I'll be your teacher at Kodokai Dojo.
I had the good fortune to study martial arts in the land where they were created, Okinawa, Japan.
Lessons took place everywhere- on beaches, busy sidewalks, small private 'hole-in-the-wall' dojo's and in castle ruins.
These experiences shaped my perception of what martial arts practice should be like.
I began my martial arts study in 1978 under Master Seikichi Odo in Agena, Okinawa. Odo was born in 1926 and his primary martial arts teachers were born in the 1800's. His karate and weaponry were highly respected on Okinawa and were a window into the old ways.
Starting as a white belt, I eventually received every promotion, in karate and weaponry, to my current rank of 8th degree black belt, directly from Master Odo.
Odo passed away in 2002 and I began to study a type of ju-jitsu called Motobu Udundi. I was eventually awarded 4th degree black belt from Taira Ryoshu, and, eight years later, 5th degree black belt from Takamiyagi Tetsuo.
My teachers wanted me to have a full, well-rounded understanding of martial arts, not just technical proficiency.
We frequently visited other martial arts masters and sometimes sat and chatted of history, philosophy and strategy through countless hours of unhurried coffee breaks. Tea ceremonies, memorial services, shrine visits and traditional dance were cultural activities deemed important to my teachers.
My teachers also travelled to Rhode Island to visit us (Takamiyagi sensei has come 6 times) and many of my students have travelled to Okinawa to experience this unique training.
Kimberly, taking a sword.
My teachers and some training pics from the last 40 years.
This extensive access to Okinawan masters is what separates Kodokai from other schools. My training and experience in the Marine Corps informs my interpretation of these old arts. I also have a B.A. in Anthropology and another in Communications which help me to better understand and accurately interpret these great cultural resources so that they are useful to you.
My wife, Kimberly, also teaches at Kodokai. Kimberly is ranked third degree black belt in karate and 4th degree in Motobu Udundi (awarded by Master Takamiyagi Tetsuo). Kim has an advanced degree in Education and is an invaluable resource to our students.
By choosing Kodokai, you'll experience a cultural treasure, develop reliable self-defense skills, and realize the many benefits that you won't get at a McDojo.
Thanks for taking a look!
U.S. Marine Corps- Security experience in the US, Europe, and Asia.
8th degree black belt- Okinawa Kenpo Kobujutsu under Seikichi Odo.
8th degree black belt in Shorin-ryu Karate under Toma Seiki.
5th degree black belt in Motobu Udundi (Palace Hand) under Ryoshu Taira and Tetsuo Takamiyagi.
US representative of the Gudokan Dojo, Koza, Okinawa.
A lifelong student with 40 years of helping people just like you!