Shito Ryu Karate-DO

We teach a traditional karate style originating from the island of Okinawa. Shito Ryu is one of the four major styles practiced in Japan. Karate goes back several hundred years to Okinawa. Karate is a term in Japanese: “Kara” means empty and “te” means hand, so karate is fighting hand to hand without weapons.

The History of Shito Ryu


kenwa-mabuniSensei Mabuni Kenwa (1889-1952) studied under Sensei Anko Itosu of Shuri in Okinawa from he was 13 years old back in 1902. He learned numerous kata from Sensei Itosu. The kata’s were known for their quick and explosive techniques.

In 1908 Mabuni was recommended by his friend Chojun Miyagi to learn from his Sensei Kanryo Higaonna of Naha and he did. Here he learned the powerful and circular techniques that later became the core of Sensei Miyagi’s style (Goju-Ryu).

In 1929 Sensei Mabuni Kenwa moved to mainland Japan with his family and settled in Osaka. He established his dojo “Yoshu-kan” in 1934 and formally registered his karate style as Shito-Ryu  after both his masters.

Shito-ryu is influenced by Naha-te and Shuri-te disciplines. The name Shito is a name given to the combination of Japanese character of his first Sensei Ankoh Itosu (Shuri-te discipline) and his second Sensei Kanryo Higaonna (Naha-te discipline). So Shito-ryu has great emphasis on power and accuracy in striking, plus the soft circular blocking techniques in combination with powerful counter-strike combinations.


ryusho-sakagami-senseiRyusho Sakagami (1915-1993) studies Shito-Ryu under Sensei Mabuni Kenwa for many years and received his ‘Shihan” (master teacher) license from Master Mabuni Kenwa in 1941. He received numerous commendations and was presented by the Japan Budo Society the Distinguished Service Award in field of Budo on January 15th 1982. On August the 19th 1992 the Japan Karatodo Rengokai bestowed upon him Karatedo 10th Dan.

Sensei Ryusho Sakagami was highly qualified and well respected. He distinguished himself as Kendo Hanshi 7th Dan, Jodo Kyoshi 7th Dan, Iaido Hanshi 8th Dan and Ryukyu Kobudo Hanshi Shihan 8th Dan. On the 22nd of June 1994 the Japanese Karate Foundation bestowed upon him Karatedo Hanshi 9th Dan posthumously.

Master Sakagami disciples were his son Shihan Sadaake Sakagami (Chief Instructor, Japan Headquarters), Shihan Seiko Suzuki (Tokyo – founder of present Seiko-Kai Shito-Ryu), Shihan Fumio Demura, (1965 founder of Shito-Ryu Itosu-Kai U.S.A.) and Shihan Kei C. Tsumura (1969 Founder of Shito-Ryu Itosu-Kai, Canada).
Grandmaster Ryusho Sakagami died on December 28, 1993. 


Seiko-Kai, a branch of the Shito-Ryu style, was founded by Soke Seiko Suzuki, of Shinkoiwa Tokyo. Suzuki Sensei commenced his training in Karate in 1954 under Sakagami Sensei. In 1957 Sakagami Sensei relocated from Tokyo to Yokohama and left Suzuki Sensei to run the Tokyo dojo. In 1963 he commenced study of Ryu Kyu Kobudo under Shinken Taira Sensei. In 1965 Sakagami Sensei presented Suzuki Sensei with his Karate-do Shihan certificate. In 1968 he was awarded 7th Dan Kyoshi in Kobudo by Shiken Taira Sensei. After Sensei Sakagami’s passing in 1993, Suzuki Sensei decided to form his own organization, the Suzuki-Ha Shito-Ryu Nihon Karatedo Seiko-Kai.


Shihan Yoshiaki Akira SatoSato sensei started studying karate in 1962. A few years later he became a member of Suzuki sensei’s dojo and practiced there for many years.

In 1970 he traveled to Canada to study English at a college and continued to practice karate on his own. Other students saw him practicing by himself on the grass at the college and asked him to become their teacher. Instead of returning to Japan after one-year study, he stayed in Canada and has since then devoted all his energies to develop Shito Ryu karate in Canada and all over the world.

In 2017 Sato sensei formed his own organization and adopted the name Sato-Ha Shito-ryu Kokusai Rengo (International Federation) with affiliations in over 25 countries. In Canada the organization is known as Shitoryu Satokai Canada.


ron-portraitRon Matthews – Shihan 7th Dan is the Chief Instructor of Satokai Shito-Ryu Australia.
Ron Sensei has studied the martial arts since 1966 as follows, Kodokan Judo 1966-1968, Shotokan Karate 1971-1976, Tae Kwon Do 1976-1980, Goju-Kai Karate 1980-1986.
Ron Sensei has studied Shito Ryu Karate since 1987 and has been to Japan many times to train with some of the world’s best Shito-ryu Karate Instructors.

Sensei Ron Matthews received his ‘Shihan” (master teacher) license from Master Suzuki Seiko in 2015.
He wants to pass the knowledge he has gained from over 40 years of Martial Arts Study to his students so they can also enjoy the benefits of what serious karate practice can offer. Ron Sensei has also competed successfully in State, National and International Karate Tournaments and while his preference is teaching traditional Shito-ryu Karate-Do for self defence, he continues to learn more about “Sport Karate” for those who are keen to enter competitions.


neil-portraitNeil Smith is a 3nd Dan instructor and the Sensei of Satokai Shito-Ryu Karate Do Newcastle, a branch under Satokai Karate-Do Australia.

Neil Sensei originally started training in Jin Wu Koon Shaloin Double Dragon Kung Fu in 1984, then transferred to Budokan Karate in 1986 and trained till 2008 and achieved 2nd Dan in this style.

Years ago he moved to the Central Coast and started training Shito Ryu with Ron Sensei at his Erina & Ettalong dojos. In 2013 Neil Sensei received the award of NSW Shito Ryu Student of the year for his training efforts.

Since 2014 Sensei Neil has traveled to Japan each year and on his last trip he was awarded his 3rdst Dan in Shito Ryu by Master Suzuki Seiko. Neil Sensei has practiced the art of karate for over 30 years and continues to train weekly with Ron Shihan furthering his knowledge so that he may pass it on to his students.

There are Shito Ryu dojo’s in over 25 countries. The headquarter Hombu Dojo is located in Vancouver, Canada, at the Peretz Centre, 6184 Ash Street.

Hombu Dojo Vancouver – Canada

This is the home dojo for the International Satokai chief instructor, Akira Sato, 9th Dan.

Sensei Sato has travelled to 41 countries for workshops and tournaments.

Sensei Sato and a team of experienced black belt instructors provide classes at all levels for both adults and children. Students very quickly master the skills necessary to advance through the various levels. Many Vancouver Shito-Ryu students excel in local, national and international tournaments.