International Shotokan Karate Federation

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International Shotokan Karate Federation
Abbreviation ISKF
Formation year 1977
Legal status Federation
Official language
English
Website iskf.com

The International Shotokan Karate Federation (ISKF) is the largest shotokan karate organization in North and South America. In 1977, in an effort to spread the study of shotokan throughout the world, high-ranking members from the Japan Karate Association (JKA) founded the ISKF. In 2007, the ISKF split off from the JKA to become an independent organization. Members of the ISKF follow the teachings of shotokan's founder, Gichin Funakoshi. Though the ISKF is based mainly in the United States, affiliated dojos can be found in over forty countries worldwide. Hiroyoshi Okazaki is the chairman and chief instructor of the ISKF.

ISKF regional directors[edit]

Instructor Rank Region Regional headquarters' official site
Teruyuki Okazaki 10th dan East Coast Region Philadelphia Shotokan Karate Club
Hiroyoshi Okazaki 8th dan CHAIRMAN AND CHIEF INSTRUCTOR Philadelphia Shotokan Karate Club
Yutaka Yaguchi 9th dan Mountain States Region ISKF Mountain States
James Field 8th dan Southwest Region ISKF Santa Monica
Cathy Cline 8th dan Northwest Region Western Washington Shotokan Karate Club
Susan Jones 6th dan Alaska Region Alaska Shotokan Karate
Greer Golden/Martin Vaughan 6th/7th dan Mid-America Region ISKF Mid-America
Lee Doohen 6th dan North Central Region ISKF North Central
Chuck Coburn 7th dan Western Region ISKF Western
Kim Koo 5th dan South Atlantic Region ISKF South Atlantic
Leon Sill 8th dan Southern Region ISKF Southern

Testing[edit]

For all kyu (colored belt) tests, the candidate must demonstrate the mandated kata for their rank, karate basics, and sparring. Testing of a karateka is typically allowed every three months until 1st kyu is obtained. The minimum waiting period between 1st kyu and 1st dan is typically one year.

For dan (black belt) examinations, the candidate must travel to the regional headquarters or attend clinics given by certified examiners (such as national competitions). The candidate must demonstrate two katas, one of his or her choice and one chosen by the chief examiner. The candidate is also tested on free sparring, which is non-point (i.e. it does not stop when someone makes contact). Older candidates may also demonstrate self-defense techniques, in which they must defend themselves from a series of attacks from an instructor. Board-breaking is not generally tested, as it falls outside the purview of traditional karate.

Master camp[edit]

The ISKF runs an annual training retreat in Green Lane, Pennsylvania, which draws karate practitioners from all over the world. Guest instructors from outside of the ISKF are often invited to teach classes. Mandatory classes are held twice per day, optional training once per day, and a special instructor training class once per day. Dan (black belt) exams, examiner certification, and judge certification are also offered. The retreat generally concludes with a goodwill tournament.

Other camps are held outside the United States.

Collegiate karate[edit]

The ISKF is affiliated with the East Coast Collegiate Karate Union (ECCKU). Teruyuki Okazaki is the chairman and chief instructor; Dr. Paul Smith is the director. Dr. Smith runs a ISKF Collegiate Club at West Chester University. James Sim is the ECCKU coordinator. The ECCKU has 15 member-colleges, but any karateka in college may compete in tournaments.

Split with JKA[edit]

In June 2007, the ISKF ended its affiliation with the JKA due to a conflict over new rules that were declared at the 2007 JKA board of directors meeting.

On April 2, 2007, three of the founding members of the ISKF (Takashina, Koyama, and Takayuki Mikami) decided to remain with the JKA, forming JKA/WF Americas and the JKA American Federation (JKA/AF). However, a majority of the practitioners within the ISKF decided to remain with that organization rather than JKA, including Teruyuki Okazaki, one of the founders.

Mikami and Takashina have made individual statements about their decision to remain in the JKA. [1]

The ISKF made a formal statement regarding the break.[2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-10-07. Retrieved 2007-04-21. 
  2. ^ ISKF Members announce ending of affiliation with JKA