Karate is a martial art developed in the Ryukyu Kingdom. Karate is now predominantly a striking art using punching, kicking, knee strikes, elbow strikes and open-hand techniques such as knife-hands, spear-hands and palm-heel strikes. The Ryukyu Kingdom was annexed by Japan in 1879. The martial arts movies of the 1960s and 1970s greatly increased the popularity of martial arts. Web Japan (sponsored by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs) claims there are 50 million karate practitioners worldwide, while the World Karate Federation claims there are 100 million practitioners around the world.