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Valley Martial Arts Center / World Budo Karate Association


Valley Martial Arts Center, Best Shotokan Karate School - Los Angeles, CA

Our karate style is Shotokan, the most widely practiced and considered a traditional and influential form of karate. The founding father was Gichin Funakoshi (1868–1957). In 1936, Funakoshi built the first Shotokan dojo in Tokyo, Japan.

Funakoshi laid out the Twenty Precepts of Karate (Niju kun), which formed the foundations of the art. Within the principles, based on Bushido and Zen, lies the philosophy of Shotokan. It alludes to humility, respect, compassion, patience, and inward and outward calmness. Funakoshi believed the karateka would improve their person through karate practice and observation of these 20 principles.

Funakoshi's students continued to teach karate after he died in 1957. One of them was Hidetaka Nishiyama (1928-2008), a founder of the Japan Karate Association (JKA), American Amateur Karate Federation (AAKF), and International Traditional Karate Federation (ITKF). Nishiyama brought karate to the US in 1961 and continued to spread it all over the world. Our instructors are direct students of Hidetaka Nishiyama. As Sensei Nishiyama taught, we aim to develop and nurture karate as Budo. We want to share its benefits and better the lives of many people in the community and worldwide.

WBKA world budo karate

We are a member of the national traditional karate federation, WBKA (World Budo Karate Association). (, a non-political and non-profit organization.
World Budo Karate Association follows the sensei Nishiyama system of principles, which are universal and can be applied by any karate-style practitioner.

Funakoshi Gichin

Gichin Funakoshi (1868-1957)


A Brief History
Funakoshi was born in Okinawa in 1868. He was of samurai lineage, from a family that had been vassals of Ryukyu Dynasty nobles.
Funakoshi trained in Okinawan karate, Shorei-ryu, and Shorin-ryu. After years of study, Funakoshi arrived at a new understanding of martial arts and a more straightforward and modified style - Shotokan karate.

By the late 1910s, Funakoshi had many students who could pass on their master's teachings. He ventured to mainland Japan in 1917; in 1930, Funakoshi established an association, Dai-Nippon Karate-do Shoto-Kaito, the official keeper of Funakoshi's karate heritage.
In 1936, Funakoshi built his dojo in Tokyo and changed the written characters of karate to mean "empty hand" (空手).


Master Nishiyama

Hidetaka Nishiyama (1928-2008)

nishiyama - do not copy.webp

Hidetaka Nishiyama was a Japanese martial arts master, an internationally recognized instructor, author, administrator, and karate pioneer. A student of Funakoshi, Nishiyama brought karate to the United States of America in 1961 and worldwide.

Born in Tokyo, Japan, Nishiyama started kendo training in 1933, followed by judo in 1938. In 1943, he began training in Shotokan karate at the Tokyo dojo. By 1946, he had his black belt in karate, and by 1948, he would have his second dan. At his death, he was respectfully a 10th-degree black belt.
In 2000, the Nishiyama Cup in Moscow was the first official karate event in Russia since the end of the Soviet Union, honored Nishiyama. In 2000, the Emperor of Japan was awarded the Order of the Sacred Treasure (Gold Rays with Rosette). In the first Traditional Karate World Cup in 2001, Poland honored Nishiyama with the Officer's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland.
Nishiyama taught karate daily at Central Dojo (NKI) in Los Angeles, CA, until his death.
Sensei Nishiyama's full biography


Best Shotokan Karate Dojo in LA!

Our karate classes are perfect for anyone looking to build on their physical fitness and self-defense skills. We welcome students of all skill levels and backgrounds, from beginner to advanced, from juniors to seniors.

Our classes are designed to create a safe environment where you can develop your martial arts skills and improve your confidence and self-esteem.


Valley Martial Arts Center - Traditional karate, best Shotokan Karate, Shotokan karate for adults, a martial arts school in Sherman Oaks. Karate classes near Van Nuys, North Hollywood, Encino, Northridge, Studio City, Burbank, Hollywood / Los Angeles, CA

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