Okinawan-born Hanshi Gichin Funakoshi 10th Dan (1868-1957) renowned as the creator of Shotokan Karate, which he introduced to Japan in 1922. His philosophy was to ensure karate was an effective form of self-defence which developed character through diligent practice.
Hanshi Hirokazu Kanazawa 10th Dan (1939-2019) is regarded as the most legendary Shotokan karate-ka the world has ever seen. He was awarded his 1st Dan by Hanshi Gichin Funakoshi 10th Dan and was one of the first international instructors of the Japan Karate Association (JKA). He was the JKA’s first Grand Champion (1st in Kata and Kumite) in 1958.
Hanshi Mick Randall MBE 10th Dan (1944-2020) began his karate training in 1963, one of the first in Britain. In 1978, he was graded to 4th Dan by Hanshi Hirokazu Kanazawa 10th Dan, making him one of the most senior British and European instructors. His focus was on traditional, rather than competition-orientated, Shotokan karate.
SHOTO's Unique Heritage & Qualifications
- Founded in 1996 by Hanshi Mick Randall MBE 10th Dan, a pioneer of British Karate.
- Direct and short lineage: Hanshi Gichin Funakoshi 10th Dan to Hanshi Hirokazu Kanazawa 10th Dan to Hanshi Mick Randall MBE 10th Dan.
- Chief Instructor & Head of Association: Hanshi John Blain 8th Dan.
- 20+ highly ranked Instructors 3rd to 8th level Black Belts.
- More than 420 years’ combined karate experience.
- In pursuit of traditional Shotokan karate, structured progression with the 3 Ks: Kihon (the basic techniques), Kata (pre-arranged forms), and Kumite (sparring).
- Not-for-profit karate classes and tuition.
- Affiliation to the English Karate Federation (EKF).
- Child Protection Policy & Association Child Protection Officer.
- DBS-checked and insured instructors.
- EKF-compliant COVID policy in place.
- Adults’ and Children's karate classes, beginner karate classes, self defence classes.
- Karate clubs located in and around North London, and Southern England.
- Friendly, welcoming and inclusive, with all training held in a positive atmosphere.
- Learn self-defence.
- Increased fitness, muscle tone, balance, mobility, flexibility, co-ordination & reflexes.
- Improved health: higher vitality, cardiovascular performance by total body workout, reduced stress.
- Improved mental health: self esteem and confidence; perseverance, mental toughness, discipline, improved memory and concentration.
- Relating positively to others: showing respect and humility without being subservient.