Kato Shihan was born on July 22nd 1943 in Kochi, Japan. He attended the world famous Takushoku University in Tokyo and trained under Sensei Tsuyama, Kanazawa and Urui. Sensei Kanazawa’s influence was very strong and he won a place on the JKA Instructors Course. Upon completion of the Instructors Course, Kato Shihan went to teach in Germany and in 1966 he was sent by the JKA to the UK.
Kato Shihan (Master) has now been resident in England and teaching karate throughout the world for more than 40 years during which time his loyalty was to the late World Chief Instructor for IJKA, Tetsuhiko Asai Shihan 9th Dan, until his sad passing in 2006.
Kato Shihan is the only person to have passed an 8th Dan grading under Asai Shihan, a testament to the technical complexity of Asai’s examinations and Kato Shihan’s awesome abilities as a true karate master.
At the 2007 IJKA congress meeting held in Budapest, Hungary, following one year of respect for Asai Shihan 9th Dan, Kato Shihan was asked to take over the mantel of IJKA World Chief Instructor.
In July 2013 Kato Shihan celebrated his 70th birthday but as the above photograph taken in early 2013 shows, age is no barrier, for a true karate master.
Whilst it was Asai Shihan’s unbelievable ability to demonstrate his style, it was and is Kato Shihan’s ability to interpret and teach, that has seen the organisation grow and gain popularity with the karate instructors who are still hungry for knowledge. His unique style of teaching and, attention to the historical detail of Shotokan karate make his coaching seminars a must for every serious Shotokan karateka.