IKA News - April / May 2011

Condolences for Japan

The IKA would like to send our heartfelt condolences for all our friends, relatives, and members of our karate family that have lost love ones and/or homes and businesses in Japan as a result of the Earthquake and Tsunami. We would also like to commend the gallant crew at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant that is sacrificing their lives for the safety of others. They are true heroes. We encourage IKA members to contribute to one of the many charities being set up to assist the victims of this great tragedy. We commend the Japanese people for their demonstration of support for one another. May their actions be an example for the entire world as to how we should conduct ourselves in trying times.

Soke T. Kubota



Kubotan Instructors

Soke with the latest group of certified Kubotan instructors
March 2011.


On March 27th, Soke certified five new Kubotan instructors. Two are current police officers from Monrovia, one defense tactics instructor, and two firearms instructors from Bakersfield. Soke was assisted by Sensei Alfanso Espinosa and Shihan Rod Kuratomi.



Sensei Judy Marx of our Carmel, California dojo promoted two students to the rank of Shodan. Congratulations to Jacob Swanson and Carl Chase who passed their Shodan test under a testing panel from IKA Headquarters that included, Shihan Boban Petkovic, Shihan Antonio Antonetti, Sensei Demetrio Munoz, and Sensei Fenik Shagozian. The test culminated in a celebration party that was enjoyed by all. Congratulations Jacob and Carl!

Editors Note: Sensei Judy Marx is currently one of the highest ranking female instructors in the IKA who was recently promoted to Godan. Keep up the great work. Osu!



Soke is happy to announce his return to one of his favorite cities; Sumy, in the country of Ukraine. The multi day event will include seminars, Dan testing, and tournament and is scheduled for May 12th-15th, 2011. It will be hosted by long time IKA supporter, Shihan Dai Anatoliy Lozovoy and will be sponsored by Ukrrosmetall Corporation and Kancho Grigoriy Kirik

For more information contact Shihan Dai Lozovoy at his email at:




On June 25-26, 2011, Kancho Okuyama will be hosting a World Kubota Cup in Toronto Canada. Saturday June 25th will be a day of seminars taught by Soke Kubota followed by the tournament on Sunday, June 26th.  If you are interested, contact Kancho Okuyama at his email at:


Or check the website at:



This message  from Kancho Okuyama:

We are excited about the 16th World Kubota Cup and having the Honor of Soke Kubota coming to Canada.
As you are aware, you will need a VISA for your team to COMPETE in Canada. Please send your Organization's name, Coaches name as well as ALL of the full names of your competitors including age AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

We will have a letter from an Official Referee of the CANADIAN OLYMPIC COMMITTEE to write a invitation letter for you as well as Programs to show your officials to allow entry to Canada.

We urge you to send all of the above soon so that entry into Canada and Visa preparation will be acceptable.

Best Regards,
Kancho T. Okuyama
IKA Canada


Soke Kubotan

Kubotan in Action ! – March 2011



Mark your calendar for the next IKA All Star Tournament to be held in Los Angeles at Occidental College on Sunday, October 2nd, 2011. The tournament usually runs from 9 am to 4 pm. Registration starts at 7:30 am sharp.  This tournament has been steadily growing over the past several years with many international competitors.

The tournament offers a reduced rate for entering the kata and kumite event and is one of the best values in tournament competition. Soke Kubota changes the medals every year with a new unique design that he creates himself. As always, there are a wide range of categories including Kobudo, and Gosoku Ryu kata. There are no team events.

The scoring system for this event will be a three point system (Shobu Sanbon) with all scoring techniques worth one point.

As always, it is imperative that we have volunteer support which is necessary for the success of this event. We ask that all IKA members in attendance plan on assisting with the event in some manner. We need judges and referees. We can train you how to be a time keeper or scorekeeper if you have no experience.

We hope to have registration forms available on the website, two months before the event at:


See you in October!



On Sunday August 21st, 2011, the annual Nikkei games tournament will be held at the Pyramid at Cal State University Long Beach. It is the aim of the tournament to hold an event free from politics in the spirit of true karate and Budo. It is organized by a group of Southern California Senseis and is supported by IKA and Soke Kubota. The So Cal Dojos have united in the common cause to promote karate in for those that may not be able to afford to compete in a mainstream tournament. The tournament is unique in that it is a karate, kendo, and judo tournament, all under one roof at the same time. Spectators are able to see all three events taking place simultaneously.

