saying things like “I wish this is what we would’ve done in elementary school” and “I want them to do this in school dance classes.” Now, with more and more people sharing videos of themselves doing this reggae workout on Japanese social media, it’s beginning to look like Shuko’s creation might just be the next big ‘dance’ trend in Japan.
Masubuchi told Asashi Shinbun that his creation was in part born out of a desire to have more people learn about reggae. When asked why
he thought so many people had responded positively to his workout, Masubuchi speculated that it was because it managed to change the original rajio taiso in a fun and interesting way. He also alluded to the somewhat boring nature of the original rajio taiso by admitting that he himself, couldn’t remember ever sincerely trying whenever he had to do the original rajio taiso in school, instead he would often try to find ways to make it more fun by fooling around.
Check out this “Reggae Dancehall Exercise” in the videos below. Both of these were shot in Spain during the reggae festival Masubuchi attended in 2015.