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Shotokan Karate is a unique combination of philosophical principles, combat techniques, and “built-in” strategies.

It is a 500-year-old system of weaponless self-defense that originated in China, made its way to Okinawa, and was transplanted and formalized in Japan during the early part of the twentieth century. The forefathers of Shotokan Karate developed a combat system that stemmed from real-time life or death fighting situations.

The wisdom and understanding of these civil combat traditions has been handed down to us over the years. The fighting skills passed on to us are realistic and designed for true-to- life combat and street self-defense situations.

Master Gichin Funakoshi, the founder of the Shotokan School, was the first to teach and organize Karate on the Japanese mainland in 1922. Karate or “empty hand” fighting was, before this time, passed on in secrecy from master to student on Okinawa Island.
Master Funakoshi is known as the father of modern day karate. (Check the S.K.A. brochure for more information).

Tsutomu Ohshima, who trained at the prestigious Waseda University and was captain of the karate club while there, was one of the last students of Master Funakoshi. Mr. Ohshima went on to found Shotokan Karate of America Inc. in 1955 assuming the role of Shihan (chief instructor).

This was the first karate organization ever formed in the United States.

The S.K.A. is now a worldwide organization with over 140 dojos (practice halls) and clubs in America alone.
Shotokan Karate of America is currently a nonprofit organization that is devoted to the protection, perpetuation, and advancement of the legacy of Shotokan Karate as a martial art.

The martial arts as a whole develop superior fighting skills and help cultivate many internal qualities that lead to a virtuous character and, therefore, a productive life. The knowledge acquired by way of vigorous karate practices will help the devotee in all areas of their life.

Shortly after joining Shotokan Karate of America, all new members receive a wide assortment of information from the S.K.A. designed to help them understand the organization in more detail.
Valley Shotokan also gives its new dojo members a packet of information explaining all important aspects and preconditions of training that are specific to the Valley Shotokan dojo.

Shotokan Karate of America supports itself, almost exclusively, by the annual dues collected in all S.K.A. dojos and clubs. Therefore, everyone at Valley Shotokan is required to pay association dues every year. Membership dues are $50.00 for the first year and $75.00 for the second year and each year thereafter. Membership in Shotokan Karate of America (S.K.A.) Is renewable every January. Valley Shotokan administers the first membership signing. The S.K.A., thereupon, manages other yearly payments directly.
Paying dojo and Association dues, are in fact, part of karate practice itself