The tournament is designed to foster good will among the martial arts community and is a sponsored event. Cost for registration is only $25 for pre-registration and $35 for registration the day of the event. This includes a free Nikkei games T-shirt for all competitors. The entry fee is a fixed cost and does not vary regardless of the number events you are registered for. Cost for spectators is free.


Volunteers are critical for the continued success of this tournament. Last year, volunteers for the event were in short supply. If you can assist in any way, your help will be greatly appreciated. We need people to judge, time keep, score keep, and to help set up and clean up after the event. Any assistance of any kind will be greatly appreciated.  For additional information and registration information, you can contact  Shihan Rod Kuratomi at:


Take a look at our website that has flyers, registration forms and general  information. The  website is:




Soke and Shihan Rod Kuratomi are planning on travelling to New Zealand to teach a multi-day seminar near the city of Wellington. The dates are October 25th to 30th, 2011. Some of the seminars will be privately held for the Wellington students but at least one seminar will be open to the public. For more information, contact our host, Sensei Scott MacKenzie at his email at:




Soke is currently seeking a venue for the IKA 2012 World Tournament. If you are interested in hosting this event, please contact Soke at his email at:




Soke is happy to announce that on April 27-29th, 2012 he will be teaching a seminar and attending a tournament in Minsk, Belarus. The host will be long time IKA supporter and instructor, Shihan Dai Andrei Vedernikov. This trip is being made due to the tireless support of the IKA for close to three decades by Shihan Dai Andrei. For more information, the host can be reached at his email at:



Soke Brick Blast

Soke “Brick-Blasting” for Pro-Wrestlers
-Tokyo 1961



Check out the new, updated IKA Headquarters website. It has a new look and feel. Be sure to check out the new photo gallery. It takes a minute to load but is worth the wait. Special thanks to IKA student and webmaster, Brian McEvoy that volunteered to update the website and IKA Store. Thanks Brian !



Look for Soke on Facebook. The name is:
IKA Karate Kubota. Soke will be using Facebook for posting photos of his travels and other happenings.



The IKA has a new membership policy for our affiliated dojos. It has come to our attention that many of the dojos have not been submitting their annual IKA membership fees in a timely manner. As the IKA has very high overhead costs with these costs rising annually, we must now implement some financial changes.

In the past, we have adjusted costs according to the financial status of the respective countries with some paying more and some paying less annually. Our goal has always been to make membership in the IKA affordable for everyone.  We have decided to lower our fees and make the fees standard  and affordable for all countries.

Effective and due immediately, the club (dojo) membership fees will be $100 USD per year. In the past, it was optional to make your students members. Effective this year, we are asking that all students become IKA members.  Students, contact your Sensei directly regarding your membership fees. If you are not part of an IKA affiliated dojo, you may contact IKA headquarters directly. Dojos, contact us directly for specifics regarding individual memberships for your students. This continues to be the absolute most inexpensive International  membership with many organizations charging upwards of $100 per student and over $1000 per year  in club fees.  For the IKA, money has never been important. Training and Karate-Do has always come first. However, the IKA cannot continue to exist without prompt and timely payment of fees by affiliates and students.

Senseis, a membership card will be issued for each student so please submit a list of names of the students and we will mail you a membership card for each student good until January 2012.

The timely and voluntary payment of fees is an important part of Reigi (traditional martial protocol).  It is considered disrespectful and dishonorable if we have to remind you to pay your fees.  PLEASE do not put us in the awkward position of having to send you reminder letters.

If due to financial hardship you are not able to submit your fees in a timely matter, please contact us directly to see if we can make special financial arrangements for you. We will work out an affordable payment plan for you. Your continued membership is the most important thing to us, not the money.

If you have already paid your fees recently, then we will pro-rate your fees for the year. For example, if you paid your $100 fee in June of 2010 then you only need to pay fees for half of 2011 or $50. The membership fee for students  may also be pro-rated. It is our goal to put everyone on the same payment schedule payable in the first quarter of each year.

Payment may be made by credit card via paypal direct to Soke@ikakarate.com,  faxing us an order with your credit card number (fax: 1-818-246-0063), personal or company check (USA only), bank to bank electronic transfer, or  Western Union. If you wish to pay using Pay Pal, you can do so at the IKA website. Contact us for specific instructions on bank to bank electronic transfer if you choose this option.


IKA Administration



The Masters Forum is dedicated to increasing the knowledge base of the IKA Family. Each month we will try to cover a new
topic on a multitude of facets of the art, dealing with all levels of expertise. This month we have reprinted (with permission) a blog from Kyoshi Jim Mather who is one of Soke’s early students. He discusses some interesting history about Soke as he talks about the first Martial Arts Living Treasure Recipient: Soke Kubota:


First Living Martial Arts Treasure Recipient

I was asked to discuss our USNKA Living Martial Arts Treasure Award recipients and why they were selected. I'll occasionally post stories about each, starting here with our first.


