Grand Master Katsuoh Yamamoto is a 10th degree black belt and the Founder of Yoshukai Karate. He is the driving force behind the new World Yoshukai Karate Organization (WYKKO) along with Mr. Hiroaki Toyama (8th Degree Black belt), Mr. Mike Culbreth (7th Degree Black Belt), and all the instructors who have joined the organization. This is the first time Master Yamamoto has allowed a new Organization to be formed since Master Koda came to the United States in 1969. Master Yamamoto will be a very visible part of World Yoshukai and you can expect to see him in the United States more often.
Master Yamamoto began karate at the age of twelve working out with a friend and learning the basic skills of the art. At age 15 he began serious training in Chito-Ryu Karate, under Master Chitose the founder of Chito-Ryu and the former student of the famous Master Gichin Funakashi who began the Okinawan Karate, which is the forerunner of all Japanese styles of karate today.
He trained faithfully and at age 22 became the number one practitioner in Japan in 1960. He retired undefeated as the All Japan Karate Champion in 1961. At this time, he also achieved the position of Master. During the following year, he founded the first school of Yoshukai Karate which became recognized as a true Martial Art in 1963. The number of his students grew and as they became instructors, Yoshukai began to grow throughout the world including the United States. Master Yuki Koda arrived in the U.S. in 1969 and established U.S.Yoshukai Karate. The style soon became well known as the Actual Fighting Karate through special demonstrations throughout the world. These demostrations challenged the limits of human power. Mr. Yamamoto broke baseball bats, blocks of concrete and ice.
World Yoshukai Karate is recognized for extensive physical training, self-defense, self-control and respect for oneself and others. World Yoshukai students are noted for their perseverance, loyalty, dedication, respectful manners and strong hearts. Grand Master Yamamoto has founded an organization determined to provide quality instruction to anyone at any age.
Yoshukai Karate can trace its lineage back to the founding fathers of karate in Okinawa over three hundred years ago. The Japanese Grandmaster, Katsuo Yamamoto, began his formal training in the Chito-Ryu style under Dr. Chitose. In 1959, he opened his own school in Kitakyushu, Japan. From 1960 to 1963, Yamamoto was considered the top competitor in Japan. In 1963 Dr. Chitose pronounced him the Grandmaster of the Yoshukai style of karate.
We are proud that World Yoshukai Karate Kobudo Organization is the only karate association recognized and certified by Yoshukai founder Grandmaster Katsuo Yamamoto. The organization is led by Kaicho Hiroaki Toyama and Kaicho Mike Culbreth.
WYKKO now has more than 1,000 members in more than 30 branches throughout the United States, including Florida, Alabama, Texas, Georgia, California and North Carolina.
Greg Eckert’s Instructor
Shihan Taylor began karate in 1982 at the age of 10. By the age of 15 he had acquire his 2nd degree blackbelt and had become an assistant instructor. Halfway through his senior year in High School, Mr. Taylor was granted permission by U.S. Yoshukai director, Master Yuki Koda, to open his own dojo. At Age 27 he was given the title Shihan which means quality instructor, by the time he was 33 he had achieved his 5th degree black belt and was the youngest person in the U.S. to be awarded with the Madeira obi a special belt of high notability. Today Texas Yoshukai Karate has been open for 27 years, and last year Mr. Taylor and his students celebrated his 35th anniversary in the Martial Arts. This last January Mr. Taylor received an award from Shihan Hiroaki Toyama (8th Degree Black) & Shihan Mike Culbreth (7th Degree Black Belt), for his loyalty to Yoshukai Karate.