On behalf of myself and the students of Kansai Karate Gold Coast we would like to congratulate Ishitobi Hanshi on receiving his 9th Dan Black Belt.

Ishitobi Kazuo Hanshi is Sensei Stephen Kelly’s personal karate instructor and has been for many years. I personally have had the pleasure of training under his instruction during his visits to Australia for well over 15 years. I have also had the previllage of training with him in Japan on several occassions.

Ishitobi Hanshi trained under the founder of Shukokai Karate – Tani Sensei, and was his last full time student and ran Tani Sensei’s dojo until his passing. He is currently the Vice President of the Shitoryu Shukokai Karate Do Union and International Liason for the Union based in Japan.

He has a wealth of knowledge on Shukokai Karate and has been travelling the world sharing his experience in addition to running his own dojo’s in Kobe and his broader commitments to karate in Japan.

A Dan Grade refers to the level or degree of Black Belt. In karate the black belt grading systems goes from a provisional black belt or Shodan Ho, then to 1st Dan or Shodan, all the way to the highest black belt 10th Dan or Judan.