Soke With James Caan

Soke Tak Kubota (right) and student, actor James Caan.

Soke Takayuki Kubota, 10th Dan, was the first to receive our award. I first met Soke at Ed Parker’s 1965 International Karate Championships in Long Beach. A few months later, I hosted the United States Karate Winter-National Championships in San Jose. He drove up with John Gelhsen and demonstrated (along with Bruce Lee), as he had at Parker’s. I soon began training with him at his LA IKA dojo (flying down on my one day off and returning that night). I consider myself his student to this day. He is one of our greatest fighting tacticians, has a great sense of humor, and is very down to earth.

Raised in Kyushu, the southern-most of the old Japanese islands (not counting Okinawa) during World War II, he began training at just four to defend his homeland. He said they didn’t train for form or physical fitness. They trained only to fight for their lives barehanded on the beaches – as there were no weapons or ammunition left at this point in the war. He describes the training as being “real kill karate”. So at this young age, he and the others trained with deadly seriousness each day, including punching the makiwara 500 times per day and kicking a bag filled with sand an equal number.

Japan was devastated from the constant bombings. So when an American bomber crash landed, the local people rushed out to vent their anger on the American crew, intending to lynch them. But Soke’s father, Denjiro, intervened. He made his neighbors take the crew to his small factory, where he locked them in a storage room. Three times each day, Soke would take the crew food prepared by his mother, Semo. After the war ended, the crew returned to thank his family for saving their lives and caring for them. They would return on occasion and bring Soke gum and candy and tell him about life in America.

Many Japanese were literally starving to death at the time. So, at thirteen, Soke made the difficult decision to move to Tokyo to find work and ease financial pressure on his family. But Tokyo was filled with people with the same goal. He was forced to eat out of garbage cans and sleep in the park until a police sergeant took him in, in return for him teaching the sergeant taiho jitsu, police defensive and restraining techniques. (Soke’s father had been a high ranking expert in the art and teacher to the Kumamoto police department.) In Tokyo, he trained directly under Gichin Funakoshi, and then 10th Dan Kanken Toyama, direct student of legendary grandmasters Itosu and Higashionna. An article appeared in Black Belt Magazine about Soke’s work as a bodyguard for the American Ambassador to Japan. It also documented an event that occurred while he was working with the Tokyo police, in which he broke up a prison riot single handedly. I once asked him how he was able to stop so many people by himself. He basically said he had messed up the first guy so badly that no one wanted to be number two.

Like me, karateka Harvey Eubanks, training lieutenant for Los Angeles Police Department, read the article and arranged for Soke to come to the United States in 1965 to train their training personnel. They also helped get him the necessary papers to remain here. So, while training LAPD and the FBI, Soke opened a dojo here and taught his Gosoku (Hard and Fast) Ryu style of karate. Since then, he has trained some of this country’s top competitors. Tonny Tulleners and John Gehlsen were selected to represent the United States at the first WUKO World Karate Championships, held in Tokyo in 1970. There were no weight or belt divisions. Tulleners placed third in kumite, while Gehlsen received the Tamashii Award. Tulleners, Gehlsen, and George Byrd were selected to the U.S. team for the 2nd championships, held in Paris in 1972. Val Mijailovic and Boban Petkovic have represented the U.S. very admirably in many championships over the years. (Chuck Norris also trained with Soke to learn hand techniques. Another big-name American martial artist wanted to train with him too but had such a bad attitude Soke refused him.)

I was fortunate to be allowed to study with many of the world's top martial artists over the years. But had I not, Soke Kubota would have been far more than enough.

Editor’s Note: We thank Kiyoshi Mather for allowing us to share some of his writing with the IKA World.



 “Competitions are about medals and winning, life is about not losing, this is the philosophy of real karate”

- Onaga Yoshimitsu, 8th dan Shorin Ryu



Each seek perfection of character.
Develop morals, ethics and distinguishable attributes.

Each be faithful.
Be loyal and devoted to a person, cause, or idea.

Each endeavor.
Have conscientious or concerted effort toward an end with an earnest attempt.

Each respect others.
To feel or show deferential value, honor, appreciation and regard for another.

Each refrain from violent behavior.
To hold oneself back from responding with inappropriate anger and physical force.


