Takayuki Kubota - One of the few grand masters still alive, cultivating samurai traditions in the contemporary world, owner of the highest rank in karate: 10 Dan.
Born in 1934 in Kumamoto (Japan). Aged 4, he began to train ju-jutsu and karate under the instruction of his father, Denjiro. He studied many Japanese hand-to-hand and sword combat types, but what prevailed was karate training, which he seemed to be greatly gifted for. His talent can be measured by the fact that he started teaching karate at the age of 14, and at the age of 17 he had his own dojo in Tokyo and was a hand-to-hand combat police consultant.
In 1964 he arrived in the USA, where he still teaches karate in the Headquarters of the International Karate Association, founded in 1953 in Japan, headed by master Kubota and uniting karate students from all around the world from different karate styles, especially Gosoku-ryu and Shotokan. Master Kubota developed Shotokan techniques basing on Goju-ryu defences and stable Shito-ryu stances creating his own dynamic Go-soku style (go - toughness, soku - speed). Hence his title - Soke (master and the style's founder). FBI and the American police, as well as Hollywood are making use of his talents. He acted, trained actors, devised fighting sequences in over 300 films, co-operating with such Hollywood stars as: Yul Brenner, Charles Bronson, James Caan, Michael Douglas, Sean Connery, Christopher Lambert. It is James Caan who is one of the most faithful Soke's students, an expert in cane-fighting and honorary president of the International Karate Association.
Soke devised new weapons, recognised by the American law as serving self-defence purposes: kubotan and kubotai. He developed the techniques of police PR24 cane and tonfa fighting. He is the author of many books and instruction films. You can read about him in the Internet, and his name appears in nine different places in the encyclopaedia of all martial arts published in the USA. Soke Takayuki Kubota is a master of the following martial arts: karate, toshin-ryu, taiho-jutsu, kubo-jutsu, shindo-tsuye-jutsu, kubotan, kubotai, kubokido, aikido, judo. He has his own website, which you are welcome to visit: http://www.ikakarate.com
Master Okuyama is the Head of the International Karate Association and has the Kancho title.
He began to train in Japan at the age of 7. In line with the family tradition, he practised sumo and judo. At the aged of 13 he started to learn karate from master Kinjo from Okinawa. In 1960 he started to study at the Takushoku University, which became famous all around the world because of training the best Shotokan karate instructors. He studied political science and foreign trade, regularly training karate with masters: Tabata, Hamanaka and Tsuyama. In 1966 he arrived in the USA to continue his studies and started to train under the instruction of master Takayuki Kubota. Having recognised him as the greatest of the encountered karate masters he remains faithful to him up to this day. In 1970 he moved to Canada, where he is the most important person in the Gosoku-ryu and Shotokan karate fighters environment. In 1992 master Kubota awarded him with the kancho title and 8 dan degree in karate. Apart from his karate activity, Kancho Takemasa Okuyama is a well-known businessman - president of Hachi-O-Zan Ltd. and an artist who occupies himself with traditional painting and playing the Japanese flute.