List of IKA Headquarters Staff and Instructors
President and Founder Soke Takayuki Kubota
Soke Dai James Caan
Vice-President Thea Kubota
Chief Advisor Leonard Kramer
Office Manager Carmen Kim
Senior Technical Advisors Val Mijailovic, Boban Petkovic
Technical Director Rod Kuratomi
National Coach and Advisor Ted Bratakos
Secretary Judy Rao
Liason, Special Projects Sara Kubota
Medical Advisor Dr. Ashok Rao, M.D.
Webmaster Brian McEvoy
Official Photographer Lee Fisher
Soke Takayuki Kubota 10th dan Master
Hank Hamilton 7th dan     Shihan
Paul McCaul 7th dan     Shihan
Val Mijailovic 7th dan     Shihan
Boban Petkovic 7th dan     Shihan
Mike Berger 6th dan     Shihan
Ted Bratakos 6th dan     Shihan
Mark Grigorian 6th dan     Shihan
Tatsuo Hirano 6th dan     Shihan
Leonard Kramer 6th dan    
Rod Kuratomi 6th dan     Shihan
George Sinani 6th dan     Shihan
Antonio Antonetti 5th dan     Shihan
Norvell Carrere 5th dan     Shihan
Mark Gujda 5th dan     Shihan
Judy Marx 5th dan     Shihan Dai
Marcial Soto 5th dan     Shihan
Sami Asmar 4th dan     Shihan Dai
Victor Chico 4th dan     Shihan Dai
Danny Kahan 4th dan     Shihan Dai
Demetrio Munoz 4th dan     Shihan Dai
David Petrie 4th dan     Shihan Dai
Stuart Richman 4th dan     Shihan Dai
Kirk Stites 4th dan     Shihan Dai
David White 4th dan    
Alfanso Espinosa 3rd dan     Sensei
Aman Ikram 3rd dan     Sensei
Anthony Boosalis 2nd dan     Sensei
George Lopez 2nd dan     Sensei
Judy Rao 2nd dan     Sensei
Patrick Reddy 2nd dan     Sensei
Roy Simmons 2nd dan     Sensei
Jennifer Allen 1st dan      Shidoin
Maureen DeGuzman 1st dan      Shidoin
Richard Martrosian 1st dan      Shidoin


The average training time for the Shihan (Master) level instructor is 30+ years of training and teaching. Each Shihan not only teaches but trains as well in order to maintain their status. Title is not automatically bestowed with rank. Soke also has several other master level instructors in Kubojitsu , Kobudo and IPT (International Police Training). Shihan Dai is a Deputy Master level instructor with an average of 20-30 years of training and teaching. Titles are reserved only for instructors that are ACTIVELY teaching at IKA Headquarters. Dan ranks are retained but titles can be changed as Soke sees fit.


We welcome any contributions you may have that you wish to have published subject to approval by Soke. Submit the articles to Soke in writing or e-mail them to him at:


It has come to Soke Kubota’s attention that some organizations around the world may be using IKA’s name and trademarks without permission. The name ”International Karate Association, Inc.” (IKA) and its registered trademarks may be used by affiliated organizations only after first receiving Soke’s written permission.   In addition, Soke’s hand written signature or the red Japanese signature stamp must not be used without his expressed permission. The red stamp is like a legal signature in Japan and is a symbol of authenticity. It should not be used by anybody except for Soke or for purposes that he authorizes. The “International Karate Association” name must not be used by itself to represent your organization. There is only one International Karate Association, Inc. and it is at Headquarters in Glendale, California, USA. After receiving approval from Soke, you may use the IKA name, but it must be attached with another description to differentiate it from the IKA Headquarters.  For example, if you are from the state of Nebraska, you could use the name, “International Karate Association of Nebraska” or something similar.


Please note that proper protocol (Reigi) requires that information matters directly relating to IKA Headquarters, IKA tournaments, karate training and seminars must be communicated to Soke Kubota first before contacting other members within the organization. It is improper for Soke to be the last person to be informed of matters that directly involve him and IKA Headquarters such as, for example, your intention to attend his tournament or invitations to tournaments that are addressed directly to a Headquarters student without Soke’s knowledge. It is proper respect in both of these cases to inform Soke first or at the same time that the student is contacted.   Thank you for your consideration in these matters. 


Due to increased liability risks, it is necessary that all IKA schools carry some form of liability insurance to protect the school from legal issues that may arise from accidents. The amount of liability insurance will depend on your location. USA schools are suggested to carry one-million dollars of liability insurance.


Feb 2011 - Mar 2011 News Letter

Nov 2010 - Jan 2011 News Letter

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